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I have had my media based system for almost 3 years.  I pretty much ignored it for most of the last year due to tragedy in my family.  I have really been working with it now for a couple of months and I have discovered that I have very high pH (around 8.2).  I have well water that tests at 7 but is very hard.  Is it possible that as my water evaporates from the tank that calcium is left behind and is building up- thus acting as a buffer?  If so, what can I do?  I have added some rain water (pH 7) but it didn't change it.  Even adding a little pH down doesn't seem to help.

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Ok, I'm going to put some peat moss in the system.  Is anyone familiar with doing that?

Test your media too, it may be contributing.

I have a system running around 8.2 as well and am interested in any experiences in successfully lowering the pH.  We have an expanded shale media which we believe to be the main culprit.  

Maggie, in the past we have tried low doses of muriatic acid over time.  It had a small temporary effect but did not contribute to a long term solution.

I use expanded clay and a very small amount of lava rock.  I didn't think either could be a problem(?)  I still wonder if the calcium in my water could be building up on my media.

Jonathan Kadish NYC AA Chair said:

Test your media too, it may be contributing.

Well, lo and behold, I tested my expanded clay and it tested alkaline!  Now what?  I can't afford to buy hydroton for all the beds.  I used several bags of "hydroton" and 5 or 6 bags of a no-name expanded clay.  I guess all of the clay products are not the same?

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