Reef Emergency: Doser Malfunction 20dkH+ within 6hours

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friendlyguy

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Dear Community!
We are currently in desperate need for help. The doser of my gf went crazy and didn't stop dosing fauna marine kh solution into her tank.
I noticed a squeaking noise from her office when i came home and wondered about it. When i checked the canister was already empty, and it had over 2 Liter in it.
So it dumped, over a period of 6 hours, something around 2 Litre of KH Solution into the system.
The system has a total volume of 600l.
We tried to measure how high it exactly is but none of our tests go this high. The Hanna HI772 displays 20 and blinks so... 20dkh+.
Calcium is probably absent by now.
I`ve read that it might be a solution to lower the alk by adding acid to the system?
Can somebody elaborate how we could do that? (we have citric acid powder which we use to clean our pumps, so we could mix some acid...)
Since we dont know the concentration i guess its dose a specific amount, measure: repeat.
If we could we would just do a big water change: But we neither have enough rodi water nor do we have enough salt.
We live in switzerland and its 21:00 so all shops are closed.
I do have more saltwater tanks that are running fine: do you recommend to move her corals to other systems?
Which would require breaking / ripping them of the stones.
Do you think it will kill fish / shrimps?
Will it kill anemones?
Any recommendation on how to proceed?

Kind regards!
 
BRS

dvgyfresh

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I accidentally dosed alkalinity to where my Hanna checker was blinking at 20dkh also. Look at the fish / corals - are they struggling? Gasping? For me I noticed nothing different, and the worst thing to do is overreact and make more changes. I simply did 10g water change weekly + stopped dosing. The alk fell naturally over time back to where I keep it, I experienced no losses and I have anemones/fish/coral/shrimp ect.. even my sps corals survived and showed no signs of struggle
 

nereefpat

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I wouldn't attempt to drop the alk in the display with acid, as any big KH drop will also drop the pH. I would do as big of a water change as you can, if you have to get distilled water from the grocery store and borrow salt from a buddy or whatever. Then hopefully some will precipitate out and corals will be fine.

What kind of corals?
 
BRS

Reefahholic

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Typically I’d say do nothing, but a jump that big with ALK will most likely RTN your Acro’s. The problem is making more changes. I’d personally do a 50% water change first. Then slowly start bringing it down with more smaller water changes. Probably too late for some corals depending on what’s in the tank. Others may pull through just fine.
 

Reefahholic

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I wouldn't attempt to drop the alk in the display with acid, as any big KH drop will also drop the pH. I would do as big of a water change as you can, if you have to get distilled water from the grocery store and borrow salt from a buddy or whatever. Then hopefully some will precipitate out and corals will be fine.

What kind of corals?
Agreed. The pH will take a hard dive.
 

vetteguy53081

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As it gradually rose, gradually bring it back down either with water changes or Add Nothing for 72 hrs and test each day to see how much it has dropped until reahing safe level
 

saltyhog

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I've had this happen twice with faulty dosers/timers. The first time the tank was just slightly cloudy and everything did fine after a 50% water change. The second time, the tank looked like it was filled with milk! Every fish, invert and coral was dead in a very short time. If everything is looking ok, just do a big water change and monitor.
 
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KathCH

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That gf is me ... it is a simple Jebao doser pump and I was the source of the problem, accidentally set the pump to manual dosing and it kept on dosing as I didn't stop that.

As to the tank: the corals are wide open this morning and also the anemones are now returning to the light after they have been hiding under a rock for the last 12 hours. This morning my dkh is at 18. My thought is to keep on tracking the alkalinity and calcium development for another 48 hours and not stressing the corals and fish further at the moment. All fish and coral are alive, water is clear.

20211015_103947.jpg 20211015_103957.jpg 20211015_104010.jpg 20211015_104015.jpg 20211015_104029.jpg
 
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Tamberav

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I was worried about this happening so I used small containers of alk/ca that I just topped them off more frequently. That way the doser could only add so much before going dry.

Glad everything is looking ok. It’s crazy but healthy corals are actually quite resilient. You may see some delayed effects. Time will tell. I would just be doing partial water changes.
 

KathCH

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I was worried about this happening so I used small containers of alk/ca that I just topped them off more frequently. That way the doser could only add so much before going dry.

Glad everything is looking ok. It’s crazy but healthy corals are actually quite resilient. You may see some delayed effects. Time will tell. I would just be doing partial water changes.
Yes, I think the real inpact will show in 3-5 weeks. Let's cross fingers!
 
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KathCH

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Furrher update: dkh is constantly going down 0.8 per day for some days in a row already. Ca is a bit low, Mg is in the higher section, seems like the impact was limited in the end. Unfortunately 2 of my fish didn't survive the heavy swing, still monitoring corals but so far everything survived.
With a dkh at 12 I will now end this broadcast of our reef emergency. Will slowly increase Ca and hoping that my reef forgets this episode ...
Would I choose a different approach looking back? No. My opinion is, that a huge waterchange wouldn't have saved my fish and would have just added additional swings. We don't know for sure, what the highest dkh was in this journey, but it was 20 or slightly above. I would have gone with the huge waterchange in case the dkh wouldn't have been dropping constantly, just on a side note.

Thank you all and Happy reefing! Also a special thanks to my Love for going through this with me and supporting me all along
 
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