Raise my Alk?

carfac

New member
Hi:

REAL Noob here, so please bear with me....

Been noticing a bit of whitening on some corals- most notably some zoas. Color in general is a bit bleached, but some have white spots on their faces... or rings of white (depending on the zoa)...

Anyway, decided to get the test kits out. Ca is OK, maybe a bit high- 490-500. But the Alk worries me, too low. It has always been a bit low- 2.5 to 3 meq/L, but today it came in at 1.5.

pH is 8.1

I use Marin Tropic Pro, and (Always!) RO water. I just mixed in some Oceanic into my salt barrel, so I am probably getting a good mix of that in (just wanted to finish it out).

First, are these two problems related? Second, what can/should I do to raise alk w/o putting everything else out of balance?

Thanks!

Dave
 

bertoni

Premium Member
Many tanks need daily supplementation of calcium and alkalinity. A 2-part like B-Ionic (or its DIY equivalent) is an easy way to get started. This article might help:

http://www.advancedaquarist.com/issues/feb2003/chem.htm

For the moment, some baking soda dissolved in RO-DI water will get alkalinity back up to safe levels. This calculator will help with a dose:

http://home.comcast.net/~jdieck1/chem_calc3.html

I'd dose it up to 3.5 meq/L in two or three shots. The doses can be added fairly quickly. Just give enough time for the supplement to mix thoroughly with the tank water, which should be only a minute or so. The calculator requires a guess at the tank water volume, so do some measuring after a dose or so.
 

carfac

New member
Jonathan:

As always, you are so helpful- gets me going! Looks like I need to add 3 tps (1 tbsp) 0f Baking SODA- added one, will test Alk and pH, and move on again!

Dave
 

carfac

New member
Hmmmm...

Alk went up higher, quicker than I expected. Luckily, I dosed 1/3 total, so nothing is out of hand. I am at 3.5 meq/l, so that is good.... but I dropped pH, to between 8.0 and 8.1. I know that is not too bad, should I raise that? HOW?

Dave
 

carfac

New member
Randy:

Thanks. Tested again this morning, looking good. I will keep an eye on it over the next few days. If I need to raise alk again, I will bake the BS!

If I aim for 3.5 meq/L and 8.1 pH, and I have Ca of 480 or so, does this seem good? What should I aim for?

Dave
 

reefmatenate

New member
you calcium IMO is a little high but fine I noticed you said you use Oceanic salt which is usually low in alk in all the testings I have done mine was around 4dkh just use the calculator and you will be set !
 

bertoni

Premium Member
Be careful about using baked baking soda for large additions. It can spike the pH quite a bit. The small drop from baking soda is usually not much of an issue.
 
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