Trident: CA Rise, MG Drop, ALK Stable?

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JDnKY

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I just had the exact same issue, my calcium and Mg jumped from 440 to 750 and 1340 to 1100 in 3-4 days according to the trident. I got the replace reagent 2 notification so I went ahead and did both the CA and MG, and now they test normal again. Didn’t notice anything weird and there was a good amount of reagent still left in both bottles.

I did some research when this first happened to me and found that the angle of the intake tube in the bottles can cause this, one of their solutions was to overfill the bottles so having extra reagent when it’s time to change them is normal. I’ve also found that they can drift off if the Trident isn’t calibrated every two months.
 
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Gabaghoul

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I'm having this same issue right now with my unit. Started to notice the CA drift north. Did Rea Sea test kits to verify and while the Trident was reading 450, then 560, then 650 up until BAD CA RANGE, Red Sea kit moved very little in either direction from around 400. I recalibrated and it fixed itself. But then in a few weeks, it started to drift again until it hit BAD CA RANGE. So I replaced my reagent last night And CA is still in the bad range. I have a call with Trident today. I do expect if I recalibrate, it will be fixed but then in a few weeks start to drift. No issues with ALK or MG. Very glad about the ALK. Thats the one that really matters. :)
 
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I'm having this same issue right now with my unit. Started to notice the CA drift north. Did Rea Sea test kits to verify and while the Trident was reading 450, then 560, then 650 up until BAD CA RANGE, Red Sea kit moved very little in either direction from around 400. I recalibrated and it fixed itself. But then in a few weeks, it started to drift again until it hit BAD CA RANGE. So I replaced my reagent last night And CA is still in the bad range. I have a call with Trident today. I do expect if I recalibrate, it will be fixed but then in a few weeks start to drift. No issues with ALK or MG. Very glad about the ALK. Thats the one that really matters. :)
Check the down tube for reagent B and be sure it looks to be hanging straight down from the cap. It sounds like you are pulling in air during the tests when you get near the end of the reagent bottle and if the down tube is angled any it may be doing this sooner than expected.
What percentage of Reagent B did Fusion report was left when the numbers started climbing?
 

Gabaghoul

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Check the down tube for reagent B and be sure it looks to be hanging straight down from the cap. It sounds like you are pulling in air during the tests when you get near the end of the reagent bottle and if the down tube is angled any it may be doing this sooner than expected.
What percentage of Reagent B did Fusion report was left when the numbers started climbing?

I think it was around 18% if memory serves. To put this in context, on June 15th, my CA read 396. On June 22nd, it read 784, the very next test was displayed Bad CA Range.

Just looked at the down tube. Hard to tell but it could have had a slight angle. But in either case, I have full bottles of reagent at this point and still bad readings. BTW, I have had the unit for maybe 7 or 8 months. Its been nothing but awesome until now. And to be honest I dont trust any tests, including Trident and verify everything. If my corals are happy - growing, extending and showing color thats what matters. I only use Trident as an indication of fluctuation, more of a directional thing versus exact measurements. I would never advise anyone to set and forget. No such thing.
 
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@Gabaghoul
18% was likely pulling air.
From what my dealings with this issue; When you change the reagent it only tells the Trident reset the amount of reagent but it will not clear the fault. In this case you will continue to get the error CA range even though the bottle now has enough for a proper test. I’d would go to the Trident menu and first select Prime B and apply. Once B prime is complete select Restart Trident option at the bottom and apply. Once the restart has completed perform a manual combined test to see what you get. When I was having the issue I would have to do the above actions to clear the error. Once this is done and you have had a couple successful tests results then you could calibrate with the solution. I wouldn’t do it before in case there is something remaining in the lines causing the error.
 
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I have had this issue going on for a while and put in a help ticket with Neptune. Customer service was awesome, the answer however was not. They stated that the problem is environmental as they have had this problem with multiple systems but when they replace the system, the new system does the same thing at the customers house and the old unit does not do it in their lab. They stated that they are in tests now trying to figure out what is causing it, but think that its something environmental in the house. I filled out a survey about everything. For their research. They told me that most people had it start happening around 60% of re-agent exhausted. Mine starts around 40. So calcium and Magnesium are useless to me but Alk never seems to be effected. Please put in a ticket so they get more information to use to get a fix for this. Very expensive piece of equipment for only 33% to work accurately.
 
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Mine doing the same around 30-35% before as well. Some of my issue was the pickup tube being a little out of alignment when looking at it but when the top was screwed on to a bottle it would make the angle worse. I think the rubber connector was sticking to the top just a little when twisting the cap back on. What I did that really seemed to help was aligning the tube, as best my eye could see, while off the reagent bottle and then put a small piece of tape to hold the tube coming from the test manifold to the bottle top. When changing reagents instead of twisting the top off the bottle, I now twist the bottle away from the cap. After checking the items and making any changes support recommended, coupled with supporting the tube to the top of the caps, I get to 15-20% before I notice a rise.

I’ve relocated the Trident higher and lower and adjusted a few other things over time while in contact with support and agree that they have awesome and been quick to respond too.
 
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To anyone else they may read this thread, please note that “environmental” is referring things like the height of the Trident in relation to the sample tube intake, user handling during reagent changes, the trident being in a dark cabinet versus an open shelf in a bright room (or combination where the cabinet may be open or closed portion of the testing times)..... I say this because in talks with other groups I’ve heard complaints about what they are perceiving as “environmental” to be just things like ambient temp and humidity.

Also, once the test results make a big jump for no apparent reason 2-3 times in a row and your somewhat close to the the bottom of the bottle, change it before you get to an error condition. Reach out to support if the reported amount remaining is higher than normal or you feel like something is wrong. But sitting there watching the numbers continue get higher and higher until the fault alert appears is just causing yourself more stress (trust me I know!) If my Ca results jump a little btwn tests, 10-20ppm, or I notice a slight uptrend in the numbers I start checking other things like PO4 and dosing lines, however if they jump 30-40+ my first thought is to check the reagents because they are likely getting low or something may be amiss with the testing.

For example: I could install a top of the line HVAC system that monitors itself for performance and I do the yearly maintenance automatically, but I still have to rely on the User not to bury the unit with grass clippings and that they will change the air filters like they should. Once the device leaves Neptune, they are reliant on the user to maintain it and alert them when a problem arises whereas I at least get to check the AC unit myself on-site when an error presents itself electronically. So please reach out to any company’s support channels when you feel you have an issue.
 

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I have had this issue going on for a while and put in a help ticket with Neptune. Customer service was awesome, the answer however was not. They stated that the problem is environmental as they have had this problem with multiple systems but when they replace the system, the new system does the same thing at the customers house and the old unit does not do it in their lab. They stated that they are in tests now trying to figure out what is causing it, but think that its something environmental in the house. I filled out a survey about everything. For their research. They told me that most people had it start happening around 60% of re-agent exhausted. Mine starts around 40. So calcium and Magnesium are useless to me but Alk never seems to be effected. Please put in a ticket so they get more information to use to get a fix for this. Very expensive piece of equipment for only 33% to work accurately.


Just got off the phone with Neptune. Exactly as you described Army Reefer. I just filled out the questionnaire as well. We'll see if they find a solution in the coming months as they say it could take a long time to figure out what's going . Could be 6 months or longer. Who knows. Thank God the Alk still works. If it wasnt, I would have given up on them .
 

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As of this AM the the the CA shows 627 and manual test still at 400. The Mg has lowered from 1308 at 00:17 Wednesday to 1251 00:17 Thursday.

If the reagents were low causing the CA to test high, then shouldn’t the Mg reading be rising also if the reagent is low?
Did a ticket yesterday for this reason. They had me do a factory reset and everything is now working good. I left the ticket open as I want to understand what is going on.
 
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@Gabaghoul
18% was likely pulling air.
From what my dealings with this issue; When you change the reagent it only tells the Trident reset the amount of reagent but it will not clear the fault. In this case you will continue to get the error CA range even though the bottle now has enough for a proper test. I’d would go to the Trident menu and first select Prime B and apply. Once B prime is complete select Restart Trident option at the bottom and apply. Once the restart has completed perform a manual combined test to see what you get. When I was having the issue I would have to do the above actions to clear the error. Once this is done and you have had a couple successful tests results then you could calibrate with the solution. I wouldn’t do it before in case there is something remaining in the lines causing the error.
I wish I had seen this post this morning. I had to do my first alk bottle change when the reading jumped from 8.5 to over 12. I ran into the same error issue and the unit got stuck in a loop doing about four straight Alk tests and then eventually reporting an intake line error.
Once I did a purge of the intake line the error went away and it did a perfect test.
 

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I have this calcium shifting problem for almost a year now. Talked to Apex customer service for several months, got a replacement unit, and several packs of reagents, and eventually gave up on it. The Trident has become an alkalinity only tester for me for many months.

Then couple weeks ago I realized I can use my tank water for calibration, using reading from my test kit as input, so that the alk reading on both match, so I didn't just that. It also bring the calcium magnesium back to range. And so far, it has creep up again for more than a week.
 

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I also had this problem for almost a year now. The first three months when I first got the unit it was awesome. Then all the sudden cal went up. The funny thing is I using trident manual testing tested the calibration fluid it was bang on with the label on the bottle(I did use salifer and hanna to check the fluid Its abou the same compare to the number on the label). Once I put the sample line back into my sump the calcium level is constantly 60ppm higher. I also tried put newly mixed salt(tropic marine pro) in a small bottole to test it. It also comes out 60PPM.(should be 440ish at 1.026 it shows 500ish on trident). How come it test the calibration fluid bang on but My tank water off? How?
 
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My problem is both Calcium and magnesium. I would say Mg is the bigger issue. Just like the rest of you the unit worked fine for the first 3-4 months then the readings started to climb versus what my test kits are showing. At first I thought it was the cuvette getting stained by the reagents so I cleaned it out and that did not do anything. I then suspected the dosing pump was losing calibration or the rollers were getting worn. After reading @dbq5anlxj post I am now super confused as to what is happening.

Right now I am just letting it just test Alk as I am really getting tired of the 40% of bottle "A" not being used up.
 
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dbq5anlxj

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My problem is both Calcium and magnesium. I would say Mg is the bigger issue. Just like the rest of you the unit worked fine for the first 3-4 months then the readings started to climb versus what my test kits are showing. At first I thought it was the cuvette getting stained by the reagents so I cleaned it out and that did not do anything. I then suspected the dosing pump was losing calibration or the rollers were getting worn. After reading @dbq5anlxj post I am now super confused as to what is happening.

Right now I am just letting it just test Alk as I am really getting tired of 40% of the bottle "A" not being used.
I Just popped another calibration fluid. And run a manual test via trident. label shows alk8.5 cal 410 mag 1300. trident shows alk 8.41 cal440 mag1269 (I'd say pretty close except the cal is a still a bit higher). I then recalibrated trident with left over fluid and put the sample line back into sump,.prime it and did a manual test bang…cal is 60ppm higher hahaha... I tired So many things(filter my tank water then test it and taking the trident apart clean the vial and tubes No luck So far)

What salt mix are you using? I know few people using instant ocean salt dose not have this issue . I use redsea blue and tropical marine pro. I'm guessing.
 

robbyg

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I Just popped another calibration fluid. And run a manual test via trident. label shows alk8.5 cal 410 mag 1300. trident shows alk 8.41 cal440 mag1269 (I'd say pretty close except the cal is a still a bit higher). I then recalibrated trident with left over fluid and put the sample line back into sump,.prime it and did a manual test bang…cal is 60ppm higher hahaha... I tired So many things(filter my tank water then test it and taking the trident apart clean the vial and tubes No luck So far)

What salt mix are you using? I know few people using instant ocean salt dose not have this issue . I use redsea blue and tropical marine pro. I'm guessing.
I am using IO reef crystals so I am not sure what to make of all of this. I do notice that after a 20% water change my Alk, Mg and Ca are even higher. I typically turn off the two part dosing pumps for two days until they drop back into range. I have no idea how people are using the Auto dosing functions but I would not touch it with a stick!

I am starting to get a little disillusioned with the Trident. I think some guidance from Neptune would help. The only possibility I can see left is that the B&C reagents are deteriorating before the 60 day period. That might explain why the ALK does not drift as much since a fresh bottle is put in every 30 days.

It's also annoying that I cannot do a calibration every 30 days because Neptune has Zero stock of extra calibration fluid.
 
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