I thought I'd throw an update out there for those of you that care.
I have finally been able to get my water parameters under better control. I won't say it is under control yet but things have certainly improved.
One of the first things I did what buy a Pinpoint PH meter which I keep constantly running in my sump so I can monitor the PH. After the big PH spike finally settled down, my PH was down to around 8.1 and has remained in that area ever since with the assistance of some buffer. Each morning the PH is always a bit lower. I'm still trying to get things to balance out. Nitrates are still in the 40ppm range so I am still doing pwc
's to bring that down.
I also purchased a 6 stage RO
unit and started making a bunch of water for the changes. I was a little surprised at how the RO
unit worked at first as it appears to waste sooooooo much water down the drain. The nice thing is that I am now making water that has a TDS
of only 1 ppm
(I got a TDS
meter, too) so I now know that I'm not pumping nitrates into the tank from my tap water.
On of my other problems which I was ignoring for a long time was the fact that I had a really crappy skimmer. When I first got started with SW
, I bought a Seaclone 150 skimmer and while it would occasionally work, it is very finicky and the general impression from people is that it is a terrible skimmer. So, today I wen and sprang for an AquaC EV-180 with a Mag7 pump. It should be here Friday. It probably seems like way too much skimmer, but at this point, I don't want to ever have to buy another skimmer for a really long time, even when I upgrade my tank again (which is inevitable in this hobby, I can see that now).
My last real remaining problem is that my cyano
bloom is back. While the PH spike appeared to kill it all, it has come back in full force. Getting the nitrates down should start to help, as well as the new skimmer to get rid of DOCs. We shall see.
So, I'm now spending the money on things that I really should have spent a while ago. Hopefully it will get my tank's health where it needs to be. My corals appear to be doing much better now, except for the mushrooms which really got shocked by the PH. Hopefully they will come back. My solitary green button polyp has spawned two additional polyps before it suddenly started to deteriorate. The whole head withered away but the stalk remained. Now that the water parameters are much better, it has begun regrowing the head. This is really cool to see. The anemones are also still doing well. I actually moved them to a bucket of the old water while the tank was getting back to normal. They are back in the tank and seem no worse for wear. The clowns really missed them.
Thanks to everyone that offered advice. It was much appreciated