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The Importance of pH Testing

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The Importance of pH Testing

 

Although it is sometimes overlooked, pH may very well be one of the most critical variables of water quality parameters within a healthy aquarium environment. It is important to understand the correct range for different setups. For example, maintaining a pH in the range of 8.1 to 8.4 in marine systems will offer a natural, antiseptic effect, helping fish resist illness and also keep coral from calcifying at an accelerated speed. If the pH is in constant fluctuation, or is fixed at a position that is too high or low, it can be harmful to the organisms in your aquarium. This is only one reason why testing your pH is so important. Observed changes can also give you early warning that other water parameters may be endangering the health of your marine aquarium.

 

By using quality testing equipment to closely monitor your pH, and by correcting the problem expediently, you greatly improve your chances for keeping a thriving and healthy reef system. For best results, testing with a pH kit should occur twice weekly; you can also invest in an electronic pH monitor for ease and convenience.  Monitors display a continuous LCD readout of pH levels; some have an alarm feature that alerts you when the levels stray from the desired range.

 

A failing pH can be an indication of excess ammonia and/or nitrite resulting from a dead organism, decaying food or plants within the system; it could also be linked to a deficiency of calcium, magnesium or alkalinity. Each of these conditions either produces acids, or is an indication of a mineral imbalance that is harmful to aquarium organisms.

 

The pH should be tested regularly to maintain ideal conditions and also to foresee any dangerous ammonia or nitrate spikes. The investment in time and test equipment will reward your aquarium with happy, healthy, flourishing inhabitants.



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