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  1. Thank you SO very much for all your advice.
  2. The tap water that I left out now has a pH of 8.0. So it dropped a little. I am pretty sure its the high pH tap water that is making my tank pH high after a water change. Do you recommend a RO/DI filter so that I can filter my tap water before adding it to the tank. Do those help with the pH? Or should I treat my tap water in a bucket with pH Down to get the pH to drop a little before adding it to the tank? I will also go to the pet store to get the hardness tested...those test strips are not super accurate.
  3. The tank is a 36 gallon bow front with black gravel, four fake plants, one live plant and a ceramic cave. I have a Penguin double biowheel filter that has a carbon filter in each chamber. I also have a filter sponge that has air flowing through it. I have a heater set at 78 degrees, a single power head, and a second air stone that is attached to a bubble wand. Historically the pH has been around 7.4 or 7.6 with no ammonia and low nitrites and low nitrates. I try to clean 30% of the water every other week. This is the first time that I know of that my tap water has had such a crazy high pH. Im glad the pH in the tank is starting to come down on its own, but I want to be proactive for the next water change.
  4. OK, thank you! I just filled a jug of water from the tap and tested the pH and hardness. I ran three pH tests. The API Freshwater Master Test Kit read 8.2. The other test strips (used for a hot tub) read pH 9 and pH 8.4. So I would guess its between 8.2 and 8.4. The API kit doesn't have a hardness or alkalinity test, but the hot tub strips do. I used two different brands and for both I got a hardness of 0-100 and an alkalinity of 240. I also let the utility company know that there water is suddenly expressing a very high pH (historically it has been 7.2). They replied that I am "basically a observing an alkalinity issue-pun intended". So, despite the humor, I don't think the high pH concerns them. So, I might be dealing with high pH tap water for the foreseeable future.
  5. I have four Ranchu goldfish in a 36 gallon tank, and have had them about a year. When I tested my tank water a few days later I noticed the pH had increased to 8.6! So I tested the water from the tap and it was 8.8! In the past, the water from my tap had always been ok, so I got lazy and didn't test it this time. Lesson learned. Over the past three days the pH has been dropping on its own, and is now 7.6. To prevent this from happening in the future, when I do a water change, should I add pH down to the tap water after treating it with water conditioner, before adding it to the tank? I have been reading about RO/DI filters. Does anyone have any suggestions on a good brand? Do they help lower pH coming out of tap water? I have heard pros and cons on drift wood and peat moss. Has anyone had any experience with them? I welcome any suggestions. I love these fish and really want to keep them safe. I actually just did an international goldfish grooming competition with one of them which was a really fun learning experience.
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