How often should I mix my Kalk in the reactor?

Rst

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Once I hit 1,000 mL’s and above. The 5/G is coming in and this will go back in the garage. :)
I like to mix mine up and put it in a reservoir and dose with my GHL. I don’t touch it afterwards or open the lid. Mine lasts about 1 week +/- depending on demand and reservoir size. When I test it, it’s 12.3-12.4. I’m fixing to move to a 5/G reservoir I believe and do it the same way.
Hi @Reefahholic nice to hear from someone with your well respected experience.

If you have been reading this thread and my attempt to discover the best methods on using and adding kalk. Can you add any advice on how to fix or improve how my kalk solution looses its concentration in just a matter a few days or my frequent need to empty and clean out the reactor after only a half a dozen kalk topups(excessive/massive sludge collected at the bottom)? Perhaps the problems are due to the methods being used to stir, or how I add the kalk solution to my sump constantly & very slowly 24hrs/day, or not proper mixing or maybe the quality of the kalk I use.

Can you suggest on any ways how to improve my methods? And what criteria do you use to test when to add more kalk?
 

Reefahholic

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Hi @Reefahholic nice to hear from someone with your well respected experience.

If you have been reading this thread and my attempt to discover the best methods on using and adding kalk. Can you add any advice on how to fix or improve how my kalk solution looses its concentration in just a matter a few days or my frequent need to empty and clean out the reactor after only a half a dozen kalk topups(excessive/massive sludge collected at the bottom)? Perhaps the problems are due to the methods being used to stir, or how I add the kalk solution to my sump constantly & very slowly 24hrs/day, or not proper mixing or maybe the quality of the kalk I use.

Can you suggest on any ways how to improve my methods? And what criteria do you use to test when to add more kalk?

That is a lot of questions but I’ll try my best.

Randy Farley told me that the best way to dose Kalk is to mix it up, put it in a reservoir, keep the lid closed, and dose it with a pump. That has worked well for me. If using a doser it’s easier to control my ALK level. IMO Kalk Reactors also work well, but fluctuate a little to much for my taste so I stick with the reservoir and dose with my GHL 2.1. My pH is usually 8.0-8.1 right now at the lowest and 8.3 peak photo period. That is with calibrated equipment. I will typically check my Kalk with a Milwaukee pH monitor. So far it’s been 12.3-12.4 and mine last about a week. I know it may loose potency over time, but since mine is gone within 7 days I don’t have to worry too much. Even if it drops a little bit I’m not all that worried about it. As long as I’m 12ish I’m fine with that.

I’ve been dosing 24/7 and honestly it’s not ideal and what I’d prefer to do, but GHL only has 12 or 24 doses where you can set it to dose X amount at night. So before I flatten my pH curve a bit I’ll need to invest in another Kamoer and use a timer to dose only at night or something similar. I don’t currently have an Apex on the system. So yeah, I dose around 100-150x a day automatically (X amount of mL’s depending on consumption and what the tank is doing).

When you say you’re loosing potency…how low are you taking? 11…10… is it really low or still in the 12’s. I would try to change Kalk products and get the product with the highest purity.

I mix 2 tsp per gallon (fully saturated) and stir it up until it’s completely dissolved and put the lid on and leave it just like that. No slurry’s for me. :) I don’t add any Kalk until it’s gone. I rinse the reservoir out about every 2-3 fills. Mine also will start to cake up down there and get funky. The pic above is a fresh reservoir just mixed. Later on it turns fairly clear and has a small white layer on bottom. Later when I get the 5/G reservoir rolling I’ll do some testing for you and see how long it takes mine to loose potency, but I’m sure some of these guys here have it pretty well dialed in when it starts to drop. They can probably tell you. I wouldn’t sweat it too much. Pick a good product and keep the lid closed and change it frequently and you should have good potent Kalk.
 

Rst

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That is a lot of questions but I’ll try my best.

Randy Farley told me that the best way to dose Kalk is to mix it up, put it in a reservoir, keep the lid closed, and dose it with a pump. That has worked well for me. If using a doser it’s easier to control my ALK level. IMO Kalk Reactors also work well, but fluctuate a little to much for my taste so I stick with the reservoir and dose with my GHL 2.1. My pH is usually 8.0-8.1 right now at the lowest and 8.3 peak photo period. That is with calibrated equipment. I will typically check my Kalk with a Milwaukee pH monitor. So far it’s been 12.3-12.4 and mine last about a week. I know it may loose potency over time, but since mine is gone within 7 days I don’t have to worry too much. Even if it drops a little bit I’m not all that worried about it. As long as I’m 12ish I’m fine with that.

I’ve been dosing 24/7 and honestly it’s not ideal and what I’d prefer to do, but GHL only has 12 or 24 doses where you can set it to dose X amount at night. So before I flatten my pH curve a bit I’ll need to invest in another Kamoer and use a timer to dose only at night or something similar. I don’t currently have an Apex on the system. So yeah, I dose around 100-150x a day automatically (X amount of mL’s depending on consumption and what the tank is doing).

When you say you’re loosing potency…how low are you taking? 11…10… is it really low or still in the 12’s. I would try to change Kalk products and get the product with the highest purity.

I mix 2 tsp per gallon (fully saturated) and stir it up until it’s completely dissolved and put the lid on and leave it just like that. No slurry’s for me. :) I don’t add any Kalk until it’s gone. I rinse the reservoir out about every 2-3 fills. Mine also will start to cake up down there and get funky. The pic above is a fresh reservoir just mixed. Later on it turns fairly clear and has a small white layer on bottom. Later when I get the 5/G reservoir rolling I’ll do some testing for you and see how long it takes mine to loose potency, but I’m sure some of these guys here have it pretty well dialed in when it starts to drop. They can probably tell you. I wouldn’t sweat it too much. Pick a good product and keep the lid closed and change it frequently and you should have good potent Kalk.
Hi Reefahholic, I am sorry that I asked so many questions, perhaps it’s just from my frustration with the reactor that causes me to be way over anxious. Your response was really terrific and much better than I could of ever expected. Thank you!

Based on my daily evaporation rate of 1.5gals/day, the manufacturer (Avast Marine K2) instructions say to add 1.25cups of new Kalk powder mixed with RO into its container and to refill it with powder every 2weeks (container holds apprx 3.5gals of RO) and then to clean out this container once every 2-3 refills. This means it’s instructions say to add approx 17 tsp/galwhich is way over the 2 tps/gal. So this might be my first mistake.

Secondly, the manufacturer’s instructions do NOT tell me to mix up the kalk powder until it’s all dissolved! It simply says to turn on the stirrer for the first 2 - 3 mins settling period before its ready to start dosing. It says it is designed to run 24HR’s/day continuously. Note that after 2 - 3 mins, my container is still filled with lots of un-dissolved powder.

So it is no wonder that my kalk reactor is full of sludge and builds up quickly. So from now foward, I will follow your advise and add only 2 tsps per gal and then have mix it thoroughly until it is 100% dissolved.

Hopefully after I disregard the manufacturer’s instructions, my kalk stirrer will perform way better.

If you get any spare time, can you let me know how much your Kalkwasser strength drops before your next refill.

Ron
 

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Hi Reefahholic, I am sorry that I asked so many questions, perhaps it’s just from my frustration with the reactor that causes me to be way over anxious. Your response was really terrific and much better than I could of ever expected. Thank you!

Based on my daily evaporation rate of 1.5gals/day, the manufacturer (Avast Marine K2) instructions say to add 1.25cups of new Kalk powder mixed with RO into its container and to refill it with powder every 2weeks (container holds apprx 3.5gals of RO) and then to clean out this container once every 2-3 refills. This means it’s instructions say to add approx 17 tsp/galwhich is way over the 2 tps/gal. So this might be my first mistake.

Secondly, the manufacturer’s instructions do NOT tell me to mix up the kalk powder until it’s all dissolved! It simply says to turn on the stirrer for the first 2 - 3 mins settling period before its ready to start dosing. It says it is designed to run 24HR’s/day continuously. Note that after 2 - 3 mins, my container is still filled with lots of un-dissolved powder.

So it is no wonder that my kalk reactor is full of sludge and builds up quickly. So from now foward, I will follow your advise and add only 2 tsps per gal and then have mix it thoroughly until it is 100% dissolved.

Hopefully after I disregard the manufacturer’s instructions, my kalk stirrer will perform way better.

If you get any spare time, can you let me know how much your Kalkwasser strength drops before your next refill.

Ron
I’d follow the manufacturer’s instructions for that reactor/ equipment you have. It’s common for a Kalk stirrer to use more Kalk and have a thick layer on the bottom. Not sure why they use so much. I’m assuming so they can run much longer and keep the saturated solution as close to 12.4 as possible as they continuously stir the Kalk, and pull water in and feed that saturated solution into the system.

If you use a dosing reservoir like mine then 2 tsp per gallon will get you fully saturated. Once fully saturated I’m pretty sure the pH can’t go any higher than 12.4 ish.

How low did the pH in your solution dip?
 

ZombieEngineer

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Hi Reefahholic, I am sorry that I asked so many questions, perhaps it’s just from my frustration with the reactor that causes me to be way over anxious. Your response was really terrific and much better than I could of ever expected. Thank you!

Based on my daily evaporation rate of 1.5gals/day, the manufacturer (Avast Marine K2) instructions say to add 1.25cups of new Kalk powder mixed with RO into its container and to refill it with powder every 2weeks (container holds apprx 3.5gals of RO) and then to clean out this container once every 2-3 refills. This means it’s instructions say to add approx 17 tsp/galwhich is way over the 2 tps/gal. So this might be my first mistake.

Secondly, the manufacturer’s instructions do NOT tell me to mix up the kalk powder until it’s all dissolved! It simply says to turn on the stirrer for the first 2 - 3 mins settling period before its ready to start dosing. It says it is designed to run 24HR’s/day continuously. Note that after 2 - 3 mins, my container is still filled with lots of un-dissolved powder.

So it is no wonder that my kalk reactor is full of sludge and builds up quickly. So from now foward, I will follow your advise and add only 2 tsps per gal and then have mix it thoroughly until it is 100% dissolved.

Hopefully after I disregard the manufacturer’s instructions, my kalk stirrer will perform way better.

If you get any spare time, can you let me know how much your Kalkwasser strength drops before your next refill.

Ron
You are supposed to add much more than 2tbsp per day otherwise you would need to add that amount every 2 days not every 2 weeks.

If you want your water to run clear but fully saturated, only run the mixing pump once or twice per day and disable the ATO the same time it's mixing.
 

Rst

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You are supposed to add much more than 2tbsp per day otherwise you would need to add that amount every 2 days not every 2 weeks.

If you want your water to run clear but fully saturated, only run the mixing pump once or twice per day and disable the ATO the same time it's mixing.
I really wanted to run this reactor just like the way that you have described in your last post.

If I understand your standard kalkwasser method, that would be: 1. Fill my reactor with 3.5 gals of RO. 2. Add 2 tsps/gallon or approx 7 tsps total of kalk powder. 3. Mix thoroughly until ALL of the powder is dissolved. 4. Start slowly pumping in (using a doser) fresh RO from my large secondary container into the reactor which will now drip slowly into my sump. Stir only once or twice a day using the reactor's built-in stirrer. 5. After approximately 1 week, refill the reactor with 7 tsps of new powder, mix thoroughly until ALL dissolved and start slowly dosing in fresh RO into the reactor from my RO container. After 2 - 3 refills, clean out all old reactor solution & any left over stuff completely and then refill with new 3.5 gallons of RO and 7tsps of powder. Repeat.

Did I understand previous advice correctly?
 
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I really wanted to run this reactor just like the way that you have described in your last post.

If I understand your standard kalkwasser method, that would be: 1. Fill my reactor with 3.5 gals of RO. 2. Add 2 tsps/gallon or approx 7 tsps total of kalk powder. 3. Mix thoroughly until ALL of the powder is dissolved. 4. Start slowly pumping in (using a doser) fresh RO from my large secondary container into the reactor which will now drip slowly into my sump. Stir only once or twice a day using the reactor's built-in stirrer. 5. After approximately 1 week, refill the reactor with 7 tsps of new powder, mix thoroughly until ALL dissolved and start slowly dosing in fresh RO into the reactor from my RO container. After 2 - 3 refills, clean out all old reactor solution & any left over stuff completely and then refill with new 3.5 gallons of RO and 7tsps of powder. Repeat.

Did I understand previous advice correctly?
No. If you evap 1.5 gallons per day and you want to add kalk weekly, you need 21 tbsp not 7. Double that if you want to refill every other week.

Stir only once or twice a day to deliver clear saturated kalk. Stir constantly to deliver suspended slurry.
 

Rst

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Ok, hopefully I got it now. The daily quantity of kalk to add to my 3.5gal reactor is NOT based on the size of the reactor but it is based on the quantity (gallons) of evaporation / day running thru the reactor. So I will follow the steps I listed in my last post, except I will add 21 tbsp (tablespoons) per week instead of 7 teaspoons.

Sorry, maybe I can blame my confusion on just senior moments, but I seem to be having a few too many :grinning-face-with-big-eyes:.
 

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