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Distilled water

Discussion in 'Water Chemistry' started by PexGat, Dec 14, 2018.

  1. PexGat

    PexGat New Member

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    Hey guys! The other day I got a pair of Apistogramma Agassizii and I'd really love to breed them. My test strips are probably giving me wrong values, but my *slightly hard neutral water* is hard as a rock and it's pH its way above 8.5 according to them. Due to this almost certain inaccuracy, I'm getting worried that something might be off, so I'd like to use some sort of softer water to breed them in. I've heard that some people use a mix of tap with distilled water and I can't really get a RO DI filter, so do you guys think it should be ok? Will I need to add any sort of buffer or would a 50/50 tap and distilled water mix be fine?
  2. gerald

    gerald Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Yes mixing tap 50/50 with distilled will reduce the hardness by half (assuming there's nothing in your aquarium that is adding hardness) but without knowing the GH hardness you're starting with, we have no way of knowing whether 50/50 is an appropriate dilution. pH does not follow simple dilution math like hardness does; tap water can be soft and still have high pH. A. agassizi (especially domestic strains) is not as demanding of soft water and low pH as some other obligate-blackwater Apisto species. If you're on a public water system, the city or county might post hardness and other parameters online, or call and ask one of the water treatment plant chemists.
  3. PexGat

    PexGat New Member

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    Hey!

    Thanks for the reply. I've been checking the water consistently with the test strips qnd after all I had really hard water from the start. I was confused about it because I had done a liquid test and it said it was roughly 7.5, but this was indeed quite some time ago.
    From the tests, my water was <21° dGH, so it wasn't really suitable for breeding and keeping those apistos long term, I suppose.
    But I tested my tap water and it was the complete opposite! Really low GH (<6° dGH) and fairly low KH too (0-6° dKH). As for pH, my tap water was around 6.5.
    After some water changes with 100% tap, the pH dropped to about neutral (and I'm trying to lower too it with tannins) and the GH to about 7° dGH. I think I'll use tap from now on, do you find it suitable for breeding Agassizii?
  4. gerald

    gerald Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    I use 100% tap for most species, and tapwater + rainwater mix for soft/acid-loving species. But my tap water is softer than yours: only 1 to 2 dGH (20 to 35 mg/L hardness as CaCO3). pH from my tap is high (around 8) because they add NaOH to prevent pipe corrosion, but that doesn't add any hardness.