Measuring ORP worth the effort?

LVReefer94

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What is the real point of measuring orp? Mine always sits in the low 400 range unless i do a water change then it will stay in the low 3’s - high 2’s for the night. I just honestly dont see the point in it. BRS even says if you dont run ozone then you’ll only see a change if a fish dies but one of my clowns apparently died today or last night and my orp didnt even change.
 
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G Santana

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I have always used it to give me an immediate look at my water stability and quality. Even when I ran ozone, once your tank matured, the ozone rarely ran. But if something goes wrong, your numbers will tell you immediately.
No in a well established and stabil tank it isn't needed, but I like looking at the number regardless.
 

lapin

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To me it only useful if it changes from the norm.
I did not calibrate mine.
 
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Dan_P

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I have always used it to give me an immediate look at my water stability and quality. Even when I ran ozone, once your tank matured, the ozone rarely ran. But if something goes wrong, your numbers will tell you immediately.
No in a well established and stabil tank it isn't needed, but I like looking at the number regardless.
ORP measurement is completely useless for the average aquarist. The measurement is confounded with pH, making it a confusing measurement. It requires calibration with the chemistry you are monitoring, otherwise the measurement is meaningless. Measuring oxygen would make more sense, though that is not quite a trivial measurement to make, a bit more sophisticated than pH. I feel interpreting ORP values akin to numerology or reading tea leaves.
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

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What is the real point of measuring orp? Mine always sits in the low 400 range unless i do a water change then it will stay in the low 3’s - high 2’s for the night. I just honestly dont see the point in it. BRS even says if you dont run ozone then you’ll only see a change if a fish dies but one of my clowns apparently died today or last night and my orp didnt even change.

IMO, it is not worth measuring unless you use ozone and want to be sure you are not adding too much.

I stopped measuring it despite having the equipment.

This has a lot more info on what ORP is and what it measures:

ORP and the Reef Aquarium - Reefkeeping.com
 

Quietman

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I've had ORP on my Apex dashboard for a year now. I've had no reactions other than "hmmm, that's interesting" to any input from ORP. But I had a slot so bought the detector. Worth the $80? I guess, but only for entertainment purposes. I've yet to take any action on an ORP reading and it hasn't been great at indicating fish deaths.
 
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Clownfishy

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The one benefit like about measuring ORP with my Apex is that it does show big drops when I do a water change or when I dose NOPOX. Not that it helps as such, but graphically, it is a reminder on when I did the water change or dose the NOPOX when I look back through the graphs. By seeing it visually, it allows me to experiment moving the dosing of NOPOX to say at night when the ORP is naturally increasing so that offsets the decrease of the NOPOX dosing.
So in summary, more of a visual guide so I agree with the previous post when Quietman says "hmmm, that's interesting"!
 

taricha

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I also found a product whose purpose is to raise ORP. Technically, chemically oxidize organics and thus raise ORP.
I think it's permanganate?!?
https://www.brightwellaquatics.com/products/redoxiclean.php


  • Immediately improves water quality in all manner of aquaria by enhancing the rate of particulate and dissolved organic material decomposition, enabling the constituents to be more effectively removed with protein skimming, activated carbon, and other means of biological and chemical filtration.
  • Safe for use with all fishes, invertebrates, and plants.
  • Particularly useful: in heavily-stocked, heavily-fed aquaria; during "hiccups" in water quality in which the elevated concentration of organic material in the aquarium would negatively impact the health of the inhabitants.
  • Reacts completely; leaves no residual.

The point is, unless you are using something that moves ORP, then ORP measures are slow and changes are subtle and not very informative. But if you were using ozone, or the above oxidizer (but not h2o2), then yeah ORP will track how that chemical is interacting.
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

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I also found a product whose purpose is to raise ORP. Technically, chemically oxidize organics and thus raise ORP.
I think it's permanganate?!?
https://www.brightwellaquatics.com/products/redoxiclean.php




The point is, unless you are using something that moves ORP, then ORP measures are slow and changes are subtle and not very informative. But if you were using ozone, or the above oxidizer (but not h2o2), then yeah ORP will track how that chemical is interacting.

Permanganate is the traditional product, and was pushed by people who (falsely, IMO) equated higher ORP with cleaner water.
 

Quietman

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To illustrate my point...here's my ORP readout over the last week. Due to reasons (all in build thread) I ended up with a lot of waving fronds of GHA. I cleaned tank out last Friday (11th) and installed an ATS (RAIN2) and took out skimmer - no room for both, plus it wasn't doing as much as it used to (see above - waving fronds of GHA). Anyhow the point isn't about the green grass garden in my tank or my actions it's about the ORP response.

ORP-pH 090621 150621.PNG


Before everything happened and after three days look the same (didn't show before - but it's the same at 9th and 10th for weeks). No idea what I'm looking at here. I get the disruption - less the 'back to normal'. Not asking for analysis or any actions to take because it's ORP and a fools errand to chase (even if chasing was somehow a good thing). I just find this parameter fascinating to monitor.
 

shwareefer

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Like what? What are the accidents/dangers that it will measure?
Here is my mini cycle in a two month old frag tank clearly indicated by the strong dip in ORP. I assumed the tank was stable and had fed my coral about 18 hours before this happened. A few capfuls of prime and microbacter7 had it rebounding within an hour. The ORP is what alerted me to check the tank and see alot of upset retracted coral and cloudy water.
orp_crash.png
 
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