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Old 04/19/2018, 06:40 AM   #1
accel
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Kalkwasser Dosing with ATO

I'm about to buy an ATO system and Kalkwasser to maintain my Calcium levels and PH.

The last time I checked my paramd are:
PH 8.2
Dkh 9
Calcium 420

According to the BRS site, I need to add 2 teaspoons of Kalkwasser per 1 gallon of RODI top off water. So if my ATO container is 5 gallons, I should be mixing 5 teaspoons of Kalkwasser. Literally 1 teaspoon per gallon.

At 420 Calcium how can I make sure I am maintaing it at that level using an ATO system? I'd probably want to go at 450 and improve my Dkh at 10. From what I have read my values are perfectly normal for a reef tank but these target values looks like I would slightly improve the quality of the tank or am I chasing an illusion here?


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Old 04/19/2018, 08:17 AM   #2
nereefpat
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Your math is off...if you want saturated kalk. A 5 gallon container will hold about 10 teaspoons of kalk, if you want saturated kalkwasser.

ATO systems work OK for kalk. There can be problems if evaporation rates change (like seasonally). You just have to test for alk and Ca.

Yes, your values are fine. If you want to raise alk and Ca, the easiest way to do that is with baking soda and CaCl respectively. Or if you are adding more kalk than the tank is consuming, those values will rise.


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Old 04/19/2018, 08:42 AM   #3
accel
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nereefpat View Post
Your math is off...if you want saturated kalk. A 5 gallon container will hold about 10 teaspoons of kalk, if you want saturated kalkwasser.

ATO systems work OK for kalk. There can be problems if evaporation rates change (like seasonally). You just have to test for alk and Ca.

Yes, your values are fine. If you want to raise alk and Ca, the easiest way to do that is with baking soda and CaCl respectively. Or if you are adding more kalk than the tank is consuming, those values will rise.
Ah you're right. My math is wrong

I'd probably go with ATO and Kalk since the ATO would benefit me either way without the Kalk or with Kalk.


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Old 04/19/2018, 01:03 PM   #4
thegrun
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You may see faster stony coral growth at 450 CA and your Alk at 10.0, but your coral color is likely to suffer as a result. Personally I like your parameters right where they are. Are you having to dose now to keep those parameters? If not your kalkwasser solution is going to be too strong even if you are trying to raise your parameters. I would start at 1/2 teaspoon per gallon and adjust according to need.


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Old 04/19/2018, 01:08 PM   #5
shaginwagon13
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You may see faster stony coral growth at 450 CA and your Alk at 10.0, but your coral color is likely to suffer as a result. Personally I like your parameters right where they are.
I agree.


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Old 04/19/2018, 03:47 PM   #6
hkgar
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This calculator may help you.

You only want to replace the DKH used by the aquarium and fully saturated may be more than you need. Determine daily dKH usage and the daily evaporation rate.

For a 40 gallon tank and an evaporation rate of 1 gallon per day, fully saturated ATO will supply 1.7 dKH. I doubt that your system uses anywhere close to that.


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180 gallon, 30 gallon sump, 3 250W MH + 4 ATI T5's, MTC MVX 36 Skimmer, Apex controller Reef Octopus CaRx

Current Tank Info: 2 Barred Rabbitfish, Red Head, Yellow/Purple, Hoevans, Possum, 2 Leopard Wrasses, Kole, Purple & Atlantic Blue Tangs, Matted Filefish, 2 Percula Clown, 4 PJ Cardinals, Swallowtail Angel
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Old 04/19/2018, 07:25 PM   #7
accel
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Thanks for the input everyone. It looks like I need to observe and monitor first before I start dosing. I'd order the ATO system for top off purposes and Kalkwasser (to save for delivery and use it for future usage)


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Old 04/19/2018, 07:42 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by accel View Post
Thanks for the input everyone. It looks like I need to observe and monitor first before I start dosing. I'd order the ATO system for top off purposes and Kalkwasser (to save for delivery and use it for future usage)
You show your ph at 8.2, This is something I would keep an eye on it when dosing kalk. Kalk has a very high ph. My reef ph was 8.2 (measured towards the end of the daylight cycle and kalk started to drive it over 8.6 so I had to start mixing kalk with vinegar. Now that I see the benefit of vinegar dosing, I will always dose vinegar.
Cheers! Mark


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Old 04/20/2018, 11:35 AM   #9
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Only 2 tsp of kalk CAN dissolve in ro/di water, so overdosing is pretty well impossible: if you overdose, the excess will lie at the bottom of the reservoir until you add more fresh water. You CAN have a topoff accident that dumps too much kalked ro/di into your tank (a whiteout) but your greatest harm likely comes from the overdose of ro/di, not the kalk. There is a ph rise if this happens, but it self-corrects pretty fast. A teaspoon of Schweppes Bar Soda (your grocery drink aisle) per 50 gallons of tank can help correct this somewhat, but don't over-correct. Kalk is about the safest dosing system. It CAN chew up your topoff pump. Maxijet can't take it. Eheim pumps can.


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Salinity 1.024-6; alkalinity 8.3-9.3 on KH scale; calcium 420; magnesium 1300, temp 78-80, nitrate .2. Ammonia 0. No filters: lps tank. Alk and cal won't rise if mg is low.

Current Tank Info: 105g AquaVim wedge, 2 firefish, 2 chromis, royal gramma basslet, starry blenny, chestnut turbo snails, bristleworms, couple of hermits.
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Old 04/20/2018, 11:51 AM   #10
accel
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sk8r View Post
Only 2 tsp of kalk CAN dissolve in ro/di water, so overdosing is pretty well impossible: if you overdose, the excess will lie at the bottom of the reservoir until you add more fresh water. You CAN have a topoff accident that dumps too much kalked ro/di into your tank (a whiteout) but your greatest harm likely comes from the overdose of ro/di, not the kalk. There is a ph rise if this happens, but it self-corrects pretty fast. A teaspoon of Schweppes Bar Soda (your grocery drink aisle) per 50 gallons of tank can help correct this somewhat, but don't over-correct. Kalk is about the safest dosing system. It CAN chew up your topoff pump. Maxijet can't take it. Eheim pumps can.
So it's possible for me to setup a 5G ATO system and I can only put 2 tsp. Anything more will be a waste since they will just settle at the bottom.

So if I have a 100G ATO (exaggerating), it would be the same. Only 2 tsp will be dissolved in the water.

The worst case that can happen is me dumping 100G ro/di water on my sump?


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Old 04/20/2018, 12:14 PM   #11
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only 2 tsp PER Gallon of fresh water will dissolve. So if you put in 11 teaspoons into your five gallon reservoir, one teaspoon would fall to the bottom as a white slurry, not to dissolve until you top off your topoff with one MORE gallon of fresh water. That's how it works. I use Mrs. Wages Pickling Lime as kalk. Has a little impurity, but nothing harmful. And cheap. If you set alk at 8.3, cal at 420, and mg at 1350, before starting kalk, the kalkwater feed will keep it rock steady at those readings so long as the kalkwater continues to flow. Keep adding water and kalk and it never runs down until the mg falls below 1200. Keep that up, and it never runs down. So test mg once weekly.

The alk governs how the cal in the kalk dissolves, as I understand it. And the mg somehow keeps the alk from falling.


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Salinity 1.024-6; alkalinity 8.3-9.3 on KH scale; calcium 420; magnesium 1300, temp 78-80, nitrate .2. Ammonia 0. No filters: lps tank. Alk and cal won't rise if mg is low.

Current Tank Info: 105g AquaVim wedge, 2 firefish, 2 chromis, royal gramma basslet, starry blenny, chestnut turbo snails, bristleworms, couple of hermits.
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Old 04/20/2018, 01:40 PM   #12
hkgar
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A decent read about using Kalk in ATO. Pay attention to #3

http://www.mrsaltwatertank.com/how-t...-in-your-tank/


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180 gallon, 30 gallon sump, 3 250W MH + 4 ATI T5's, MTC MVX 36 Skimmer, Apex controller Reef Octopus CaRx

Current Tank Info: 2 Barred Rabbitfish, Red Head, Yellow/Purple, Hoevans, Possum, 2 Leopard Wrasses, Kole, Purple & Atlantic Blue Tangs, Matted Filefish, 2 Percula Clown, 4 PJ Cardinals, Swallowtail Angel
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Old 05/20/2018, 09:58 AM   #13
accel
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Some updates (it's been a month) . I bought the BRS Kalkwasser and setup a DIY drip system but I decided to use it with the Smart ATO auto top off system because it's simpler.

However I've never dosed any Kalk yet since I want to monitor my levels yet. As of right now, my test shows. My Calcium has increased to 480 from 420 and my DKh to 10 from 9. I have extra Acros now compare from a month ago.

So I guess with this trend there is no need for Kalkwasser yet. I will have to continue monitoring. I think the only thing that really changed is I switched my Salt to a version that has higher Calcium and Magnesium content. I switched from weekly water changes of 20G to small daily water change as well of 5G. (This is a 40G DT and 20G sump)


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Old 05/20/2018, 02:58 PM   #14
hkgar
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Quote:
Originally Posted by accel View Post
Some updates (it's been a month) . I bought the BRS Kalkwasser and setup a DIY drip system but I decided to use it with the Smart ATO auto top off system because it's simpler.

However I've never dosed any Kalk yet since I want to monitor my levels yet. As of right now, my test shows. My Calcium has increased to 480 from 420 and my DKh to 10 from 9. I have extra Acros now compare from a month ago.

So I guess with this trend there is no need for Kalkwasser yet. I will have to continue monitoring. I think the only thing that really changed is I switched my Salt to a version that has higher Calcium and Magnesium content. I switched from weekly water changes of 20G to small daily water change as well of 5G. (This is a 40G DT and 20G sump)
You are wasting money (IMHO). You might say throwing money down the drain. Anything over 15% water change per week is overkill and you are doing over 50. Your sum and DT have a 60 G capacity but your actual water volume is probably somewhat yes. Check out this chart and fill in the actual water dimensions not tank dimensions.


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180 gallon, 30 gallon sump, 3 250W MH + 4 ATI T5's, MTC MVX 36 Skimmer, Apex controller Reef Octopus CaRx

Current Tank Info: 2 Barred Rabbitfish, Red Head, Yellow/Purple, Hoevans, Possum, 2 Leopard Wrasses, Kole, Purple & Atlantic Blue Tangs, Matted Filefish, 2 Percula Clown, 4 PJ Cardinals, Swallowtail Angel
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