Water Treatments and Additives

Water Treatments and Additives

Koi and Pond Keepers are constantly striving for better water quality and mostly water clarity. The demand for clarity is an overwhelming obsession amongst Koi Keepers. Clarity doesnt have much to do with quality so it is purely for the benefit of the Koi and Pond Keeper usually so he can observe his prize possesions. Most Koi Ponds have somewhat innadequate filtration to maintain clarity and to overcome this various additives can be used to help the filter cope.

NTLabs Kh Buffer

Koi Care Pond Buffer KH Up

The buffer capacity of pond water is the ability of pond water to maintain the pH at the correct level for the survival of your fish. The metabolism of fish in the pond tends to use up KH buffer and if this is not replaced can lead to sudden pH crash causing death of fish, frequently at night. It is advised to test KH regularly with Pondlab Hardness Test Kit and maintain the KH level above 6 degrees carbonate hardness.

1 Kg treats 6800 litres (1500 gallons)

Koi Care GH & Minerals Up

Maintaining a general hardness of water of at least 8 degrees of hardness helps to keep the biological processes working properly thus avoiding stagnation and acidification. The calcium and magnesium forming the general hardness of water are essential for the proper growth of plants and aquatic micro-organisms which consume unicellular algae and help to keep the water clear.

1 litre treats 6800 litres (1500 gallons)

The Buffer System Explained

Before the importance of the buffer system can be understood it is essential to explain the definition and chemical basis of pH. The pH is the degree of acidity in the water. The acidity is determined by the proportion of hydrogen ions (H+) to hydroxyl ions (OH-) in the water. Extremely acid water (pH 1.0) has very few hydroxyl ions, but many free hydrogen ions. Extremely alkaline water (pH 14) has very few free hydrogen ions but many hydroxyl ions. Neutral water (pH 7.0) has equal proportions of the two.
Thus free hydrogen ions lower the pH, increasing the acidity of the water. Free hydrogen ions are released by the filter system as a by-product of the nitrogen cycle. Carbon dioxide released by living organisms in the water dissolves, making carbonic acid, which lowers the pH. There are also many organic acids in the detritus of a pond or aquarium, which lower the pH.
The pH can rise due to removal of carbonic acid by plants and algae (which use carbon dioxide during photosynthesis). The pH of a pond or freshwater or marine aquarium is in a dynamic equilibrium. In other words there are many factors that exert an influence on the pH, and these are counteracted by
the buffer system. The buffering capacity of a pond or aquarium can be defined as the ability of the water to resist changes in pH. The buffer system is comprised primarily of bicarbonates and
carbonates, giving the buffer system the alternative name of Carbonate Hardness. However other bases such as hydroxides, silicates, phosphates, and borates contribute to the buffering capacity.
Another name for the buffer system is the Total Alkalinity. All the above mentioned compounds are strong alkalis (they are termed bases - they have a high pH) So the total alkalinity is the sum of all these compounds.

How does the buffer prevent pH change?

Free Hydrogen ions are effectively ‘mopped up’ by the buffer, taking them out of solution, and preventing them from causing a decline in pH (a rise in the acidity of the water). Conversely when the pH begins to rise too high, due to a lack of free hydrogen ions the buffer system will ‘release’ some to bring the pH back down to the correct level. How can I measure the strength of my buffer system? Using the NT Labs KH test kit. This test kit adds measured drops of acid to a 5 ml sample of pond or aquarium water. Mixed in with the acid is an indicator chemical, which changes colour from blue to yellow at a precise pH. Thus the number of drops added to the sample needed to bring about the colour change is directly proportional to the strength of the
buffer - or the ability of the water to resist a change in pH! Each drop is equivalent to 17.8 mg/L of Calcium carbonate - or put more conveniently one German degree of hardness (ºdH).

What is the ideal KH level?

Maintenance of KH in a marine aquarium is of absolute paramount importance, as the delicate marine life simply will not tolerate shifts in the pH of the water. Specialist aquaria such as softwater communities or discus tanks often have little or no KH value, as the pH is so low. Thus dramatic drops in pH are a constant risk, which must be prevented through regular water changes and scrupulous tank hygiene. Hardwater communities often have high KH values and dramatic drops in pH only occur in poorly maintained systems.
Softwater has very low carbonate hardness, and thus cannot resist strong changes in pH, If your tapwater KH is below 4 ºdH it will need a buffer replenisher. Use Koi Care KH up to raise the buffer of your water.

I live in a softwater area, how can I reduce the KH of my water?

Hardwater has a higher KH due to the high amount of mainly carbonates dissolved in it. The KH can be reduced in one of two ways. Firstly a strong acid such as Koi Care pH down can be added to the water to use up some of the alkalinity, thus reducing the pH. Secondly the tapwater could be run though a deioniser or reverse osmosis unit to completely remove all the minerals that affect the pH of the water. This deionised water can then be either used to dilute the tapwater to the correct pH and KH. Alternatively the water can have the correct amount of minerals dissolved back into it to give the water the correct pH and KH.

Cloverleaf Sludge Answer

Sludge Answer is a unique blend of beneficial bacteria used to convert and remove sludge from the pond and filter system.
The accumulation of sludge within a pond or filter system means far more than just an ugly sight, such deposits not only erode important saturated oxygen levels ,but also become a breeding ground for pathogenic bacteria.

Using nature's natural range of bacteria ,Cloverleaf’s "Sludge Answer" is the safe way to biologically removing sludge and dead algae thus creating a cleaner pond and less filter maintenance, whilst promoting a sounder environment for the fish to enjoy.

"Sludge Answer" is designed for frequent use throughout the year on established ponds, however it is also a first class product when used on an immature pond, and will greatly assist with filter maturity.

For ponds with sludge problems, it is recommended that when applying "Sludge Answer" it should be supported with Cloverleaf "Oxygen Answer" - especially if the pond does not have a mechanical air pump of substance.

For new or problematic ponds "Sludge Answer" should be added at the rate of 200cc per 1000 litres of pond water, with follow up doses (every 28 days or as required) at the rate of 100cc per 1000 litres. The product should be mixed with 3 litres of pond water, and poured over the pond surface and into the filter system using a watering can. (Note: Mark a watering can for "Pond Use" only). UV clarifiers should be turned off for the first 24 hours of application.
1 litre bottle will treat ponds up to 5,000 litres (30ml treats 150 litres).

Cloverleaf Bacteria Answer

Bacteria Answer is a unique blend of nitrifying bacteria to promote healthy filtration systems.
Nitrifying bacteria are vital for the establishment of a healthy balanced pond, and are a key contributor towards the development of a mature filtration system. Achieving such balance in a new fish pond is problematical, but Cloverleaf "Bacteria Answer" is the safe way to accelerate the process.

For new ponds, new filter systems, or sudden high fish loads, dosage with "Bacteria Answer" should be made twice a month for the first month, and once per month thereafter. For long term maintenance Cloverleaf’s "Pond Support Answer" is recommended.

Dosage of "Bacteria Answer" should be based on 200ml per 1000 litres of pond content, with the product mixed in 3 litres of pond water and applied with a watering can to the pond and filter system. UV clarifiers should be turned off for the first 24 hours of application.


1 litre bottle will treat ponds up to 5,000 litres (30ml treats 150 litres). For health & safety advice see bottom of page

Cloverleaf Filter Answer

Cloverleaf Filter Answer

Cloverleaf Filter Answer Filter Answer is a unique blend of nitrifying bacteria to promote healthy filtration systems. Nitrifying bacteria are vital for the establishment of a healthy balanced pond, and are a key contributor towards the...
Cloverleaf Sludge Answer

Cloverleaf Sludge Answer

Sludge Answer Cloverleaf Sludge Answer is a unique blend of beneficial bacteria used to convert and remove sludge from the pond and filter system.The accumulation of sludge within a pond or filter system means far more than just an ugly sight,...
NT Labs Filter Mature

NT Labs Filter Mature

Pond Aid Mature - Live Filter Bacteria Use weekly for a healthy ammonia/nitrite free pond. Establishes new filter, removes sludge from older ponds. Use in new or cleaned filter or in spring time for quick start. 250 ml treats 4546 litres (1000...
NTLabs Chlor Go

NTLabs Chlor Go

Koi Care Chlor-Go Is a dechlorinator which rapidly removes chlorine, chloramine and heavy metals such as zinc and lead from tap water, allowing fresh tap water to be added directly to the pond. Using Koi Care Chlorgo is the ideal water care...
NTLabs Gh Up Buffer

NTLabs Gh Up Buffer

Koi Care GH & Minerals Up Maintaining a general hardness of water of at least 8 degrees of hardness helps to keep the biological processes working properly thus avoiding stagnation and acidification. The calcium and magnesium forming the general...
NTLabs Kh Up Buffer

NTLabs Kh Up Buffer

Koi Care Pond Buffer KH Up The buffer capacity of pond water is the ability of pond water to maintain the pH at the correct level for the survival of your fish. The metabolism of fish in the pond tends to use up KH buffer and if this is not...
NTLabs Koi Care Medi Clay

NTLabs Koi Care Medi Clay

Koi Care Mediclay Pure high-grade ultra fine powdered montmorillonite revitaliser clay. Mediclay acts as an electro-chemical -adsorbent drawing in the charged compounds onto the molecules of aluminosilicate compounds that make up the clay...
Salt In Koi Ponds

Salt In Koi Ponds

Most koi keepers know that common table salt has numerous beneficial effects on fish, not least a marked antiparasite activity and the promotion of healing. Some people maintain a permanent low level of salt in their pond. Others add a low level...
Testing Water Quality

Testing Water Quality

How Poor Water Quality Affects The Health Of Your Fish The main factor in successful koi keeping lies in the maintenance of good water quality. pH, ammonia and nitrite levels in the pond should be checked regularly. However, what is seldom...