After the storm: What's next for your reef?

BRS

How do you take care of your tank after the storm?

  • Water change

    Votes: 56 39.4%
  • Check all equipment and service as needed

    Votes: 108 76.1%
  • Check parameters and make adjustments

    Votes: 75 52.8%
  • Feed fish and corals

    Votes: 46 32.4%
  • Other (please explain in discussion thread)

    Votes: 16 11.3%

  • Total voters
    142

Peace River

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Reef keepers in some parts of the United States are putting their lives and tanks back together after the devastating storm this past week. Others have experience severe weather conditions in and extended power outages in the past as well. We have talked about what to do for storm prep, but what do you do after the storm? As the electricity and WiFi come back on, how do you get your tank back to normalcy? How quickly do you fix any parameters that may be different than your expectation? How much do you feed the fish and corals (if at all)? What other tips do you have to share? Please add your thoughts in the thread below about what to do with your reef after a power outage

Please also take some time to reflect on those who were not so fortunate and consider what you can do for those who experienced significant loss through this storm.

Photo by @raul medina
clown1.jpg
 
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zheka757

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I was just wondering about that, im still with out power, just running my generator, after 3 days I turned my lights on so that corals won't die, I usually running calcium reactor but not right now, im sure my parameters are off, but so far no death in corals or fish, 400g tank
 

flashsmith

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I was able to run my return pumps on both of my tanks for the 3 days I was without power due to Ian. A reefer 625 and an IM sr80.All I did was catch up on dosing as I wasn't using my auto dosers. Of course changed socks etc.. Even skipped my w/c this week. Then again I own a lawn/landscaping business and I was exhausted doing clean ups for a few days.My tanks were spotless and the glass was crystal clear much to my surprise. Corals weren't thrilled though. Everything is back to normal and did just fine. I fed once a day and that was pretty much it. Luckily our temps dropped into the mid 60s at night and were low 80s during the day. If it were hot as it usually is I might have had more issues.
 
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jsker

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I was ready with a battery backup to run the pumps until I could run a generator with enough KW to run the system and other necessary appliances when the winds calm down. Fortunately this time around we did not lose power.

I would suggest to have some RO/DI ready and on can do a water change to replenish the parameters with the water change.
 

GARRIGA

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Old wives tells us to clean filters before resuming power because built up rotten egg like gasses will kill everything yet aren't our live rock holding said gasses deep inside their pores? My understanding, aerate the surface and let those gasses escape and in the 90s had my canister off for three days and didn't have any issues turning it back on. Effluent was at the surface and likely what happened. Hydrogen sulphide doesn't linger long but if surface agitation not present then perhaps can cause concerns. My understanding. I could be wrong and just got lucky. Have also heard/read conflicting theories.

Curious if any have actually lost fish because their filters turned back on after hours of being off. supposedly doesn't take days to become toxic what I've heard.
 
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CdubsMixReef

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I bought a Yamaha portable generator generator and it powers everything for for my and it a lot. I have a CD 205 with 5 gen4 radions, a full apex setup up with trident, reef octopus various8 return pump, a heater of course and a chiller with its own separate supply pump. I’ve had the power go out for 10 hours cause some dumb**** took out power pole but during that time I just had put gas in generator once. Best investment I’ve made for emergency situations. That’s the link to model I got

 

Jay Hemdal

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I had forgotten that I had written an article on emergency protocols for aquariums some years ago. It doesn't help much after-the-fact with the current emergencies people have, but perhaps for the next time?



Jay
 

Labridaedicted

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I have a backup generator that can run most of the house, including the aquarium so if I'm home it's not a huge issue. If it happens while I'm at work it's a bit more of an issue, however, usually not catastrophic. My apex alerts me if it goes offline and i usually head home if thats the case. When I get home, I fire up the genny and then do a test on ammonia and observe the fish and coral. After an hour or 2 I feed the fishes (since they're used to getting alot of small feedings throughout the day, wanna keep those calories up) and then crack a beer and relax in front of the tank until the power comes back on.
 

Petcrazyson

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Thankfully nothing serious happened to any of my equipment or fish. The power did go out multiple times but not too long. I did have a generator for back up. The only thing was my return pump sent me a few messages during the storm that said “needs management”. Its working well now
 

MnFish1

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Reef keepers in some parts of the United States are putting their lives and tanks back together after the devastating storm this past week. Others have experience severe weather conditions in and extended power outages in the past as well. We have talked about what to do for storm prep, but what do you do after the storm? As the electricity and WiFi come back on, how do you get your tank back to normalcy? How quickly do you fix any parameters that may be different than your expectation? How much do you feed the fish and corals (if at all)? What other tips do you have to share? Please add your thoughts in the thread below about what to do with your reef after a power outage

Please also take some time to reflect on those who were not so fortunate and consider what you can do for those who experienced significant loss through this storm.

Photo by @raul medina
clown1.jpg
Feeding - it's the last thing - make sure the parameters are ok - make sure the electricity is stable, make sure the equipment is ok - i.e. your controller - was it shocked - is it reading correctly, etc.
 

Koigula

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Really this happens before the storm by having reliable relay switched DC powerheads with enough amp hours batteries for 24 hr backup. DC sump pumps are certainly debateable but can be considered.

Next step is really eliminating all hobby grade wall warts. I switched over the Puhls brand that come out of water treatment plants in new used state.

A Honda generator is essential. They always start with non ethanol gas and carb starter spray. I could use a local switch back for fish room but can make it work now.

Last step is to have enough RODI to do 50% water change in an emergency. I never do more than 10% water changes watching salinity and alkalinity closely when things are going well.

All that said, after an upset I literally carefully leave the tank alone for a period of weeks and observe.
 

MnFish1

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Really this happens before the storm by having reliable relay switched DC powerheads with enough amp hours batteries for 24 hr backup. DC sump pumps are certainly debateable but can be considered.

Next step is really eliminating all hobby grade wall warts. I switched over the Puhls brand that come out of water treatment plants in new used state.

A Honda generator is essential. They always start with non ethanol gas and carb starter spray. I could use a local switch back for fish room but can make it work now.

Last step is to have enough RODI to do 50% water change in an emergency. I never do more than 10% water changes watching salinity and alkalinity closely when things are going well.

All that said, after an upset I literally carefully leave the tank alone for a period of weeks and observe.
This is key - "All that said, after an upset I literally carefully leave the tank alone for a period of weeks and observe." IMHO
 

CoralB

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My protocols depending on how long the power was out and assuming that I still had one pump going on battery back and air stones in the main tank and sump which is my emergency plan , are to do a 10 - 20 percent water change , change out mechanical filtration ie: filter socks / material ,clean out my skimmer cup . I also will ad good bacteria like microbactor 7 or comparable , i wouldn’t feed the fish that much until I’m sure that the bacteria bed in the tank is up to par. I check my parameters mostly for ammonia, nitrates, phosphates . This has been my go to procedure and haven’t incurred any losses that I can remember. I just went 15 hours without power due to hurricane Ian recently and am happy to say for me my tank came out good with said protocols . My thoughts and prayers are with people who lost more than just their tanks . :worried-face:
 
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MnFish1

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Reef keepers in some parts of the United States are putting their lives and tanks back together after the devastating storm this past week. Others have experience severe weather conditions in and extended power outages in the past as well. We have talked about what to do for storm prep, but what do you do after the storm? As the electricity and WiFi come back on, how do you get your tank back to normalcy? How quickly do you fix any parameters that may be different than your expectation? How much do you feed the fish and corals (if at all)? What other tips do you have to share? Please add your thoughts in the thread below about what to do with your reef after a power outage

Please also take some time to reflect on those who were not so fortunate and consider what you can do for those who experienced significant loss through this storm.

Photo by @raul medina
clown1.jpg
The wifi should not matter at all. Right? The only benefit is connecting to the tank - if you're away from home - there is nothing you can do anyway? As to the rest - a generator (which I would assume most people in the area (in a private house) would have - whether these would work under water or not is another story.

In any case - Take stock. Go slowly. Reflect. Let your parameters stabilize for a bit - water changes, etc. Try to get rid of any dead things in the tank you might not immediately see. Hope everyone came out ok. Though I know from friends that is not the case
 

M3rmaids

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I live in Clearwater and was without power for 4 days. I hooked the filter up to my car with a extension cord for 3 days straight so there was atleast oxygen. No lights.

my bubble tip has been closed since the power came back on.

I think it may be gone. All my fish survived. I was adding rodi water for evap.

but I don’t know what to do about the bubble tip. It housed my clowns and they seem very upset.

its closed up tight.

I know it sounds silly, but it was my pride of the tank. I didn’t know how devastated I’d be. I’m still hopeful. But also trying to be a realist.
Complete water change, I did start lights back on slow but they are back to full spectrum now.

In hindsight I’m glad I had the HOB for the tank and the sump wasn’t installed because I only needed the one plug to “survive”.
 

kschweer

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Quick word from someone who works around wires during storms. As a line clearance tree trimmer I remove trees from lines after storms so power can be restored. If running a generator please make sure things are installed correctly and shut off the main breaker in your breaker box when running a generator through a transfer switch. Backfeed is extremely dangerous to guys in my profession as well as line workers. Back feed is when a generator sends power back to the lines. Not many know that a transformer which steps power down to voltage suitable for your home also works in reverse. So a transformer that takes 7.2kv (7200 volts) and turns it into either 120 or 220 volts will turn the backfeed into 7.2kv. Just food for thought.
 

ss88

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I was mostly prepared, had sufficient provisions for 2 weeks without power including running all systems at 100%. Issue I did not account for, dramatically decreased co2 levels because all windows open in home caused pH to spike and alkalinity consumption to sky rocket. 8.2pH prior, 8.45+pH after power outage. Alkalinity consumption 100+% increase. Working on restoring my alkalinity to 8dKH. Right now at 6dKH. .
 
BRS

Does it matter to you whether your fish are captive-bred or wild caught?

  • I only buy captive bred fish.

    Votes: 50 13.3%
  • It matters, but I will buy either captive-bred or wild-caught.

    Votes: 281 74.5%
  • I think wild-caught fish are the better option.

    Votes: 5 1.3%
  • I don’t care where the fish were bred.

    Votes: 41 10.9%
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