Still having phosphate issues

Hilltopreef90

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I have a 90 gallon reef tank, it’s been cycled and fish were added about 3-4 weeks ago, so food could be the issue as far as phosphates ‍♀️
I never tested regularly in the past unless I had issues like algae or corals not doing well.
The tank seems fine, I only have a few soft corals so it’s hard to judge by them.
My phosphate is at .22 ppm using a Hanna checker, nitrate is between 1-2 ( seachem test) it’s hard to know exactly with the color chart. I’ve not tested for anything else this week, last week alkalinity was fine magnesium and calcium high but I found my salinity was up a bit which explained the calcium and magnesium.
I’m planning to use chaeto in my refugium and as soon as I can get some chaeto I figured I’d begin running the refugium.
I’m concerned if I start adding chemicals to lower the phosphate that it’ll mess with my nitrate.
I do have some chemipure I can add but I’m not sure I should mess with anything.
My plan is to continue with my water changes maybe do 20% this week, start my refugium and back off on feeding.
Other then the phosphate issue the tank is looking good.
One other question, the MP40’s come with a foam cover to prevent fish from getting into the powerhead, I have some small fish so I left the foam on but they get dirty so fast and look ugly. Are they really needed, I’ll take ugly over a fish getting chopped up but wonder if there’s other options and why they haven’t addressed the issue with something better then foam covers considering they are top of the line and expensive ‍♀️
I have a nano tank that also runs with high phosphates but the corals do great (only soft corals) I have a huge colony of pulsing Xenia that is definitely thriving and my maroon clown loves hiding in it so it’s there to stay and I’m good with Xenia and the potential of it taking over a tank.
My question is what does Xenia take or add to the tank and could it affect my phosphate level?
Once again other then the level the tank is doing great and has been established for 5-6 years.
 
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LordofCinder

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Did you start your tank with brand new dry rocks? If so, they usually come with some phosphate built into them, it takes months to drain the phosphate out using GFO or phosguard. If you did start with dry rock, thats probably your phosphate source.
 
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Hilltopreef90

Hilltopreef90

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I started with rocks that were previously in my tanks, I soaked in bleach, rinsed soaked in regular water added prime, rinsed a couple more times and left out to dry before I added it to my new aquarium.
Idk ‍♀️ would they still have phosphate inside them? Once I get my refugium going will it eventually lower and control my phosphates
 
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hobie61

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Did you start your tank with brand new dry rocks? If so, they usually come with some phosphate built into them, it takes months to drain the phosphate out using GFO or phosguard. If you did start with dry rock, thats probably your phosphate source.
May be why i am having so much trouble lowering it and loosing corals sporadically. Not fun. 9 months into it. Thanks for the thoughts.
 

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