Re:Cloudy Water

Pete Giwojna

Dear Merx:

That’s a good dual phase buffer system by you’ll need to modify how you use it somewhat since its intended for use in reef tanks teeming with hard corals, Tridachia clams and other organisms that require higher alkalinity then fish only systems and and therefore need lots of bioavailable calcium. In a seahorse tank with lots of live rock and only a few hand selected soft corals, there isn’t going to be nearly as much demand for calcium, so you won’t need to use the dual phase buffer system nearly as regularly as you would in a full-blown reef tank. In your case, I would shoot for the low-end of the recommended range (i.e., alkalinity 3.0 and KH no more than 8.4). Once you have adjusted the alkalinity and carbonate hardness levels down to the appropriate level, you will probably only need to add the buffer once a week or whenever you make your routine partial water changes; you won’t need to add the buffer daily by any means. In the meantime, I wouldn’t add any more of the buffer at all until your readings come down.

Since your alkalinity and carbonate hardness are considerably higher than desirable for your particular setup right now, you may want to consider making partial water changes using unbuffered RO/DI water two or even three times a week until the readings come down to a more reasonable level.

Please do continue to take steps to lower the water temperature as well.

Best of luck working out the proper regimen for your dual phase buffer system so that it maintains the appropriate levels of alkalinity, carbonate hardness, and calcium for your seahorse setup, Merx.

Pete Giwojna

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