My Honest Opinion About The Alkatronic

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dwest

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Well I guess that gets us closer to understanding why the interval is 3 not 4 like you want. For some reason it's not being saved as a new test interval. I was going to suggest that you should look at the Alkatronic screen while you hit the save button in the app, and see if the screen displays the "changes being saved" notification it flashes. I can't remember exactly what it says, but it's something like that. I think it's possible that the interval is being saved in the app but not the machine itself.

If you want to try a few things (which I know you've done a million saves already) let me know. I can think of a couple things to try. Otherwise we'll wait and see what they figure out support wise.
I thought I would post a resolution.

The alkatronic didn’t know that I had a daylight savings time change. I learned that it was testing 1 hour more frequently than I told it to. It was testing every 3 hours when I set it to test every 4 hours for example. I unplugged the alkatronic for a minute and let it restart. Problem solved! Eric Tang was helpful via email.

I don’t know why others aren’t seeing this. Maybe others are smart enough to unplug the machine for a minute :). The problem arose the first time I made a testing frequency change after daylight savings time change.
 
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TMB

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Haha, well that's a good answer! I can tell you why some weren't affected by this (like me), there is no time change in AZ, had no idea that it could be an issue. ;) :)

Glad it's working now, and everyone else got a heads up to take a look at this during the time changes.
 
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mitch91175

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I was hoping someone here could help. I have been using the alkatronic for 6 weeks with no issues. Yesterday, my alkatronic started measuring every 3 hours. It was measuring every 4 hours before that. I checked the measure interval under settings and it still says 4 hours. Using both bluetooth and online, I reset the interval to 4 hours (the LCD screen on the alkatronic states 4 hour interval), but no luck. I don’t have Facebook so I dont know how to get help. I will be traveling soon and am concerned something might change again. Any suggestions?

I know that sometimes the settings actually need to be switched on the off again. I had this issue before and what I did was restart the unit, and change the settings again then it worked as normal. Almost like the local app caches the old settings or something but the unit itself just needs to be refreshed.

Honestly having it test every 3 hours isn't the end of the world. Just make your own reagent and call it a day. Then you can test every hour if you like ;).

I also had this happen with my Dosetronic when I initially set it up. That was the reason I was initially frustrated with the Dosetronic.
 

dwest

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I know that sometimes the settings actually need to be switched on the off again. I had this issue before and what I did was restart the unit, and change the settings again then it worked as normal. Almost like the local app caches the old settings or something but the unit itself just needs to be refreshed.

Honestly having it test every 3 hours isn't the end of the world. Just make your own reagent and call it a day. Then you can test every hour if you like ;).

I also had this happen with my Dosetronic when I initially set it up. That was the reason I was initially frustrated with the Dosetronic.
Yes, I don’t know if you saw above the issue was the alkatronic didn’t recognize the time change after daylight savings time ended. Just as you mentioned, a simple restart was all that was necessary. I was OK with testing every 3 hours (I do make my own reagent :) ) but I was just worried the electronics were getting flaky on me.
 
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mitch91175

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Is anyone using the dkh reading from their alkatronic to control their CaRx? I have the bnc out connected to my apex, I'm just wondering if someone is controlling effluent or CO2 based on the number and what their code looks like?

Used to do this but the bluetooth adapter no longer functions properly.
 

Biff0rz

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Used to do this but the bluetooth adapter no longer functions properly.
I'm not using the BT adapter, I was thinking of just using the outlet on the apex to turn the co2 on/off based on the reading. Unless most are using the Dosetronic and dosing that way??
 

dwest

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I believe suggested is every 6 months, but it also depends on testing frequency.
Thanks Mitch. I agree that the frequency will matter. But I am wondering if folks are stretching that time considerably without issues or not. I test every 4 hours and am at the “counter” time for new pump line replacement. The unit is only 3 1/2 months old though. I’m thinking I can go longer but don’t want to push my luck too far :)
 
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mitch91175

mitch91175

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Thanks Mitch. I agree that the frequency will matter. But I am wondering if folks are stretching that time considerably without issues or not. I test every 4 hours and am at the “counter” time for new pump line replacement. The unit is only 3 1/2 months old though. I’m thinking I can go longer but don’t want to push my luck too far :)

You can stretch it as long as you do the calibration. Will likely need to do it more frequently the older the tubing.
 

Breadman03

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You can stretch it as long as you do the calibration. Will likely need to do it more frequently the older the tubing.

I'm speaking specifically of the DOS here, but it's still a peristaltic pump. My DOS tubing lasts significantly longer than the suggested maintenance interval, but the line eventually splits where it gets flattened by the rollers. It could be a major issue if the pump is at the low end of a siphon, but mine are all mounted well above the water line and suck air in which breaks the siphon. My LARS becomes evident by air in the lines instead of liquids in my pump electronics, and I recommend others keep their pumps above the water line for the same reason.
 

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Is anyone using the dkh reading from their alkatronic to control their CaRx? I have the bnc out connected to my apex, I'm just wondering if someone is controlling effluent or CO2 based on the number and what their code looks like?

I shut off my CO2 if Alk goes above a certain level. The problem is that there is a significant lag between shutting off the CO2 and noticing a change in Alk delivery to the aquarium. The CaRx main chamber’s pH will slowly rise and slowly reduce the amount of Alk being delivered, so this is not a good approach for fine control but more of a fail safe in case something goes wrong and Alk rises too much.
 
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mitch91175

mitch91175

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I shut off my CO2 if Alk goes above a certain level. The problem is that there is a significant lag between shutting off the CO2 and noticing a change in Alk delivery to the aquarium. The CaRx main chamber’s pH will slowly rise and slowly reduce the amount of Alk being delivered, so this is not a good approach for fine control but more of a fail safe in case something goes wrong and Alk rises too much.


You need to shutoff the feed pump instead of the CO2 solenoid.
 
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mitch91175

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Feed pump off and co2 is still on, wouldn’t it keep pumping co2 in and lowering further the ph in the chamber to melt the media further?


Not if you have a pH probe monitor the CO2 and turning it off at a certain level. If you do not then yes CO2 will continue to flow into the chamber; but question I have (at least I've always felt this way) why not have a pH probe monitoring the CO2 to shut it off just in case?

Of course you do not need a pH probe, but why not when it's so easy to manage?
 

Bluedore

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I’ve tried shutting off both(co2 & feed pump) but the ph in the chamber continues to go down, I think is due to residual co2 still circulating. And once back on it kick the DKH too high and Alkatronic shuts off again. I’m trying just turning off the co2 now, once the co2 back on it’ll take some time before the ph is back normal and hoping DKH will fall in the middle of the set range. I have not setup with apex yet, but will try using apex to shut off co2 once setup and see if it’s better. From one of your apex graph, it seems the co2 is getting shut off a lot and are concern of the longevity of the co2 solenoid due to constant on & off.
 

Deep

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I’ve tried shutting off both(co2 & feed pump) but the ph in the chamber continues to go down, I think is due to residual co2 still circulating. And once back on it kick the DKH too high and Alkatronic shuts off again. I’m trying just turning off the co2 now, once the co2 back on it’ll take some time before the ph is back normal and hoping DKH will fall in the middle of the set range. I have not setup with apex yet, but will try using apex to shut off co2 once setup and see if it’s better. From one of your apex graph, it seems the co2 is getting shut off a lot and are concern of the longevity of the co2 solenoid due to constant on & off.

A solenoid is meant to constantly go on and off. So there should be no concern with that. Infact you could argue that when the solenoid stays on for a stretch you are infact causing more damage to it.
After you get your PH probe setup, let the residual CO2 in the reactor escape, then make sure that that solenoid shuts off below certain PH.
 
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