No announcement yet.

Calcium over 500, again!!!

  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Calcium over 500, again!!!

    When I first started checking the calcium levels in my tank (around December--the tank started in October) they were off the chart (salifert tops out at 500) and it took me quite a while to get them back to where I wanted. When I first started the tank, I was dosing calcium and alkalinity supplements separately, and obviously put too much calcium in. After that, I did some research and decided that the 2 part alkalinity/calcium supplements would be better. This research (I think it was Dr. Farley on ReefCentral) said that the reason to use these supplements was that they were balanced so that you didn't have swings in opposite directions with the two supplements (ie, no calcium level going up while the alkalinity goes down). So I started using B-Ionic and just dosed the alkalinity part until my calcium was around 480 and my alkalinity around 10. This happened to be around the same time that I started zeovit, and since these levels were too high, I started bringing them down. My understanding of the 2 part supplements is that if you add equal amounts of both supplements, the alkalinity and calcium levels will either both fall, both stay stable, or both rise. Given this, as I was dosing 10 ml of alkalinity, I started dosing 10 ml of calcium. This resulted in the alkalinity not moving, so I dropped the dose to 7.5 of each and then to 5 of each. Since my understanding was that both the alkalinity and the calcium would drop, I only tested for alkalinity, figuring that I'd test for calcium once the alkalinity was in range. Last night, I tested for alkalinity, and it's at 8.3. I was bored, so I went ahead and tested the calcium, and it's back at over 500!

    I was hoping someone could help me here. Is the whole idea behind the 2 part system, that it keeps the levels from going in opposite directions, utter crap, or could something else account for it? The only thing that I've changed in my routine during zeovit is that my water changes are more frequent. I mix to 1.026 and use corallife salt; I know this is pretty high in calcium, but I've tested the water before putting it in the tank and the calcium is usually right around 480--higher than where I want to be with zeovit, but still under 500. Also, my magnesium level when I started zeovit was around 1200, now it's at 1350.

    I've definitely learned my lesson on one thing; weekly tests should be on alkalinity and calcium, not just the alkalinity.

  • #2
    I had calcium over 500 in my tank for a while and to be honest with you, I saw no negative side effects, I did see a lot of SPS growth though.


    • #3
      Yeah, there's no problem with the SPS growth, but one of the mods told me that in a nutrient poor environment, you have to also lower the other parameters--he said that some tissue loss on one of my montis could be due to a combination of low nutrient levels and high alkalinity, and when my alkalinity dropped, the tissue loss stopped.


      • #4
        I would recommend to use a salt brand with a lower Ca concentration for the weekly water change until Ca is back to normal. Please keep KH in this stage around 7 – 8.

        I noticed problems if the parameters Ca – Mg & KH are not balanced to each other. I also had a Ca reading of 500 some moth back with a KH of 6. Corals showed STN until the Ca level was back to normal.

        In short words, if you keep your KH relative high, you will not get problems with a higher Ca level. If KH drops down, corals can STN.

        Now I would not recommend to add any “chemicals” to bring down Ca, I just would recommend to wait, doing water changes with a salt containing less Ca.



        • #5
          I think you also have to look at what you have in your system that is consuming or not consuming the calcium. There is no point in continuing to add supplements if there is no uptake by the critters or algea (coralline) in your tank. I always test my tank water and my change water prior to doing a water change so I know what I am starting out with and what I am adding and adjust from there.
          Just my .02


          • #6
            Thanks everyone! Can anyone recommend a good low calcium salt? I've always used Corallife, so I'm a bit in the dark on this one.


            • #7
              Hold out for the KZ salt. You can tailor it to your needs.. It comes with seperate Ca and Mg to add to your desired ratio...


              • #8
                I actually went ahead and bought some Instant Ocean before I had a chance to read the post about KZ salt, and since I bought a 50 pound bucket, it may be a while before I try the KZ. It sounds interesting though. Is it a situation where you put in X amount of calcium and Y amount of akalinity buffer per gallon to get a certain result, or do you have to keep adding and test it until the levels are right? If the former is the case, it sounds like a great idea, but if it's the latter, that seems like too much work.


                • #9
                  The additives are only Ca and Mg.. I am hoping Orion will test his water soon cause I want to see what the pH and the ALK is at at 1.025 salinity myself...


                  • #10
                    I'm using IO as well to keep the parameters in line as I also use Oceanic. The combo works well in preventing the Ca from >430 while my KH sits at 8 & Mg at 1300, with no sequalae to my corals. Bob
                    "There might be something to this ZEOvit"