Transitioning to calcium reactor, how much to continue to dose?

sdreef

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I am transitioning from dosing calcium/ alkalinity solution to using a calcium reactor.

I appreciate any recommendations and I have two main questions:
1. How much I should continue dosing as the calcium reactor gets going. Does my math look correct?
2. Where should I direct the effluent in order to counteract lowering pH. Two options a) refugium with chaeto or b) skimmer intake

The system water volume is 1000L.
My current daily alkalinity consumption is 90 mL of alkalinity solution at a concentration of 1mL = 0.036 meq/L. 90 mL * 0.036 meq/L = 3.24 meq/L daily
The current alkalinity in the system is 7.8 dKH or approximately 2.8meq/L
The recommended starting flow for the reactor is 50 L / day
The effluent typically falls in the range of 40-60 dKH according to the manual

The alkalinity I will be adding via the reactor is the concentration of the effluent minus the alkalinity present in the water initially.

The output from the effluent from the reactor is unknown, but the manual reports a typical range is estimated to be 40-60 dKH. 40 dKH = 14.3 meq/L. 60 dKH = 21.4 meq/L.

So with the effluent I will be adding
With 40 dKH output I will be adding between 14.3 minus 2.8 = 11.5 meq/L
With 60 dKH output I will be adding 21.4 minus 2.8 = 18.6 meq/L

Starting recommended effluent flow rate is 50 liters / 24 hours but can be increased up to 350 liters/ 24 hours.
With 40 dKH effluent output I will be adding 11.5 meq/L * 50 Liters / 1000L = 0.575 meq/L daily
With 60 dKH effluent output I will be adding 18.6 meq/L * 50 Liters/ 1000L = 0.93 meq/L daily

So at my current rate of consumption I will need to continue to dose initially as I convert over to the calcium reactor based on the initial calcium reactors recommended flow rate. I will need to dose the daily consumption minus the alkalinity added by the calcium reactor.

With 40 dKH effluent output 3.24 - 0.575 = 2.665 / .036 = 74 mL
With 60 dKH effluent output 3.24-0.93 = 2.31 / .036 = 64 mL

If my math is right, I initially need to continue dosing between 64 and 74 mL. I will reduce the dosing a bit below the low range effluent calculation when I get the reactor started in order to avoid increasing the alkalinity, and will plan to manually make adjustments as needed as it's much easier to add alkalinity. Thanks for taking a look and any advice.
 
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Billldg

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Their should be a conversion calculator on the Marine Depot website.

Actually, BRS has one in the video below.

 

Tcook

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The output from the effluent from the reactor is unknown, but the manual reports a typical range is estimated to be 40-60 dKH. 40 dKH = 14.3 meq/L. 60 dKH = 21.4 meq/L

This can change significantly due to various factors including the type of media you use. Save yourself a headache and measure what you are getting. Let the reactor run 24-48 hours between changes.
 
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sdreef

sdreef

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Thanks for sharing this. I had tried this, and maybe I'm not using it correctly, but I wasn't able to get it to work for me. I'm currently dosing the red sea foundation alkalinity solution. It isn't one of the listed options, and I checked several of the listed products (not all of them), and I wasn't able to find an option with the same alkalinity concentration as what I'm dosing.
 
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sdreef

sdreef

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This can change significantly due to various factors including the type of media you use. Save yourself a headache and measure what you are getting. Let the reactor run 24-48 hours between changes.
Thanks, I will take your advice and measure the effluent once things get going and stabilize. I'm planning on doing this when I can be home for a few consecutive days to do my best to avoid problems. I'm a little nervous about the potential instability.
 
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sdreef

sdreef

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Definitely have your effluent flow into your refugium with chaeto. Finds this helps reduce CO2 in sump and chaeto grows like crazy.
Thanks, that was my initial plan, and then I saw several people recommend placing it by the skimmer intake and I wasn't sure if one was more effective in reducing CO2. I like the idea of the chaeto utilizing the CO2.
 

PeterC99

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Thanks, that was my initial plan, and then I saw several people recommend placing it by the skimmer intake and I wasn't sure if one was more effective in reducing CO2. I like the idea of the chaeto utilizing the CO2.
I’m impressed with your transition plan.

I made the mistake of going cold turkey with turning on the calcium reactor and turning off my Alk/Calc dosing. I was so worried that I would over dose with both systems. Had a minor swing while I fine tuned the CaRX but got things stabilized in a couple of days.

FYI - found I had to run CaRX pH much lower than advertised. I run the CO2 when pH is between 6.25 and 6.45. (You mileage may vary). Also now dosing some Kalk to get pH and Alk in aquarium where I want - pH 8.15 to 8.35 and Alk at 9.1.
 
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sdreef

sdreef

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I’m impressed with your transition plan.

I made the mistake of going cold turkey with turning on the calcium reactor and turning off my Alk/Calc dosing. I was so worried that I would over dose with both systems. Had a minor swing while I fine tuned the CaRX but got things stabilized in a couple of days.

FYI - found I had to run CaRX pH much lower than advertised. I run the CO2 when pH is between 6.25 and 6.45. (You mileage may vary). Also now dosing some Kalk to get pH and Alk in aquarium where I want - pH 8.15 to 8.35 and Alk at 9.1.

Your thread on lessons learned was helpful. Thanks for sharing that.

My pH currently ranges between 8.0 - 8.3. I was considering kalk or running the effluent through a second chamber. I figured I'll take it stepwise and I'll tackle that once I'm able to stabilize the other chemistry with the reactor.
 

PeterC99

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Your thread on lessons learned was helpful. Thanks for sharing that.

My pH currently ranges between 8.0 - 8.3. I was considering kalk or running the effluent through a second chamber. I figured I'll take it stepwise and I'll tackle that once I'm able to stabilize the other chemistry with the reactor.
Great plan!
 
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sdreef

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Are you still trying to work this out, or is it underway?

Still working out. I recognize there are some unknown variables in there, so I was waiting until I can be at home available a few days straight to make adjustments during the transition. I'll probably get the reactor set up in 2 weeks. Just wanted to be prepared.
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

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Still working out. I recognize there are some unknown variables in there, so I was waiting until I can be at home available a few days straight to make adjustments during the transition. I'll probably get the reactor set up in 2 weeks. Just wanted to be prepared.

Yes, having plenty of time to make sure alk isn't going wild is a good plan. :)

There's a lot of trial and error adjustment to stabilize.
 

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