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Old 01-01-2006, 10:58 AM   #1
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activated carbon

I have found varying opinions on the use of activated carbon in reef aquariums. What is the genral concensus on this site? Should I or shouldn't I? I will of course be using supplements and use Instant Ocean salt mix.
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Old 01-01-2006, 11:35 AM   #2
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What is the genral concensus on this site?
There isn't one. Many people (myself included) use carbon occasionally. I use it about 1 week per month or less often. If I notice a tint to the water I'll add carbon for a week. Since I've been throwing a poly-filter in the sump compartment I haven't seen the need for the carbon. I replace that filter monthly.

What kind of supplements will you be using and WHY? The general rule is "If you don't test for it, DON'T ADD IT!"
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Old 01-01-2006, 11:49 AM   #3
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I will be using Coral-Vite, but I only test for Calcium. I could not find a test for Strontium at my LFS, or other trace elements except for Iodine. My calcium level was at 300 mg/L this morning, which is too low.
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Old 01-01-2006, 01:59 PM   #4
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Unless you have a huge bioload that is consuming the calcium, regular salt water changes should put it where it should be. IF you cannot find the test kits locally, I would be ordering them. Additives should not be used without testing. What is in the tank that you are adding coral vite?
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Old 01-01-2006, 04:57 PM   #5
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I run Chemi-Pure pretty much all of the time. Two important things with any reef carbon is to change it on a regular basis and rinse it with RO/DI water, not tap, if possible prior to adding fresh carbon to the tank. Heed the advice on reef suppliments. They are really just a waste of money, especially if you are doing regular water changes.
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Old 01-01-2006, 06:11 PM   #6
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I only have some live rock at the moment, but will be adding corals later on. I purchased Sea-Gel from Seachem, but I have not used it yet. The Skilter 250 I am using came with floss media and carbon media. I will wait to change them once the tank is cycled.
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Old 01-01-2006, 06:39 PM   #7
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I would be extra careful adding things with a 20 gallon tank. The smaller the tank, the easier to get things out of whack. Regular water changes will do alot more good for you.
As for the carbon, I run it one week of the month.
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Old 01-01-2006, 06:53 PM   #8
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I haven't added anything yet, but I am concerned about my calcium level. I performed a 5% water change a couple of days ago, but don't want to change alot of water because the tank is still cycling. I think I'll go with the one week a month plan. Should I still use the floss media in the skilter? or just scrap it?
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Old 01-01-2006, 06:58 PM   #9
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I would not change any water until the cycle is complete. Use the floss if you have particles floating around.
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Old 01-01-2006, 08:13 PM   #10
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Also I use coral vite also but if I was you I would not add it to your tank with just LR in it. I put it in mine but I also have dozens of corals in there. Always put less than what it calls for when you do go with corals. But I definiely agree with hara that right now water changes will do more for you than anything else. Save the supplementsfor later when you have many corals
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