View Full Version : kH questions

12/07/2009, 05:52 PM
So i just tested my water and numbers are as follows:
SG 1.026, nitrate 0, phos 0, cal 480, pH 8.2 and kH at 5. I use reef crystal salt for 20% water changes at least every 2 weeks sometimes more often. The test kits are api and a little over a year old. i dont have a mag test kit. Lately some of my sps are turning white around the base. a couple could be suffering from encroachment, but the purple tyree monti, which has never been a good grower, is dying around the edges. On the other hand i have a monti cap and a ORA stylo that are still growing rapidly and look great.

So my questions are can i use 1 part of my 2 part solution to raise my kH? which 1 is it? I use 2 little fishies AandB. Do you think kh is my problem? I have been doing such frequent water changes that i stopped using my 2 part for a long time. I started using it again when I noticed that the acros weren't improving. Also, could my monti cap be harming my acropora. the monti cap is white right where it grew at the acropora and died about a 1/4 in away from it's now dead base. the rest of the monti cap looks great. I'll try to post pics if anyone thinks it could help. Thanks guys.

12/08/2009, 12:49 PM
Yes, you can use the alk additive from your 2-part to bring up the kH. The alk part of the 2-part will feel a little soapy to the touch. Try the reef chemistry calculator (http://jdieck1.home.comcast.net/~jdieck1/chemcalc.html) to figure out how much to add. Just do it over a couple of days so you don't spike your pH. The higher kH will help minimize the pH swings of the tank, too, which might be contributing to your coral trouble.

Montis are generally wusses in the coral warfare dept. It's more likely that the acro killed back part of the monti.

You might also check your temperature swings throughout the day - too big a variance will stress your corals, and lots of fellow reefers down here in Texas are dealing with it now that we've finally gotten some colder weather.

Hopefully some other heads wiser than mine will chime in for you as well. Good luck!

12/08/2009, 12:54 PM
although your calcium isnt extremely high, its slightly high, but not a worry, however it may be worth checking your magnesium level, if thats ok then some baking soda to raise the alk will be sufficient in your case.

12/08/2009, 01:03 PM
calcium will drop slightly as you bring up your alkalinity. I would recommend getting some good quality test kits, such as elos or salifert. They are worth their weight in gold once you get into sps. Also, your magnesium is most likely fine since you change your water quite often as long as you dont have a huge amount of sps in your tank, but a magnesium test kit should at least be on your lit of purchases

12/08/2009, 04:18 PM
If your API dkh kit is over a year old I would not trust it. Better to get another and be sure of the reading.

12/08/2009, 04:33 PM
You definitely want to get your dkh up to at least 8 (I prefer 8-9). Your SPS should improve a good bit.

Make the adjustment over the course of a couple days.

I feel keeping your dkh stable is extremely important when keeping SPS. Not too high, not too low.

12/08/2009, 04:44 PM
Water changes are good, no doubt about it. However, alot of people start doing large % water changes and forget to match the new water perimters with the old water.......they watch as their love isn't matched by the tank. Just remember to bring the new water's dKH and Ca up to the level of the tank before you start.

It's sounds like your problem is your KH is bouncing around and the SPS are going to stress and discolor. By all means, use the single part to bring up KH, but incrementally. Slowly.

Hope this helps.

Peter Eichler
12/08/2009, 04:48 PM
If your API dkh kit is over a year old I would not trust it. Better to get another and be sure of the reading.

I've got a 10+ year old API alkalinity kit and I test it against my other kits every now and then for kicks, it's still accurate... It's going to take a heck of a lot longer than a year for a typical single reagent liquid titration kit to go bad unless it's been stored in really harsh conditions and left open.