Corals dying after tank upgrade and water change - ALK finally lower at 13 but Ammonia is 4! HELP!

Discussion in 'Coral' started by Batiatus, Apr 18, 2010.

  1. bookfish

    bookfish Guest

    Those are both reasonable approaches. The reason I would approach it differently is that both bacteria and NH4 adsorbing resin is very specific in what it'll do. In an established tank that had a death and an ammonia spike these would be on my list too. But in the case of a disturbed older sand bed liberating stuff into the system, I think there's more than just ammonia toxicity to consider and we don't actually test for a lot of stuff that could be causing trouble. Water changes will dilute the nasties over time along with carbon (not too much, watch the ph) heavy, wet skimming (yum!) and time.
  2. Mr. Ugly

    Mr. Ugly Past President

    Btw, if the resin in your RODI is spent, it can start releasing ammonia that was captured during during the breakdown of the chloramines.

    Make sure your freshly made RODI water isn't showing ammonia, or you could be making things worse.

    /Chemistry PSA
  3. Batiatus

    Batiatus Guest

    Lost about 5 corals and one of our green anemone. I transferred the rest of the corals to the 12GL nano we got. that was already cycled and established. I bough it from someone who had it for a year with live rocks and sand. Went to Dolphin yesterday and got me a 5 gallon water. Put it on my nano and tested it after 1 hour. My Ammonia went up and my alk is now at 14. I also replace the light 13w at 10K. should I replace the actinic also? is that enough light? My bubble is showing all the skeleton now, but I can see a bubble or two so will it survive?

    as for my 100GL still same story alk at 13 and ammonia at 1-2. I installed the new skimmer last night. and its working pretty good it collected 5x than my sea clone skimmer in just 10 hours

    Wifey is giving me till sunday to fix it if not she wants everything sold
  4. Apon

    Apon Volunteer

    your ammonia went up after you put it in the nano? that doesn't sound right.
  5. Gomer

    Gomer Honorary Member

    it sounds right if the corals he transferred had rotting coral or rotting rock.
  6. Batiatus

    Batiatus Guest

    OK so water from Dolphin spike up my alk to 14 and ammonia to 1-2. And water from Aquarium showroom spike it to 17. So must be there water. I just talk to someguy and he said he has the same problem. The Alk is too high when he buys from Dolphin and Showroom. So where do i buy? The Reverse osmosis my frined has takes forever. Im thinking of getting my own. I saw a 100GPD for $160
  7. Batiatus

    Batiatus Guest

    my ammon went up after I change the water. i tested before I the water change and the alk and ammonia went up
  8. Mr. Ugly

    Mr. Ugly Past President

    Ammonia is likely from the dying corals, as Tony said.

    But did you double check your RODI water for ammonia?
  9. CookieJar

    CookieJar Guest

    With your high alk values, are you sure your test kit is correct? The water might have a more regular alk. I agree with verifying RODI with ammonia to be on the safe side. A new skimmer is key, while I haven't used the seaclone, it looks like a complete POS skimmer. I've seen them at the Petclub and they're a joke- hardly any bubbles are created and definitely no bubble tower.
  10. Batiatus

    Batiatus Guest

    I added the corals on 4/20, yesterday (4/21) morning I tested for Alk and Ammonia and its was Alk at 12.5 and Ammonia was at 1. I tested again yesterday afternoon around 5:30 and the Alk was at 12.5 Ammonia at 1. Then I went to doplhin and bought 5 GL of watter. I replaced 5Gl (my nano is 12GL) and waited about 90 minutes and my Ammonia is at 2 and Alk at 14. I forgot to test the new water
  11. Batiatus

    Batiatus Guest

    Lost both green and red anemone and some other corals. The bubble is showing all skeleton, but it has a 3-4 bubbles. will it recover? Its all in my nano 12GL. its has a 13W PL. I just replaced the day light from 7K to 10K but I cant find the actinic. Where can I buy one. is that enough light?
  12. yardartist

    yardartist Guest

    I hope your wife gives you more than Sunday. Get some more water from DPV and test it. Better yet get water you know is good and keep up the changes. Neptunes is in that area and they have fresh and sea. I use their fresh.

    I threw coral skeletons out too soon early on. Not saying it will grow back, but wish I had left a few in the tank longer.

    For the lights, all I can say is what I use. On the 13g refugium tank I have 18W 50/50 PC with a rack several inches below the lights. The algae get light through and around the rack and the corals zoas, blastos, and montis are all at about the right place to grow.

    Sorry this is happening. I nearly made myself sick when my tank went berserk over a year ago.
  13. Thales

    Thales Past President

    IMO, the Ammonia is your problem and small water changes aren't going to help. Just slightly diluting poison still leaves poison so a 20% water change is like putting out 20% of a house fire.

    Your tank is cycling again, so that puts you between a rock and a hard place. Either you do huge water changes often (forget buying water, get a huge container, Amquel water from your house, and add salt mix), pull all the corals and fish (not sure if you are already doing this) and let the tank cycle, or you can try adding Amquel directly to the tank daily as it will detoxify the ammonia but will still show ammonia on your test kit and may slow down the cycle. I would forget about alk and forget about light and deal with the ammonia.

    I would say the ammonia is going up in the nano after water changes because the dying coral tissue is getting disturbed, moving off the coral and starting to rot. In an uncycled system, ammonia can rise quick.

    FWIW, the only tank moves that I have seem work either move the sand in place, or have been bare bottom.

    Oh - how are you testing salinity?

    Sorry you are going through this.
  14. bookfish

    bookfish Guest

    If the losses are continuing and the readings are consistently that high then I agree w/ the cuttle man. Given that you may be in the position of not having a cycled system at the house, I'd turn over anything still alive to someone who can keep it till your system settles down. I think I might pull all the current sand and either go bare bottom for a while (for ease of cleaning) or if you must have sand, get all new and seed it with a sm. handfull of the old sand. I think the old sand is at fault for much of your problem.
  15. GreshamH

    GreshamH Guest

    Both Dolphin and The Aquarium Showroom use their own water in house and for their service customers. It's HIGHLY doubtful the water they sell is so off and has ammonia in it. I think it's rather lame you are blaming them and you honestly have no clue where it's coming from!

    TAS services dozens upon dozens of tanks. IF they had such bad water they'd be loosing customers fist over fist. Dolphin breeds fish in that water. They'd be loosing fry fist over fist.
  16. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer President

    I agree with the ammonia being the problem! The ammonia was high but little to no nitrite... Def not cycled! I still think some amquel or prime and live bacteria will help in the short term. Get yourself a rodi so you will know the water is good long term.

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