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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just a quick overview, I did a water change last Monday and I did my testing for calcium, DKH, phosphate, and nitrate this morning. I use the API reef tests,

I test every week, and up until this morning every thing "seemed" fine, calcium tests out between 400-460 and DKH running around the 8 range.
This morning my calcium was off the charts, and my DKH was 6.

Any suggestion on how to fix this? My first thought was a water change, I use H2ocean salt, but if there is calcium in the salt, would it not bump it up even more? Or am I wrong in that line of thought?

And other than suggesting using a more reliable test kit, can Somebody point me in the right direction?
This would probably explain why I lost half a birdsnest overnight, that was my first clue something was wrong, but all other corals seem ok.

Ugh. Help!!!!!
 

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Check the salinity. Last time I had calcium 500 my salinity was high. My cal sol was old and my readings were wrong. You can find a bottle of salinity cal sol at BA for 5$.

And yes, you can lower the calcium by making a water change.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I did check the salinity, 1.025. In the same range that it always is. Thanks, I do have made up water on standby, I'll go ahead with the water change. Just seems odd that week after week everything tests good, then things go off the deep end.


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First thing you do is throw out the API test kits and get something like the red sea or Salifert kits.

We honestly see this same question about every 3 months or so :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Lol I did the test twice, thinking I put waaayyyy to much baileys in my coffee. Alt, I've been meaning to get real test kits, but what usually happens when I go to my lfs is oohhh, aahhhh look at that frag I get so caught up in the pretty stuff, and when I pull in the driveway at home I smack my forehead cause I didn't pick up good tests. Guilty as charged. Now the pretty coral I bought is stressed. Lesson learned!

Thanks guys, as always :)


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personaly I not a fan of API test kits
get a salifert
test a new batch of freshly made sea- water see if it tests 500,if it does with the api, then check it with salifert,if its still highcontact DD and tell them your findings,is this a new bucket.
if DD brushes you off change salt brands.
oh and if your calcium is high alk will drop
are you adding any calcium

vic
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hi Vic, I've never thought of testing the new water, thanks for that.
I'm not adding anything, calcium or the like, I'm not 100% on dosing so I rely on water changes weekly, I usually do a 10% change on 75 gallons.

I've had the tank for about a year and never encountered an issue like this before. Still a noob, every day I learn something new.


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well ive only got 25 posts so I maybe considered a noob as well.im always learning something new.

your calcium may well be 500 it is possible but you should verify this with a couple of testkits before preceding any farther,dont know which LFS you frequent but you can ask them to check your calcium.

if it is high give manufacter a call,they need to know this,salt is not cheap.
a lot of the salt companies for some reason are adding a lot of calcium,dont quite understand why,when natural seawater is 420 ppm of calcium.
I have found that reefcrystals has boosted there calcium to 460
redsea has done this as well this could possibly be why DD is so high due to it being a glorified redsea salt
vic
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'm in guelph, advanced reef is my lfs, I'm sure Flavio can test. I do have a big als in Kitchener, but well, that's a whole other thread.

I only consider myself a noob because I still have a lot to learn. :)
Yes, salt is not cheap, and if I find the new water that I'm mixing now tests high, I will contact the maker.


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Are you testing at consistent times?

Your pH swinging can cause variances in any parameter. Measure at different times of day, and potentially different readings will result (ie first thing in the morning after the tank has been respiring and making more CO2 versus at the end of the day when all the photosynthetic bacteria have been making oxygen all day)..

Also, if you've recently had a lot of guests, turned on a heater/HVAC/whatever - anything that can change the concentration of gases in your house can also affect the pH of your tank, which in turn can affect the concentration of various ions in your sea water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Now I'm going to take him a Tim's on purpose! :p
oh no. what have I done! ;)

Well Fragalot is at Guelph but I'm not sure if that would be of any help to you.
Probably not, Burc used to live down the street from me ( how dangerous is that????) but moved late last year, I haven't been able to get a hold of him since he moved......
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Are you testing at consistent times?

Your pH swinging can cause variances in any parameter. Measure at different times of day, and potentially different readings will result (ie first thing in the morning after the tank has been respiring and making more CO2 versus at the end of the day when all the photosynthetic bacteria have been making oxygen all day)..

Also, if you've recently had a lot of guests, turned on a heater/HVAC/whatever - anything that can change the concentration of gases in your house can also affect the pH of your tank, which in turn can affect the concentration of various ions in your sea water.
:eek: now that you bring that up, when I had the high calcium/low alk, I tested not even a half hour after the lights came on. I Usually test later in the day after the lights have been on for 4-5 hours or so.

Well, after the water change Saturday..... I tested it after dinner sunday afternoon, and everything tested ok. I am hoping to have an hour in my day today or tomorrow to get PROPER test kits.
 

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My PH can't seem to be higher than 8.0. Usually around 7.7. Because my house is new. Air tight and furnace running. Not a whole lot of fresh air.

My inhabitants seem fine thus far and my other parameters seem normal. The only fluctuation I get is from PH. Nothing else changes though. I created more surface agitation and that seemed to help.


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