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Need advice please???

Norman Fenske

Member
Messages
69
Location
Richmond Va
All of my tanks have the same water ( makes it easier to maintain ) and now I have a problem, I have 1 pr of WC Breitbinden that are really acting listless cannot see the female but the male is either on the bottom in a corner just laying there or sometimes near the top in a corner. My water parameters are PH 6.5 to 7 no2 and no3 are okay my concern is general hardness according to the API test strips its above 180. I treated the tank with Catappa leaves and put some Carib Sea Amazon River solution?? What gets me every single tank and fish I have are doing fine except these and what is really odd they are in a 20 long and I have a divider in it on the other side have some triple reds and they are fine. If others were acting up okay there is a real issue but since its isolated to just one pr I am confused. Any ideas?
 

mrjbacon

Member
Messages
72
Location
Ohio
Did this start suddenly, or after you put your Breitbindens in the tank? Wild-caught specimens who are born in very soft water are much less tolerant of water that hard. I wouldn't use test strips either, you should get a real water test kit for things like GH, KH, pH, Ammonia, Nitrite, and Nitrate. Many people on this forum also own and regularly use a conductivity (TDS) meter.
 

Norman Fenske

Member
Messages
69
Location
Richmond Va
Test strips will you a clue but they are not accurate I agree I just went and got a Master test kit for freshwater I am going to check the water later I should know something by then.
 

mrjbacon

Member
Messages
72
Location
Ohio
Personally I use the API Master Fresh and supplement with the API GH & KH kit and Nutrafin Wide-Range pH kit. I need to get a TDS meter still.
 

Norman Fenske

Member
Messages
69
Location
Richmond Va
I went and got the same one yesterday. Do not have to worry about the breitbinden's anymore checked them this morning and they were deceased while on the other side of the divider my triple reds are doing great.
 

Norman Fenske

Member
Messages
69
Location
Richmond Va
triple and double reds golden cacatuoides, trifasciatas, orangeflash, agassizifire reds, agassizi curutu, macmasteri, 1 M panduro 1 M borelli
 

Mike Wise

Moderator
Staff member
5 Year Member
Messages
10,817
Location
Denver, Colorado, U.S.A.
All of the above are more tolerant of your water values than a true blackwater species like A. piaroa, especially wild caught specimens. Whether or not it was the water, the stress it caused wouldn't help.
 

Norman Fenske

Member
Messages
69
Location
Richmond Va
Based on some sound advice I bought a Ph / Tds meter this will let me know if there is an issue with my water. Before I get anymore WC I will make sure my water is up to the task.
 

gerald

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Messages
1,491
Location
Wake Forest NC, USA
Measuring pH and TDS will NOT tell you GH hardness. Unless TDS is very low, then the water is soft, but moderate to high TDS could have very low to very high hardness, because TDS is comprised of many other ions besides the ones that create hardness. Only a GH hardness test kit (or separate Ca and Mg tests like reef people use) can provide that info.
 

Norman Fenske

Member
Messages
69
Location
Richmond Va
I just got my TDS and PH meter today. The majority shows between 280 and 510ppm one is 627 and one reads 0-2x10?? also based on this the water is not the same in all my tanks.
 

dw1305

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5 Year Member
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Location
Wiltshire UK
Hi all,
I just got my TDS and PH meter today. The majority shows between 280 and 510ppm one is 627 and one reads 0-2x10?? also based on this the water is not the same in all my tanks.
@Gerald is right, the meter won't tell you what your hardness is, but in natural waters high conductivity values are usually related to high levels of calcium carbonate (Ca++ & HCO3- ions).

All your values are fairly high, if you divide the TDS ppm by 0.64 it will give you the conductivity in microS, so you are up to near 1000 microS.

The rain water I use isn't really soft enough to breed black-water fish, and it is usually below 150microS (100ppm TDS).

The reading of "0-2x10" means that the water has gone off the scale (over 1000ppm TDS), and it has given you a value on the ppt (parts per thousand) scale.

cheers Darrel
 

Norman Fenske

Member
Messages
69
Location
Richmond Va
so its safe to say my water it too hard for certain types of Apisto's and its also apparent I should probably get an RO unit as well. In the mean time what can I do to soften the water??
 

dw1305

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Messages
2,602
Location
Wiltshire UK
Hi all,
so its safe to say my water it too hard for certain types of Apisto's and its also apparent I should probably get an RO unit as well. In the mean time what can I do to soften the water??
It almost certainly is too hard. I don't know if it is an option for you, but I have hard tap water and I use <"rain-water and a Daphnia bioassay"> for the tanks.
I decided to check the water right out of the faucet it reads 143ppm.
OK. I was expecting a higher reading than that. Something in your tanks is raising the conductivity. If you don't make many water changes I'd try a few more.

cheers Darrel
 

Norman Fenske

Member
Messages
69
Location
Richmond Va
I decided an RO is my best option your suggestion is fine and I am sure with enough water changes things will settle down but long term this will improve my water quality. Now that I am going to get one and in my case money does not grow on trees I am looking at these 2 one is a 4 stage 100GPD and the other is a 5 stage 150GPD per day and yes the the 150GDP per day seems to be the best but I have made incorrect assumptions before so which one?
 

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gerald

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Messages
1,491
Location
Wake Forest NC, USA
I decided to check the water right out of the faucet it reads 143ppm.

Is that 143 ppm the GH hardness reading or the TDS reading? If it's hardness, that's pretty high (8 degrees GH) but if that's a TDS measurement then a lot of that TDS might be from other ions in your tap water (Na, Cl, SO4, SiO2, etc) in which case GH might not really be too high.
 

Norman Fenske

Member
Messages
69
Location
Richmond Va
I used the TDS meter and checked it twice. Each time 143 - 144ppm. Even if your right with levels in the 300 to 500 and a couple in the 600 range and these were done after I did a water change its still pretty hard. I will verify with a GH and KH test kit but even so I still think in the long run getting an RO unit is a good idea. My only problem which one I listed 2 just need help on the right one to get.
 

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