Cal and Alk out of whack

Discussion in 'The Reef Tank' started by phatstanley02, Apr 25, 2006.

  1. phatstanley02

    phatstanley02 Ko-Ko Worm

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    well since Ive been buffering my PH (which also raises alk) my alk and cal are way out of whack. Alk is at 15 dkh and cal is at 290. What is the best way to get them back in line? turbo calcium?
     
  2. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    I say water changes.
     
  3. Kirk_M

    Kirk_M Chevron Tang LARC Supporter

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    Why is your pH so out of whack that you have to buffer it every few hours? What salt are you using? Have you used the SAME bucket since restarting your tank? A while ago, there was a thread on RC in which a guy had received a defective bucket of IO salt...killed his tank...he tested a batch of fresh-made water and his alk was like 25 dKH or something wild like that. If you're using the same bucket since restarting your tank, test a fresh-made sample and see if either the pH and/or alk comes out low. Then let it stir for a few days, closed with no air exposure, and if your alk and/or pH drops a lot, you may have a bad batch.

    Are you using a Calcium reactor? If so, is your effluent pH too low to be safe? That could drop your pH as well.
     
  4. phatstanley02

    phatstanley02 Ko-Ko Worm

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    Ok i used the last of a previous bucket to fill this tank with salt, then got a new bucket. It has always tested low for PH (despite my PH from my ro being in the 9's) I used that for several water changes to no avail. I just did a water change with reef crystals (which mixed to a PH of almost 8.1 after 24 hours) and now the PH doesnt drop as low at night (hasnt gone below 7.82). I dunno if this is due to the fact that ive added so much buffer or the fact that i did a 20% change with water at a higher PH. I am running a calcium reactor with the effluent at about 6.28-6.30 and about 60 drips a min with koralith media.

    The High alk is definately due to the usage of the buffer, and i figured using turbo calcium over the next few weeks would fix that problem. right?
     
  5. southerncoralfarms

    southerncoralfarms Black Perc

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    Jeff,

    If you are having an effluent that low, has your calcium reactor media turned to mush? If it still looks normal, I would poke something into it to see. If it has gotten mushy, then it will produce way too much calcium hydroxide and will buffer then tank too much, which will bind up all of your free usable calcium, which is why you have such an incredibly low calcium level. IMO, you should cut down on the CO2 and speed up the drips of the reactor.... First, I would probably change the media, do a water change and run carbon for a little while. Also, do you have an ORP reading that you can share with us? If I was a betting man, I would say that it probably dropped.
     
  6. phatstanley02

    phatstanley02 Ko-Ko Worm

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    My media isnt mush and it doesnt turn to mush. And the low PH has nothing to do with th reactor, Ive had the PH problems much longer than ive had the reactor. I dont really have anything in my tank using calcium, especially not enough to drop it that low. The low calcium is an inverse swing from the elevated alkalinity from the PH buffer
     
  7. phatstanley02

    phatstanley02 Ko-Ko Worm

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    Oh and my CO2 rate is 1 drip ever 2 seconds
     
  8. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    To get right to your question ... turbo cal works great for me when things get a little out of whack. I let it dissolve in FW before adding it since it can scorch stuff.

    Don't be suprised if you see some trouble from these alk swings. I'd expect to see something in my tank with a swing like that. Go as painfully slow as you can. I know you know that ... but my goodness ... 15dkh!!!!!

    What kind of salt are you using and have you switched it up since running this tank?

    I'm using IO from Delta. I'll check the PH and alk of a fresh batch of SW I made last night and let you know what I see (although it's possible that we're on different water lines).

    I'm not sure if there's anything you can do to help PH that doesn't raise ALK. Anybody know of anything?
     
  9. phatstanley02

    phatstanley02 Ko-Ko Worm

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    I just changed to reef crystals from oceanic, all from delta. So far ive seen no adverse affects except for precipitation.
     
  10. Kirk_M

    Kirk_M Chevron Tang LARC Supporter

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    Jeff,

    Did you ever get things resolved? Hadn't seen you post in a while... how about the algae problem you were having?
     
  11. phatstanley02

    phatstanley02 Ko-Ko Worm

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    alk is resolved and i got a spotted foxface that DEVOURED all the hair algae, (left thousands of the biggest fish turds ive ever seen in the midst) now the only problem that is left unresolved is the low PH issue. It still goes as low as 7.71 at night and usually doesnt go over 8.0 during the day. Im still at a loss for this part.
     

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