Skimmer on a small tank

Arizonah13

New member
Would adding a Tunze skimmer (the nano version) on my 29g tank end up skimming all the good stuff out of my water? (i.e. calcium, mg, etc)

On the other hand, would it help with phosphates and nitrates?

I don't have too many corals, but would/should I start dosing Part A/B, magnesium, etc if I add the skimmer? (providing I test for those first/regularly of course)

I purchased the skimmer months ago and haven't put it into use on my tank yet, so just trying to get some input from the pros. :)

Thanks.
 

bertoni

Premium Member
The skimmer might help with phosphate and nitrate control. Usually, they do, anyway. It won't do any harm. The two-part calcium and alkalinity supplements are independent of the skimmer. The only way to tell whether and when they're needed is testing.
 

Arizonah13

New member
Oh, how frequently in your opinion should I test calcium, alk, etc... ?

I tested the calcium for the first time in a long while and it was around 440-460 - does that seem high? I have never dosed in the past (nor do I have any particularly calcium-sucking corals)
 

Arizonah13

New member
That's a little too low. I would supplement it with Kent super dkh.
There is a dosing calculator in the top post of this forum.
You should target for 8.0 dkH

Thanks for the advice! My pH usually gets up to about 8.5 by the time the lights go out at night (and lowers to around 8.0-8.1 come morning). I checked the Alk. in the evening when the pH was in its upper range - are those two related? For instance, if I were to check the alk in the morning, do you think it would be closer to 8.0? If so, should I still consider dosing with the Kent Super dkh?

Thanks again - I appreciate any/all suggestions!
 

Arizonah13

New member
...and I just checked Marine Depot - would you suggest Kent's SuperBuffer or Pro Buffer? (or are they basically the same?)
 

Aquarist007

New member
Thanks for the advice! My pH usually gets up to about 8.5 by the time the lights go out at night (and lowers to around 8.0-8.1 come morning). I checked the Alk. in the evening when the pH was in its upper range - are those two related? For instance, if I were to check the alk in the morning, do you think it would be closer to 8.0? If so, should I still consider dosing with the Kent Super dkh?

Thanks again - I appreciate any/all suggestions!

pH is affected usually by levels of carbon dioxide in and around the fish tank,
Alkalinity is not directly related to pH however using some buffers to raise the the alkalinity can raise the pH also and visa versa.
 

Aquarist007

New member
...and I just checked Marine Depot - would you suggest Kent's SuperBuffer or Pro Buffer? (or are they basically the same?)

I make it a practise not to use any product that is not listed on the chemical dosing calculator then I am sure of how much the product will raise the parameter I am targeting and how much of a daily increase I am allowed to make
 

Arizonah13

New member
Since my pH already tops out at about 8.5, should I still try to raise the alk? I want whatever would be best for my tank, but I fear raising the alk would also raise the pH (and it already gets about as high as I'm comfortable with).

Having said that, if I use something to boost the alk, should I also do some sort of ph buffer (btw, does a "buffer" lower or raise the ph?)

I just don't want to end up having to dose a dozen different things in an attempt to keep things stable. (if I can help it anyway)

Once again, I appreciate all advice. :) Thanks again!
 

Aquarist007

New member
Ahh - how much baking soda would you recommend? (29 gallon tank) And with what frequency?

:)

refer to the dosing calculator.

You need to measure (first) calcium, alkalinity and magnesium.
These need to be in acceptable ranges, not a specific number
calcium 390 to 420 ppm
magnesium 1300 to 1400 ppm
alkalinity 8.0 to 8.5 dkH

In other words your frequency of dosing will be determined by the the range that your alkalinity stays in.

If you find yourself constantly having to raise your alkalinity then you should consider a two part dosing system like B-ionics two part.

Also using a salt mixture like Reef Crystals will help keep your alkalinity in the acceptable range
 

Aquarist007

New member
Since my pH already tops out at about 8.5, should I still try to raise the alk? I want whatever would be best for my tank, but I fear raising the alk would also raise the pH (and it already gets about as high as I'm comfortable with).

Having said that, if I use something to boost the alk, should I also do some sort of ph buffer (btw, does a "buffer" lower or raise the ph?)

I just don't want to end up having to dose a dozen different things in an attempt to keep things stable. (if I can help it anyway)

Once again, I appreciate all advice. :) Thanks again!

baking soda will raise the alkalinty but not the pH so IMO in your case you are better to use it rather then Kent Superbuffer dkH
 

Arizonah13

New member
refer to the dosing calculator.

You need to measure (first) calcium, alkalinity and magnesium.
These need to be in acceptable ranges, not a specific number
calcium 390 to 420 ppm
magnesium 1300 to 1400 ppm
alkalinity 8.0 to 8.5 dkH

In other words your frequency of dosing will be determined by the the range that your alkalinity stays in.

If you find yourself constantly having to raise your alkalinity then you should consider a two part dosing system like B-ionics two part.

Also using a salt mixture like Reef Crystals will help keep your alkalinity in the acceptable range

I literally *just* switched to Reef Crystals (and have done 1 water change with it so far) so this is good!

baking soda will raise the alkalinty but not the pH so IMO in your case you are better to use it rather then Kent Superbuffer dkH

I see - thank you for the advice!
 

a.browning

New member
A skimmer will not remove calcium, magnesium or alkalinity. That is a myth. You wouldn't have to start using A/B because of the skimmer, but if you add corals then you may need to as demand for calcium and alkalinity increases. I normally test once a week. I used to test 2 times a week, but now that I know what my parameters are at, I don't need the second test.

I also would recommend baking soda. That is the only supplement I have ever used for alkalinity. In my 55, I used to dose about a tsp to raise alk by 1 dkh. I would never buy the "marine buffers" that they sell at fish stores, the majority of them are just sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) but with an expensive price tag.
 
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