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Old 04-04-2013, 12:49 PM   #1
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I think I destroyed my tank

Ughhhh!!!!!!

I did a water change yesterday. Against my better judgement, I bought unsalted RO water and salted it my self. Two things then happened. After adding salt, I tested and tested and tested. I also added Kent Super buffer to the water. Well, after not paying attention, I added to my tank. The buffer did not dissolve correctly because of the salt water. My tank turned all milky. I tested the Salinity and it read 1.30 from 1.24. I did another water change, this time just fresh. This morning, I get up and all the corals look extremely bad, my wrasse, fire shrimp and possibly all my snails are dead. The rest of the inverts that I can see, appear to be alive but are not moving. My clowns are just hovering at the bottom of the tank. No ammonia, nitrites or nitrates. Salinity is about 1.24. HELP ME!
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Old 04-04-2013, 05:12 PM   #2
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Id say put everything that's alive in buckets and 100% water change the bb will colonise back quickly it's in the LR
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Old 04-04-2013, 05:39 PM   #3
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Good lesson as to why you should mix your water in advance, I do mine 24 hours before the water change to make sure things are ok.

In this case, mix up more water for water changes and get your tanks system under control ASAP.
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Old 04-04-2013, 11:02 PM   #4
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Well, two water changes later, the salinity is up (from 1.20) to 1.22-23. I cleaned all the hardened buffer build up on the glass and tried to get it all off the corals. the alkalinity was over 16. It's down to around 14 -15 before my last water change. PH is stable at 8.0-8.1. He fish seem more active now but the inverts are not yet. Corals are no where near what they should be.
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Old 04-05-2013, 12:42 AM   #5
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There is nothing wrong with very high alkalanity. It will not hurt anything.
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Old 04-05-2013, 12:43 AM   #6
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So based on what I told you, what do you think killed my fish and some of the invertebrates? The raise and drop in salinity?
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Old 04-05-2013, 03:26 AM   #7
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I can't say for sure I don't use a buffer
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Old 04-05-2013, 03:52 AM   #8
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The quick rise and drop of the salinity probably did it. Inverts and corals cant take a rapid rise and drop of salinity. As mentioned above always wait 24-48 hours before adding the water to your tank. Do water test before you add also.
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Old 04-05-2013, 08:18 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ingy View Post
There is nothing wrong with very high alkalanity. It will not hurt anything.
I totally disagree with this. High alkalinity is more than likely what cause the precipitation event (water got milky). By adding a buffer to the fresh mix, the alk was pushed past the super saturation point and precipitated out of solution. High alkalinity also can burn many corals. Natural seawater on most reefs is 7 dKH. The recommended alk level for a reef tank is 7 dKH to 11 dKH. Pushing alk any higher can lead to precipation events and coral burning. I would never suggest anyone keep their alk any higher than the recommended levels.

I agree with Mike that the rapid rise and fall of the salinity also played a factor in the fish and corals health.
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Old 04-05-2013, 10:31 AM   #10
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Sounds like you did not let the salt disolve in the ro water long enough and it shocked the tank proubly burning the fishes gills and killing the inverts which are very sensitive to salinity changes...
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