How much Kalk will be too much?

Servillius

New member
I'm contemplating an auto topoff for my new 57. The total tank volume is 70 gallons and I think I lose in the neighborhood of a gallon or less a day. I want to include kalk in the system, but I know that that can, on occasion, be dangerous. I'm wondering, if my reservoir were say, 5 gallons, is that enough to nuke a tank if the whole thing ends up in my tank? How about 2.5 gallons?
 

JR719

Tang Cop
Premium Member
Yes, no and maybe. Confused? Well, it is one of those times you need to keep track of your parameters. If your PH is low, you can pump the kalk to it. If your PH is high, you'll need to lay off the kalk. Take PH readings at different times of the day, every hour should do it (although some would say 15 minutes or so). If your reading are low, start a drip and monitor it closely. A day off is best as you can keep tabs on it. Start with a drip every couple seconds and check Ph frequently. I would say every couple minutes or so, I have an Aquacontroller so I can just take a quick peek and see the level. If you don't have an electronic controller, I would check at least once a minute for the first hour. Start with a SLOW drip, the PH will jump rapidly. When your lights are off, the PH will go down and your drip should increase. It is a pain in the rear end. Best thing if you have the cash.... Get a calcium reactor and drip kalk.
 

corigan

New member
I would recommend a ph controller if you are going to dose kalk through the top-off. I have a pinpoint on my auto-top off and dose kalk without issues.
 

sedor

New member
Rule of thumb is to add about a 2 teaspoons of Kalk for every gallon...

If you were to dump 2.5 gallons (5 teaspoons of Kalk powder) into your tank at once I don't think you would nuke it, but of course your levels would be off. I would be more concerned about the salinity swing from dumping all that RO water into the tank.
 

Servillius

New member
Rule of thumb is to add about a 2 teaspoons of Kalk for every gallon...

If you were to dump 2.5 gallons (5 teaspoons of Kalk powder) into your tank at once I don't think you would nuke it, but of course your levels would be off. I would be more concerned about the salinity swing from dumping all that RO water into the tank.

The salinity swing would suck, but I don't think it would nuke it either. What I'm trying to guesstimate is how big a reserve to use such that I reduce the odds of the tank getting nuked if fancy gear fails... it will. It seems reasonable to me that about 2.5 gallons should be fairly safe but second opinions on whether I could go for 5 gallons or give up on the idea entirely are always appreciated.
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

Reef Chemist
Premium Member
The most common big problem with overdosing limewater is if you suck any lime solids into the delivery pump. That can add way more than the amount of limewater you might overdose.

Good practice to prevent overdosing is to have the limewater on a float switch, and set the delivery pump so that at the max delivery rate (that is, on 24/7) you are dosing just a bit more than the tank uses each day. :)
 

kimber45

New member
make sure you use a 2 float system.

the aqua lift makes a great top off pump because of it's slow pumping rate.

i use my reef keeper to control my top off pump. that way it will shut it down if my ph gets to high.
 

Capt_Cully

New member
make sure you use a 2 float system.

the aqua lift makes a great top off pump because of it's slow pumping rate.

i use my reef keeper to control my top off pump. that way it will shut it down if my ph gets to high.


same set up here. aqualifter, AC Jr. set to run for 1 minute every 20 minutes, for a continuous dosing versus dumping in more kalkwasser in fewer intervals. Keeps pH more steady.
 

Servillius

New member
The most common big problem with overdosing limewater is if you suck any lime solids into the delivery pump. That can add way more than the amount of limewater you might overdose.

Good practice to prevent overdosing is to have the limewater on a float switch, and set the delivery pump so that at the max delivery rate (that is, on 24/7) you are dosing just a bit more than the tank uses each day. :)

I plan on using a 5 gallon container and setting up a pipe that pulls water from about 50% down the container to keep the solids well away from the intake. I like the idea of a slower pump to keep from dumping too much at once, and I get the feeling the aqualifter is a good choice. Next question then, are the auto topoffs at autotopoff.com recommended, or should I get a JBJ or set up my reefkeeper for auto topoff mode?
 

ludnix

New member
autotopoff.com units are nice and should do the job well. With an aqualifter pump you're going to want to clean it out and replace the tubing regularly. They can clog up much easier than other pumps because of the small 1/4" diameter they are working with.
 
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