My Salifert test is only two months old and the purple color I was referring to is actually the pink color that you were referring to. (to me it looks almost purple-ish, but its not.)
Yesterday was interesting. I mixed new water to do a water change and tested it before I did the water change and the ALK
of the brand new water was HIGHER than the ALK
in my tank. I figured my water was bad so I bought 18 gallons of salt water from another local store and a new RO
system. I did another water change with the good water and mixed another ten gallons with new RO
water. I tested the RO
water after I made it and it was PERFECT. I tested the water in the tank after the water change and it was perfect. Then, I tested the tank again this morning and it was back up to 15!
I think you are EXACTLY right, the salt is/was bad. It was like a concrete block that I had to take a hammer to in order to get usable chunks. I understand now that it should NEVER have been used. That's probably why the guy at the local store GAVE it to me. What an @$$. I guess it is clear why they went out of business.
I think my timing was off, too. I tested the ALK
of the new water before it had time to mix. It still does not explain why the ALK
of the tank this morning was back to 15! Unless that was a timing thing, too. Maybe I tested too early after the water change before it had time to cycle all the way throught he sump. It is lower but just not as much as it was when I tested it after the water change.
I'm pretty sure the scroll coral is dead. You be the judge. I loaded pics. I'm going to buy new salt tomorrow and hopefully nothing else will die before I have a chance to use it. I'm told to wait a few more days before doing any more water changes. Hopefully, adding RO
replacement water will keep me going until I can do another decent water change.
Thank you for your advice. I'll let you know how it goes. Hopefully, this will be the beginning of the road to recovery.