Need help asap!

PaulTB

New member
I have a 35 hex tank with live rock a puffer/clown fish/ diamond goby it seems that over night for some crazy reason that i cant figure out and it needs to be fixed asap is that my salinity level went from 1.026 to 1.012 >.< and my levels sky rocketed my ammonia my nitrate and nitrite were at 0ppm now there at
ammonia .25 nitrate 20 and nitrite is at 0.50 im currently doing a water change letting the new declorafyed water with reef crystals in it sit for a bit before i put it in the tank i am new to this hobby i cant figure out why all this stuff just sky rocketed any and all help will be greatly appreciated
 

coralsnaked

New member
Don't know why SG would drop, normally goes up as water evaporates. Did you do a water change or add water to system that was not mixed to 1.025 or was plain water. Sounds like you are using TAP water instead of RODI and using some type of dechlorimnater. If water was not properly treated then could be a source of ammonia and hence Trites and then Trates. Or the hypo salinity could have affected your live bacteria. Best chance is to test any saltwater you mix up for SG do a big water change 30% and utilize some Prime in your tank to make harmless the Ammonia already in it. Are you sure about these readings? Did you retest? Did you verify results w/ another testing source?
 

E Rosewater

New member
If you're using a hydrometer for salinity a mis-reading due an air bubble or a stuck arm could be part of the problem.

Also that's a pretty small tank, three fish if added at once, especially if the puffer isn't small could have added too much bioload too quickly for the bio-filtration to keep up with.

And if you're using an API test kit the ammonia could be a false reading.

There is no reason I could possibly think of that would cause the salinity drop, aside from a few things that wouldn't happen outside of a lab.
 

thegrun

Team RC
The first thing you need to do is figure out how or even if your salinity dropped. If you are confident your current salinity readings are correct (if you are using a swing arm hydrometer your readings may be off) a large amount of fresh water had to have been introduced into your tank or your previous readings of 1.026 were incorrect. It is likely the low salinity is causing organisms to die in your tank causing the ammonia levels to rise but as posted above your tap water could also be contributing to your problems. Test your freshly made saltwater for ammonia and nitrates. I would try to get your salinity back up to 1.020 quickly, but raise in back to 1.026 slowly over the course of a couple of days once you reach 1.020. After this current disaster passes it would be a good idea to read up on keeping a saltwater tank, read the stickies at the top of this forum, they offer a wealth of information.
 

devimik

Member
Sounds like it would be difficult to get your salinity from 1.026 to 1.012 overnight - that would probably require replacing almost 18 gallons of SW with fresh water. You might try using a refractometer, which will be more accurate than a hydrometer. Here is a calculator that I've used before that can help when changing salinity levels. Good luck. http://www.saltyzoo.com/SaltyCalcs/SalinityAdjust.php
 

PaulTB

New member
I used a swing arm hydrometer what should I use instead cause when I first checked the levels they were fine now everything changed over night and the fish were put in about 4 3 days apart I did use a little just declorinated water to bring the salinity down it was at about 1.030 I used very little water any suggestions on what I should use for the salinity and when I originally checked the levels with the API everything was at 0ppm I just needed to bring the ph level up a little bit for future corals the ph was at 7.4 :headwalls:
 

devimik

Member
I would use one of these to check salinity. I actually went with the digital one, but it is more expensive. The standard refractometer for seawater doesn't use batteries and is very accurate. http://www.marinedepot.com/Marine_D...tometers-Marine_Depot-MD2101-FITEOPRF-vi.html

If your measurements are accurate, you should do as posted above and get your SG up to, at least, 1.020 as soon as you can. You can use the calculator link I posted to figure out how much water to change and what salinity level to use to get it there.
 

squishifishi

Hopelesly Addicted Member
those cheap glass floating hydrometers are the most effective IMO. anything with moving parts is bound to malfunction at some point.
Have you switched brands of salt recentlyby any chance?
 

hkgar

New member
In order to lower alkalinity from 1.026 to 1.012 ou would need to do a 21 gallon water change. One of your readings, either the high or low, is wrong. Or, both.

The fish will be fine at 1.012 (assuming they made it through - so far. They will not be fine with .25 ammonia.

To get your water back to 35 (if it is indeed that low, you will need to do a 20 gallon water change with water that has a salinity of 51. NOte that I said salinity and not specific gravity.
 

gone fishin

New member
Just out of curiosity how long has the tank been cycled. Did you have any drastic temperature changes this could cause different salinity readings. It does sound like one of your readings is false. If you are using city water it is the time of the year when they flush lines and things change at the treatment plants due to the season changing.
 

PaulTB

New member
friend was helping me set everything up for a while now its very nerve wrecking thats why i figured id join the forums cause there are a lot of people on here that can help me for questions i have =D
 

Sk8r

Staff member
RC Mod
You need a refractometer (salinity instrument: best investment short of a ro/di filter). It takes an expert to run a swing-arm without massive errors. You can adjust water downward safely without killing things, but raising salinity should be done slowly: top off with salt water and that should do it.
And get the refractometer and be sure it's properly calibrated once; it should hold that for a very long time. Instant reading, and right every time.
 

PaulTB

New member
so apparently the kit that i used to check my levels seems to have a huge malfunction im not sure if this is possible or not but i took some water to a local salt water fish store and they tested it and everything was ok besides the ph was a little bit low -_- this is what i want to do to the api tester that i have :uzi:
 

PaulTB

New member
and the salinity they checked its at 1.021 as well so i just ordered a refractor should be here by tomorrow
 
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