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Discussion Starter #1
I am experiencing problems of high ph in my new reef tank. I have kept reef aquariums for 5 years now and this is a new set up. It has now been running for 2 months.

First here are my tank specs
800 litre display tank
300 litre sump
2 jeboa power heads (can't remember the exact spec but I run them on 50% and get x20 turnover)
TMC 1500litre skimmer
Running bio pellets in reactor
Running carbon bags in high flow area of Sump
2 radion and 1 max spect razor over tank
1 maxspect over sump
90kg of dry marine rock, this rock was brought dry and no live marine rock has gone into the tank
For seeding the tank, I used the Red Sea acclimatisation kit

I use a seneye reef to record my ph and I also cross test with a drop test kit.

My ph runs are 8.6 - 8.7 over the day night cycle.

My ph has become a steady up down cycle in the last 20 days.

I have tried adding distilled vinegar. Which brought my ph down to 8.3 but it went strategy back up again.

I also run air bubbles through the sump. I have two large twin air pumps. 1 runs two air stones and the other runs to bubble filters. There is also a waterfall built into my tank, so I don't think lack of carbon dioxide is too much.

So far I have some frags (zoos,lps and Sps) in sump and some crabs and snails in the main tank.
The coral seems fine and although was only fragged 1 month ago, most pieces are doing fine.

Please help, as I don't know if the ph is fine, or I should start dosing to keep it down?
 

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Shark...fish are friends
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what is your pH of the water you are using to mix with salt water? What are you using to measure your salt water mix? What are you using to measure the pH?

There are a ton of changes going on in the tank when it is only 2 months old... the water chemistry will constantly evolve for the first 6 months to a year of the tank's life, so at 2 months old I wouldn't be too worried yet... once the tank settles down a bit and bacteria get to work the bacterial activity will naturally reduce your pH. At 2 months old I wouldn't dose anything, the only time you really need to dose is if your tank is packed full of SPS corals or you don't do a normal weekly or every other week type of water change, otherwise don't dose anything and let your salt mix handle everything. By dosing to reduce the pH all you will do is cause big swings which will irritate the corals.

In the mean time I wouldn't add much to the tank... let it take some time to get established and stock slowly (personally I wouldn't recommend adding more corals until after about 6 months old just because I don't like to fight to keep algae off of corals and between 3-6 months old the tank is usually covered in algae)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hi Rob, I am going to go and check it out now, I am using the same water as I use for my old 360 litre reef tank. So I assumed ph would be fine. I measured ph when the tank started and it started at 8.2 for a few weeks, then it shot up and now it's steady day night cycle.'
The seneye device I use to measure Ph, takes measurements every 15 minutes so I can log on and see a very clear graph of the results. For the cycling period the ph was erratic now it is a steady wave curve.

I had the same issue with my old tank, but adding air sorted it.

I am worried it may be the rock I added.

I also use a drop test kit to double check against the seneye readings and make sure they match
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I'm just worried it may be the rock.

Also just to reassure I have only added the zoa frags and small cuttings from my spa and lps in my old tank, really just to see how they go.

No plans for any big purchases yet
 

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Shark...fish are friends
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what kind of rock are you using? If it's a home made concrete rock I'd say yes that the pH will go up because concrete has a high pH, but if it's a natural araggonite based rock it shouldn't be too bad...

adding air will actually increase your pH. More O2 (oxygen) = higher pH, more CO2 (carbon dioxide) = lower pH.
 

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I hate drop test kits, all tge colors look the same and dont look anything like the color cards. Can you have a lfs double check that? Have you calibrates your probe? It may be your rock, but like rin said give it a couple months before you start tinkering to bring it down.

Where did you gwt the rock from? Its a good possibility that may be the cause, but 8.6 isnt too high to where it will damage anything, being a 2month old tank and excess nutrients would do a coral in first
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I'm using dead coral rock, I went through it when I brought it and pulled out a few heavy pieces that didn't seem like the porous coral rock.

For the probe, I have to change the slide every month, so it recalibrates then. Also I have put the probe in my old tank and got a Low ph readying.

For the air through the tank, I thought you had to pump air through as co2 has a much lower take up rate than oxygen, so pumping the air through gives more contact for the co2.

Corals seam to be fine, algae growing so going to take ur advise and 'suck it and sea'
 

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Shark...fish are friends
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I don't think I'd worry too much... as the bacteria activity increases the pH will drop down and then you'll have more or less perfect pH =)

Personally I don't check my pH... my tank at home has a pH probe on it through my apex, but I have so much bacteria in my tank that I have the opposite problem that my pH is always way low. Everything seems to be fine though... I don't think pH has a huge impact on fish and corals unless it's pretty extreme, it's more important to be consistent than it is to be perfect, so that's where dosing will get you in to trouble if there are big swings when you dose.

If the tank is otherwise cycled I'd add a fish or two and watch them for a bit... I really don't think fish care about pH at all (again unless it's way high or way low) and having a fish will generate waste = more bacteria = lower pH
 
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