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Old 04-01-2014, 08:08 PM   #21
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My calcium stays around 480. I normally know when my alk is low because my ph starts dropping. I have soda ash in my top off reservoir right now to keep my ph and alk where it is. Im not liking this method since it's not very accurate

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Old 04-02-2014, 12:08 PM   #22
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Just make sure your mag is within 1300 when you keep dosing. Your calcium is above the most favored level (380-450) and that explains why your alk wants to stay at 7.2. If you want to raise your alk you would expect your cal to drop down a little.
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Old 04-02-2014, 03:23 PM   #23
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When to start dosing

There can be multiple reasons to start dosing, but be sure it's really needed before starting and start slowly. Calcium can fluctuate without much harm as long as it isn't extreme, but alkalinity is another matter. Rapid changes of it can burn corals and create havoc. My tank is over 20 years old and has never been torn down, so I tend to run a bit acidic if I don't keep alkalinity up. Baking soda or soda ash works perfectly for this. I tend to run alk a bit high, 9-9.5 dKH. But it does help stabilize ph. It's the swings you want to reduce. STABILITY is a word you should stencil above the tank.

But ph swings can be reduced by proper tank ventilation, offsetting sump lighting and a few other things. It takes a lot of hard corals to require dosing along with water exchanges using reef salt. Many never dose at all, but just do significant water exchanges weekly.
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Old 04-02-2014, 04:17 PM   #24
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If you do start, start slow. When i first realized sps were draining my alk and calcuim my numbers were really low. I used a calculator on line to figure out how much calcium and soda ash it would take to get my numbers up. I knew it would take a bit to get my numbers back up but didn't really comprehend how slow to go. I dosed for maybe 2 days and had INSANE cacificiation happen in my tank. I came home from would and my tank walls were white. My water pumps, seized solid. My canister filter, caked with calcium on the inside. It was a disaster. I didn't understand the chemical reaction between the calcium and the alk and that magnesium was the chemical that made them not connect into calcium carbonate. See calcium and sodium bicarbonate (soda ash) are elements that are naturally attacted to each other and react very easily. Magnesium slows them down, kinda gets in the middle of them and doesn't let them connect as easy. Turned out my mag was way too low and I was adding way to much of the other stuff.

Get all 3 tests, get your mag up to 1350 first. Then start adding the alk and calcium until you get all the levels you want...
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Old 04-02-2014, 09:50 PM   #25
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I was looking at this dosing pump on ebay
131148429841.
That's the item number

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Old 04-03-2014, 01:58 PM   #26
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To my understanding the lower the alkalinity, the more acidic it is. While the more magnesium, the better calcium will bind.
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Old 04-03-2014, 02:09 PM   #27
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I think im just going to leave it alone and keep testing for now

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Old 04-03-2014, 05:35 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffaquarius View Post
To my understanding the lower the alkalinity, the more acidic it is. While the more magnesium, the better calcium will bind.
with low mag your cal & alk will bind to form coral but it will be very brittle.
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