My city water got harder, so driftwood recommendations?

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biofish

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Hello y’all! My local tap recently went up a lot on the hard scale and is now at 244 gh and that’s a no no for my Cory catfish so o was researching ways to naturally lower it and I think driftwood is my best bet. Alkalinity is also higher than it should be so figured I’d hit two birds with one stone.

What is the best wood type for this? And how much? My tanks are three 10g, one 20g, one 29g, one 55g.
 
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biofish

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Does it not lower gh? 😱😱

I was reading articles and the most mentioned ones were peatmoss, almond leaves, driftwood, something called reverse osmosis, and water softening pillows?

Which method would you recommend?
 

Rocky998

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Does it not lower gh? 😱😱

I was reading articles and the most mentioned ones were peatmoss, almond leaves, driftwood, something called reverse osmosis, and water softening pillows?

Which method would you recommend?
Reverse osmosis is the best option but the most expensive as well.
Peatmoss is the second best but I would not do it.
You COULD try softening pillows in your filter and see how much it lowers the water hardness.

How hard is your water now?
 
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Reverse osmosis is the best option but the most expensive as well.
Peatmoss is the second best but I would not do it.
You COULD try softening pillows in your filter and see how much it lowers the water hardness.

How hard is your water now?
I got a quick strip test at petsmart. I usually go to a more reputable store for testing, but I swung by after a few hours of errands that ended up taking a lot longer than expected. I’m not sure if being left in a cup in a car for that long affected it but these were the results
7D1D4BF0-D550-4F96-A269-1F9272CA3297.jpeg

I’m going out tomorrow to see what I can do about the hardness but I’ll probably get it retested at a better place just to make sure. I really need to get the API testing kit 😩
 

Rocky998

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I got a quick strip test at petsmart. I usually go to a more reputable store for testing, but I swung by after a few hours of errands that ended up taking a lot longer than expected. I’m not sure if being left in a cup in a car for that long affected it but these were the results View attachment 162373
I’m going out tomorrow to see what I can do about the hardness but I’ll probably get it retested at a better place just to make sure. I really need to get the API testing kit 😩
Yeah I would get the API master kit AND the KH/GH kit... Liquid tests are way more accurate than strip tests. Strip tests can be off sometimes.

If that is the actual accurate readings, I would either get hard water fish or combine your water with R/O water
 
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Just ordered some water softening pillows so carry me until I can get everything sorted!
 

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Some people confused GH with KH. drift wood,,almond leave,peatmoss release organics react with carbonate reduce KH and lPH. Hower GH is caused by calcium and magnesium in the water. The only way to reduce GH is to remove calcium and magneisum from the water. RO systems and pillows will do this but RO in th short term costs the most. Long term RO will cost the least.

The billows you purchasedHave a resin the absorbs minerals in the water. The pillow has to be replaced periodically. Your location is listed as california. California is in a drought right now soft river water is in short supply right now. Your water utility therefore has started to pump water from an aquifer. Aquifer water is typically hard.
 

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Water pillows are usually ion exchange units that swap calcium for sodium. Sodium isn't good for fish

What sort of fish do you have besides the Corydoras?
 

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How quickly did this happen, did your fish get any kind of shock from the change over?

That strip does look really dark for the hardness so probably need to intervene. I would go for the RO route personally, the easiest way to do it is a continuous system and have a water storage butt somewhere ready to mix with your tap water aiming to get back to where you started - eg if your tap water is now 300ppm and you previously had 150ppm you would do a 50/50 split as the RO water has 0ppm.

Wills
 

Guyb93

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my knowledge is wood will lower your ph and by a knock on effect removes minerals which lowers your Gh .

Maybe that’s wrong but I will say my Ph and Gh lower after a week and I have 20-25 kg of wood in my tank
 
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The billows you purchasedHave a resin the absorbs minerals in the water. The pillow has to be replaced periodically. Your location is listed as california. California is in a drought right now soft river water is in short supply right now. Your water utility therefore has started to pump water from an aquifer. Aquifer water is typically hard.
Ahhh…. That makes sense. It has been really bad lately. The most obvious change is that everyone now has limits on watering plants so every plant is now a really sad dusty brown color. We typically get our water from the Colorado river…. But that’s 30 feet lower than it should be rn…..

What sort of fish do you have besides the Corydoras?
In my tanks I only have guppies, Cory catfish, and candy stripped pleco (who might be a clown pleco bc I was asking in another forum to help me gender them and they mentioned it. All I know is that the LFS said it was a candy stripped 💀)

My dads tank holds neon tetras. He doesn’t care enough for these details to get this all checked out so it mostly falls on me.

How quickly did this happen, did your fish get any kind of shock from the change over?
I got my water tested because my Cory catfish were getting agitated and glass surfing. Last time I tested I think my water was in the 180 range. I typically do 50% water changes which might’ve helped them adapt so I didn’t realize the water hardness changed until I had to do a couple 90% water changes in order to move my fish tanks. The 55g is still cycling so nothing is in that.

I started looking up reverse osmosis systems and I’m a bit lost. How are they set up exactly? I mentioned it to my dad and he said we would need big tanks to contain the water and that we could technically get the entire house outfitted with it for 5k (expensive 💀) And I’m seeing water filters that attach to faucets all the way to something that looks like it came out of a medical engineering office. I use a python and connect it to my shower for all my water changes.
 

Rocky998

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started looking up reverse osmosis systems and I’m a bit lost. How are they set up exactly? I mentioned it to my dad and he said we would need big tanks to contain the water and that we could technically get the entire house outfitted with it for 5k (expensive 💀) And I’m seeing water filters that attach to faucets all the way to something that looks like it came out of a medical engineering office.
The ones that hook up to faucets are nice because they filter a certain amount if water every hour. You would use that water for the water changes... Remember that you have to keep buying filters every few months to a year to keep the R/O filter working right.
 

Byron

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my knowledge is wood will lower your ph and by a knock on effect removes minerals which lowers your Gh .

Maybe that’s wrong but I will say my Ph and Gh lower after a week and I have 20-25 kg of wood in my tank

This depends upon the GH/KH and some other factors. Steven mentioned this above. Organics (wood, peat, dried leaves) can lower pH and possibly GH/KH but it all depends upon the initial levels and what if any other additives are impacting these. Assuming the GH/KH here is due to the "hard" minerals dissolved in the water, the only effective and safe method is to dilute the water with RO, etc. If the water authority is adding chemicals/substances to increase these, that is another issue.
 

Colin_T

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The guppies will be fine in hard water but the others prefer it softer.

Reverse Osmosis (R/O) units are filters that strip out minerals and chemicals from the water and leave almost pure water behind with a pH of 7.0 and 0 GH and 0 KH. You would then mix some r/o water with some tap water to get the GH you want.

Most R/O units simply get attached to a garden tap with a normal hose fitting that goes on a tap. You turn the tap on and water is slowly forced through membranes and filter media and drips out the other end of the unit. You don't normally need to modify anything, just screw the fitting onto a tap and turn the tap on.

You need a container to hold and store the r/o water in. R/O units filter water slowly so you can't turn a tap on and fill up a bucket of r/o water in a few seconds, it takes hours or days depending on the size of the unit.

R/O units waste a bit of water. The good units have a 1:1 conversion rate. This means they provide 1 litre of pure water to 1 litre of waste water. The waste water has all the minerals and chemicals in and is discarded onto the lawn or garden. The pure water is held for use later on. Cheaper units might have a 2:1 ratio or 3:1 ratio. This means they have 2 or 3 litres of waste water for 1 litre of pure water.

If you live in a dry climate and water is expensive, r/o units might not be a cheap option.

The cartridges in the r/o units can last for years, it just depends on how much water gets put through them. They usually say to change cartridges after x amount of water has gone through the system. This can vary a lot and if you have very hard water with lots of chemicals, you might need to replace cartridges more often. If the water isn't that hard and relatively free of chemicals, the cartridges can last longer than recommended. You test the GH of the pure water and change the cartridges when the GH start going back up.
 

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