What is Aquarium PH?

What Is Aquarium PH?

Aquarium pH written with the small p is the representation of a much hydrogen is present in the water. The technical term used for this is power/potential of hydrogen.

In an aquarium there are several para meters like GH KH etc. However, pH is the most important of all. Essentially, you need to understand that pH determines whether the water is acidic, neutral or alkaline.

Measure of PH

PH is always measured between 0 to 14 and seven is treated as neutral. If the pH is on the lower-side it is towards the acidic side and if it is on the higher-side it is alkaline in nature.

When you’re talking about higher side and lower side it is about reading it from the midpoint of seven. It’s all about less than and more than seven.

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Fish that survive in freshwater generally require a pH between 6.5 to 7.9. The, most important aspect here is the stability of your pH. Let us understand what is meant by stability of pH.

If your pH is constantly 7.2 then it should remain within the range of 7.2 to 7.4. One may wonder at this point of time as to why fluctuation from 7.2 to 7.4 is called stability of pH.

Well, the answer to this question is pretty simple. In an aquarium that pH is never the same throughout the day. As the heat of the day increases pH undergoes a slight variation. Therefore, the slight variation is always taken into account while calculating the stability of the pH.

It is only when there is a stark variation in the pH, for example, 7.2 to 7.6, it will be treated as a fluctuation in the pH. It is these variations that are dangerous for your fish and it can even kill them.


Therefore, when you are referring to aquarium pH is all about maintaining a stable pH in which your fish to know display any symptoms of illness and are growing well.

The best way is to always observe your fish carefully and determine if they active and healthy. Testing your pH on a regular basis is always the best thing to do. By saying so it is implied that you must test your pH at the same times of the day.

For example, if you tested your pH in the evening and continue testing your pH in the evening. This is because you may find a variation in the pH measured in the morning and the pH measured in the evening.

Pro Tip: Do not try to achieve a different pH level than what you already have, if it is within the prescribed range if your fish are fine.  

Fish Type

Another important aspect in relation to pH is that different types of fish needed different types of pH. Yes! Its fishy!lol! Make sure you talk to your aquarium or do your research about the pH that your fish.

You can only have fish which can survive in the same range of pH. For example, a discus fish needs a very low pH and a cichlid needs very high pH. So, if you host a discus fish in a cichlid with a high pH, then it is crystal clear that your discus fish is going to die.


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Having spoken so much about what pH is and which aspects of pH are important, it is now time to look at a few aspects which will help you maintain your pH from fluctuating too much.

In most recommended and simple thing to do is doing at 25 to 30% water change regularly. By regularly we would be looking at once a week.

When you are changing the entire water after cleaning your tank, it is important that you use the water conditioner to stabilize the water and bring down the chlorine levels so that it does not affect the fish or your aquatic plants.


You can also have aquatic plants and driftwood which really help in keeping your pH stable. Clean your aquarium filters regularly and ensure that the sponges in the filter are thoroughly washed.

Do not use any soaps or chemicals to do this since it will do more harm to your fish than good. Just use plain water.

You will find it interesting to know that there are certain types of fish that work towards keeping your aquarium clean such as plecos.

Keeping your tank clean is important because the increase of wastage in the tank triggers a vicious cycle of nitrates, nitrites and alkalinity. These fish help feeding on all the waste in the tank and thus reduce the impact on your fish.

Electronic pH meters are available online which help measure pH easily. The links are given below. You can use this to measure your pH in a very easy. Test kits are also available and you can check those too.


If you’d like to know more about pH such as the causes of pH, handling high pH and low pH and much more, click here.

Wrapping Up:

Aquarium pH is all about doing the right thing at the right time will take care of all aspects. Mainly measuring your pH regularly. Over time, you will be easily able to maintain the pH with much trouble.

  • pH measures how acidic or alkaline the water is
  • pH is never the same throughout the day
  • Different fish need different pH levels.
  • Stable pH is what is important
  • Live plants, driftwood and plecos help a lot

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