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Old 08/26/2017, 07:12 PM   #251
bertoni
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As I recall, some discoloration is normal. Is the tubing clogging? You could try running a bit of bleach through a small piece of the tubing, if there's enough spare to allow cutting a sample, to see whether the buildup is organic. I'd discard the piece of tubing afterward.


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Old 08/26/2017, 07:51 PM   #252
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As I recall, some discoloration is normal. Is the tubing clogging? You could try running a bit of bleach through a small piece of the tubing, if there's enough spare to allow cutting a sample, to see whether the buildup is organic. I'd discard the piece of tubing afterward.
I cut a piece of the stained tubing and the white is permanent, it does not come out, does not seem to be organic buildup. The staining is almost immediate, let's say after a couple of hours of constant contact with the vinegar.


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Old 08/27/2017, 05:04 PM   #253
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My guess is that the acid is breaking down the plastic, but the effect might take a long time to be a problem. There are various kinds of tubing available from lab suppliers like Cole-Parmer, if you want to look into something that will be more resistant. I can't guess how long it might take for the plastic to become brittle enough to break. Breakage should be the only danger in this situation.


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Old 08/27/2017, 05:54 PM   #254
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Thank you Jonathan.


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Old 08/27/2017, 06:15 PM   #255
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You're welcome. Good luck!


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Old 12/29/2017, 08:04 PM   #256
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I'm currently dosing about 20ml of vinegar daily (distributed in many small doses during daylight period using dosing pump) to my 20 gallon tank (with 5 gallon sump). I was previously dosing NOPOX, then DIY NOPOX (vodka + vinegar mix) and switched to vinegar about 4 months ago in order to use the dosing pump.

The thing is that I'm not being able to find the balance. Here are my parameters:

Phosphate: 0.02ppm (Hanna ULR Phosphorus Checker)
Nitrate: 5+ ppm
KH: 8.2 dKH

Algae seems to be very controlled, still some growing on the back glass, overflow box, return nozzle and some little on rock. Mostly taken care by a sea urchin.

Issues:
1. Getting cyanobacteria on sandbed and glass.

2. KH Related: I have noticed that if I let it raise above 9.5 - 10 dKH, then my SPS coral, specially Mystic Sunset does not like it. It starts to burn or die (white spots). A little birds nest frag died. Once I get the KH back down to 8.2, most SPS recovers. Montipora Capricornis is also affected, but not as much as the Mystic Sunset and birds nest.

3. Overall, coral are not growing. Some LPS are even shrinking a bit.

I feed every other day some little bit of Reef Roids and once a week a couple cc of Red Sea Reef Energy A & B mix. Also, I have Kalkwasser in my ATO water. pH is monitored constantly via Apex.

Any thoughts?



Last edited by rsucre; 12/29/2017 at 08:09 PM.
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Old 12/29/2017, 08:18 PM   #257
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That's a fairly large dose, from what I can tell. I'd be tempted to cut back on it. The corals might be reacting to organics in the water or the low phosphate level. What's in the system? Maybe there's too much food going into the tank.


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Old 12/29/2017, 08:29 PM   #258
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Hi Jonathan,

I don't think there is too much food, because I have cut it down a lot in the last month or even longer. I'm feeding the fish very little and only once a day. And as I mentioned before, very little (less than 1/4 teaspoon) of Reef Roids every other day.

The tank has 2 small clowns, 1 midas blenny, 1 red blood shrimp. And many coral: LPS, SPS, zoas, etc.


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Old 12/29/2017, 08:44 PM   #259
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I'm going to check the calibration of my dosing pump tomorrow, just in case. One additional thing to comment is that I have never seen white slime or white film on the glass or rock or anything indicating bacterial bloom.


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Old 12/29/2017, 09:59 PM   #260
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tsp of Reef Roids sounds like a lot of food for a 20g system. I'd cut that at least in half. How much live rock is in the system?


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Old 12/29/2017, 10:43 PM   #261
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rsucre View Post
I'm currently dosing about 20ml of vinegar daily (distributed in many small doses during daylight period using dosing pump) to my 20 gallon tank (with 5 gallon sump). I was previously dosing NOPOX, then DIY NOPOX (vodka + vinegar mix) and switched to vinegar about 4 months ago in order to use the dosing pump.

The thing is that I'm not being able to find the balance. Here are my parameters:

Phosphate: 0.02ppm (Hanna ULR Phosphorus Checker)
Nitrate: 5+ ppm
KH: 8.2 dKH

Algae seems to be very controlled, still some growing on the back glass, overflow box, return nozzle and some little on rock. Mostly taken care by a sea urchin.

Issues:
1. Getting cyanobacteria on sandbed and glass.

2. KH Related: I have noticed that if I let it raise above 9.5 - 10 dKH, then my SPS coral, specially Mystic Sunset does not like it. It starts to burn or die (white spots). A little birds nest frag died. Once I get the KH back down to 8.2, most SPS recovers. Montipora Capricornis is also affected, but not as much as the Mystic Sunset and birds nest.

3. Overall, coral are not growing. Some LPS are even shrinking a bit.

I feed every other day some little bit of Reef Roids and once a week a couple cc of Red Sea Reef Energy A & B mix. Also, I have Kalkwasser in my ATO water. pH is monitored constantly via Apex.

Any thoughts?
So I dose vinegar mixed with my kalk through the ATO. I was told by fellow reefers in my area that the carbon dosing takes a lot of nutrients out of the water and you are best to keep KH down in the 7-7.5 range and you have to feed!! I do this and I feed heavily.
Daily:
10ml of phyto,
1 cube of marine feast
3 ml each RedSea A and B
1/4 tsp of Coral Frenzy
1/4 tsp TDO
Generous helping of Rotifers/Pods
And every other day I tweezer feed 3 small shrimp to the crab/brittle stars. My coral growth is really taking off (LPS, SPS, and softies) and I have no algae issues. Also no nitrates or phosphates (or at least not detectable with my test kit)
Cheers! Mark


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Old 12/30/2017, 09:29 AM   #262
rsucre
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daddi0 View Post
So I dose vinegar mixed with my kalk through the ATO. I was told by fellow reefers in my area that the carbon dosing takes a lot of nutrients out of the water and you are best to keep KH down in the 7-7.5 range and you have to feed!! I do this and I feed heavily.
Daily:
10ml of phyto,
1 cube of marine feast
3 ml each RedSea A and B
1/4 tsp of Coral Frenzy
1/4 tsp TDO
Generous helping of Rotifers/Pods
And every other day I tweezer feed 3 small shrimp to the crab/brittle stars. My coral growth is really taking off (LPS, SPS, and softies) and I have no algae issues. Also no nitrates or phosphates (or at least not detectable with my test kit)
Cheers! Mark
Hi Mark. How are your Nitrates?

How is the process of dosing vinegar with your ATO water with Kalk? I heard that dissolving vinegar in water could cause bacterial growth in the solution. Also, how do you adjust the dose? Have to throw away all your ato water in order to adjust? Also, your carbon dosing will vary depending on evaporation. For instance, you are dosing more in hot/dry days.


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Old 12/30/2017, 10:37 AM   #263
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Something that is very predictable in my tank, because it has happened a few times, is that if KH raises above 9 dKH, then my SPS reacts badly (white/burned areas on mystic sunset montipora, montipora capricornis not as colored and polyps not showing, birds nest death). Once the KH goes back down closer to 8 dKH, montis recover.

I'm tempted of trying even lower KH, lets say 7.8 dKH or so.

My other issues are:
1. I still have brown cyanobacteria on the sand and glass.
2. LPS (specially euphyllia) are not growing. Most noticeably a Candy cane is receeding and a wall hammer too. Frogspawn and torch not as noticeably, but not growing too much.

Perhaps issue #2 is totally unrelated to carbon dosing and KH.

Regarding issue #1 (cyano), what baffles me is that the issue persists with a high dose of vinegar that I'm using (as pointed out by Jonathan) and PO4 of 0.02 ppm. Nitrate is a little bit high at 5 ppm, but still, I would expect the cyano to slow down a bit.

So something must be wrong here...

Jonathan, I use a very small plastic spoon to measure the Reef Roids, similar to the one that comes with Phytoplan. I compared with my kitchen measuring spoons and I'm dosing closer to 1/8 teaspoon or less every other day. And a little bit of that goes to my 10 gallon tank, so it is even less.

Actually, I'm thinking that the issue with LPS not growing could be that I'm not feeding enough. But then the Nitrate at 5 ppm!


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Old 12/30/2017, 10:49 AM   #264
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Hi Mark. How are your Nitrates?

How is the process of dosing vinegar with your ATO water with Kalk? I heard that dissolving vinegar in water could cause bacterial growth in the solution. Also, how do you adjust the dose? Have to throw away all your ato water in order to adjust? Also, your carbon dosing will vary depending on evaporation. For instance, you are dosing more in hot/dry days.
My nitrates are 0. For the vinegar in the kalk, my current recipe is to add 60ml of vinegar to a beaker, add 1/2tsp. of Kalk and mix well. This gets a complete chemical reaction and allows the Kalk to fully dissolve. I then pour the beaker into 1 gallon of R/O and mix well and add to my ATO. the PH from the Kalk in my ATO is high enough to stop bacteria. If I want to make an adjustment, I just change the recipe a little and add it to the ATO.
Cheers! Mark


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Old 12/30/2017, 04:13 PM   #265
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Something that is very predictable in my tank, because it has happened a few times, is that if KH raises above 9 dKH, then my SPS reacts badly (white/burned areas on mystic sunset montipora, montipora capricornis not as colored and polyps not showing, birds nest death). Once the KH goes back down closer to 8 dKH, montis recover.
A number of people report a similar problem with higher dKH levels. Dropping the level in your tank to 7.8-8 dKH should be fine. I don't think anyone is sure about exactly why corals can have problems at the higher dKH levels.
Quote:
My other issues are:
1. I still have brown cyanobacteria on the sand and glass.
2. LPS (specially euphyllia) are not growing. Most noticeably a Candy cane is receeding and a wall hammer too. Frogspawn and torch not as noticeably, but not growing too much.
Different tanks respond differently, but your tank might see less cyanobacteria with some vodka in the mix. Unfortunately, it might also see more cyanobacteria. There's no way to predict.

The coral recession could be cause by a number of problems. I'd be worried about organics from the food going into the tank, but the carbon dosing might be the cause, or part of the cause.

Quote:
Regarding issue #1 (cyano), what baffles me is that the issue persists with a high dose of vinegar that I'm using (as pointed out by Jonathan) and PO4 of 0.02 ppm. Nitrate is a little bit high at 5 ppm, but still, I would expect the cyano to slow down a bit.
Our tanks always manage to surprise us. Remember that a lot of people see a lot of cyanobacterial growth with phosphate and nitrate measuring zero. The microbes were consuming the nutrients as they were released.

Quote:
Jonathan, I use a very small plastic spoon to measure the Reef Roids, similar to the one that comes with Phytoplan. I compared with my kitchen measuring spoons and I'm dosing closer to 1/8 teaspoon or less every other day. And a little bit of that goes to my 10 gallon tank, so it is even less.

Actually, I'm thinking that the issue with LPS not growing could be that I'm not feeding enough. But then the Nitrate at 5 ppm!
How much food a tank's filtration can handle will vary a lot. The source of the nitrate will be the food, in some ultimate sense. Trapped, decaying organic debris can produce a lot of nitrate in a system that otherwise would be in good shape, but I don't think that's the case here. I had that problem with a crushed coral substrate. The crushed coral hit the garbage can in short order.

As far as the LPS problems, a bit of target feeding might help if you think they are underfed. Just take a bit of the Reef Roids and see whether you can get the corals to take it. The issue might be the carbon dosing or organics, though, as I mentioned above.


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Old 12/30/2017, 07:57 PM   #266
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I measured the amount of vinegar dosed today and it was very close to 20ml, so there is no calibration issue. I lowered the daily dose to 16ml.

I know there is no magic number and it all depends on so many factors, but what daily dose do you have in mind as an average for a 20 - 25 gallon tank that is fully stocked and fully cycled (> 1 year old)?


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Old 12/30/2017, 09:53 PM   #267
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My main reason to dose vinegar is to reduce PH. My reef is in the garage with lots of fresh air and I dose Kalk. Without vinegar, my PH would easily rise above 8.5 By adding 60ml to my Kalk, I can keep the PH at a range of 8.25-8.48 If I add more vinegar, I get bacteria that looks like snot growing on the pumps. So this is my upper limit.
Cheers! Mark


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Old 12/31/2017, 10:06 AM   #268
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My main reason to dose vinegar is to reduce PH. My reef is in the garage with lots of fresh air and I dose Kalk. Without vinegar, my PH would easily rise above 8.5 By adding 60ml to my Kalk, I can keep the PH at a range of 8.25-8.48 If I add more vinegar, I get bacteria that looks like snot growing on the pumps. So this is my upper limit.
Cheers! Mark
Interesting... I have seen something similar to a beige color "snot" in some areas of my sump. Specially in the baffles before the return pump and a little bit in the return pump section. Not enough to consider it an issue and none in the display.


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Old 12/31/2017, 01:26 PM   #269
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I know there is no magic number and it all depends on so many factors, but what daily dose do you have in mind as an average for a 20 - 25 gallon tank that is fully stocked and fully cycled (> 1 year old)?
That's an interesting question, and I agree that we don't have a very good handle on this. Personally, I think your dose already is one of the higher ones of which I've heard, but my memory might be playing tricks on me.


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Old 12/31/2017, 01:31 PM   #270
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That's an interesting question, and I agree that we don't have a very good handle on this. Personally, I think your dose already is one of the higher ones of which I've heard, but my memory might be playing tricks on me.
Hi Jonathan,

Take a look at this table. I understand it was created by "Genetics", based on the previously existing Vodka dosing table by Randy.

Am I interpreting wrong? I see much larger doses at the end of the table for 25 gallons.




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Old 12/31/2017, 01:36 PM   #271
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Argh! I think I looked at the vodka chart. Sigh! You are correct. The 25g is for 25g of actual water volume, I think, so I'd guess your tank is significantly less than that.

You can increase the dose. The table does seem to be very conservative, but people do report problems at lower levels. There are a lot of variables involved, so some caution is in order.


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Old 12/31/2017, 01:40 PM   #272
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Argh! I think I looked at the vodka chart. Sigh! You are correct. The 25g is for 25g of actual water volume, I think, so I'd guess your tank is significantly less than that.

You can increase the dose. The table does seem to be very conservative, but people do report problems at lower levels. There are a lot of variables involved, so some caution is in order.
Thank you Jonathan. So I may increase it from 20ml to 24ml lets say.... And see what happens with Phosphate and Nitrate? My worry is that Phosphate is already 0.02ppm. But I want to lower that Nitrate from 5+ to at least 2 ppm. There is a lot of cyano on sand and glass; and little algae growing in some places, so Phosphate must be higher than that, just being consumed.


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Old 12/31/2017, 02:18 PM   #273
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Well, unfortunately, the only way to tell what's going to happen is to give it a try. I'd watch very carefully for signs of bacterial slime and coral problems, though. You might end up need to dose a bit of phosphate at some point, but I wouldn't worry about that just yet. Cyanobacterial infestations can be tricky to kill without harming corals.


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Old 12/31/2017, 04:38 PM   #274
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I would say your are safe to increase your dose. Personally I would only increase it a ml a day (instead of a large dosage change) this will allow the bacteria to grow at a more controlled rate instead of an explosion, and keep a sharp eye on your reef and parameters. If you see issues, cut the dosing by 1ml a day (then you wont have a huge bacterial die off) Other than a bloom being unsightly, it wont hurt the reef unless it depletes all of the oxygen. I test my PH twice a day figuring if my oxygen is being depleted by bacteria, I would see a rapid drop in PH. I havent seen this but I do have great flow and a lot of surface water movement.
When I got a lot of snot in my reef, I just backed my dose down a bit and it slowly went away.
On a side note, my sand was covered in cyano prior to vinegar/kalk, and now none. No GHA either.
Cheers! Mark


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Old 12/31/2017, 05:31 PM   #275
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Thanks to both of you Mark and Jonathan. I will increase the dose slowly and see how it goes.

And Happy New Year!


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