tank maintenance chat

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tank maintenance chat

Post by blennieluvr on Tue Sep 10, 2013 11:56 pm

Did some tank maintenance this eve and decided to post about it hoping that others are diving into tank stuff with the fall season upon us and would join in on the discussion.

My 75g has had debris floating around in it for some time and it's been bothering me. It finally occurred to me that it's probably because my sump is still not configured right and my chaeto is in the return pump chamber. I hope I remedied this by stuffing the chaeto ball with the skimmer on the lighted side of the sump. I threw a sock over the end of the siphon tube and drained some water into a bucket through it! Worked like a charm for the little bit of detritus and broken down chaeto that was in there. That should help!

Also, I cleaned off my reflectors and replaced half my bulbs.

Tasks for the near future:
1) reconfig the sump so my skimmer sits in a chamber that doesn't fluctuate and my chaeto has it's own space
2) auto top-off - I'm thinking of just using an autolifter with a container near my tank this time so there's less chance of a huge dump of water and salinity problem. I'll have to surf the net for ideas of attractive options as my stand is full with just the sump so it will need to sit by my tank which is in our living area.
3) setup my dosing pumps again which means more regular testing as I slacked off over the summer
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Re: tank maintenance chat

Post by GoodToGo on Wed Sep 11, 2013 9:11 pm

Never an end to maintenance...

Here's a question for others with more experience than me on cleaning. I'm trying to balance enough light for corals versus too much light for algae. I don't think I have an algae "problem", but I don't know if I have room to go with a little less light or not. The corals are happy and growing, so I know they have enough light. I clean a light film of algae of the front glass with a magnet every three days or so, then do a better cleaning once a week or so. A few patches of hair algae, and a couple spots of cyano that I suck up with a baster. Does this sound like a normal schedule, or does this sound like excessive light/algae?

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Re: tank maintenance chat

Post by blennieluvr on Wed Sep 11, 2013 10:19 pm

My experience is that with algae, less light causes it more than more light. However, cyano's most common culprit seems to be lack of flow. I went with a bit less rock in this tank hoping for more water movement for a healthier tank for that reason and so far, it seems to be working. Your maintenance schedule sounds fairly normal, actually. How often and much do you feed and what's your photo period (as in, how long are your lights on?) Sometimes you can cut back some on feeding to reduce algae. Cutting back on the amount of time your lights are on can help too. Oh, another thing to be sure is that you're using RODI with as near 0 readings as possible. I'm a bit of a hypocrit right now as my water change had a TDS reading of 23 last night. EEK! I'm hoping we figure out where and how to hook up the new RODI soon to remedy this. If you don't have a TDS meter to test your water, the club owns one that you can check out. Even better, get an inline one for right off your RODI like I have. I am not sure that I ever asked if you had on RODI filter but judging by the look of your tank, you must.
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Re: tank maintenance chat

Post by Swanwillow on Fri Sep 13, 2013 10:04 am

I need to scrape glass and do a water change. FINALLY got my auto top off working yesterday... I've been slacking
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Re: tank maintenance chat

Post by blennieluvr on Fri Sep 13, 2013 10:44 pm

My tank maintenance for today was scraping corraline algae. I've had just a little bit of it for some time (I let it just stay on the front glass cuz I was so happy to see it.) but now it's starting to take off in my 10 month old tank.
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Re: tank maintenance chat

Post by blennieluvr on Mon Sep 16, 2013 8:58 pm

So, I'm kind of talking to myself here lately (except Seaponygirl...thank you!) but I guess I've been guilty of worse things and I keep hoping more of you will chime in if there's something to talk about so....

Tank maintenance task for today was water change (always do them Mondays) on the 75g and washing filter socks. I have a love/hate relationship with my filter socks. They do a nice job but I really don't like how long washing them ties up my washer. My dirty laundry doesn't stop piling up just because I'm washing fish supplies. Smile
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Re: tank maintenance chat

Post by seaponygirl on Wed Sep 18, 2013 9:49 am

I am starting to think my HOB filter and skimmer need to be upgraded to a sump. My skimmer does a good job, but doesn't
move enough water, so in reality I need to add another pump to break the surface. Mine is a 45 FWLR. As far as maintenance I do 8 gallon water change over the weekend and top off around Wednesday. I do need to be more diligent about testing. Keep one me, about that!

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Re: tank maintenance chat

Post by blennieluvr on Wed Sep 18, 2013 11:25 am

[quote="seaponygirl"]I am starting to think my HOB filter and skimmer need to be upgraded to a sump.quote]

Time for an upgrade! Smile
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Re: tank maintenance chat

Post by seaponygirl on Sat Sep 28, 2013 10:23 am

I'd like to know your daily cleaning, maintaince schedule. Maybe if I knew what you did I could get mine in better order. Oh, and what was that discussion you mentioned, that I might have been interested in? I'm finally back on line so I'm ready to rumble!

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Re: tank maintenance chat

Post by blennieluvr on Sat Sep 28, 2013 11:32 am

Let me see if I can remember....

Daily -
I feed and top-off both tanks for sure every day. That is, until I get an auto top-off going at which point I will just feed every day and fill reservoir when needed. For feeding, I shut down my return pump and wait until the food is gone and then turn it back on so food bits don't make their way to the sump so much. The 15g requires target feeding. I really need to DIY a feeder so I don't have to get my hands wet pretty much every day. (I think this sounds like a good meeting project.) In truth, I feed this tank probably four - five days as week, not daily.

Weekly - 5g water changes on each tank (75g and 15g). During the water change, I change the filter sock if needed and clean out my skimmer. I siphon out of the sump if it looks dirty as detritus seems to collect down there even with all of my attempts to keep it from doing so. I have to be super careful with the nano as I'm displacing so much water. I want the temp and salinity to be as close as possible. I must have flubbed once a while back on one of those cuz my sun coral took a turn for the worse and is still in recovery mode.

My brain is kind of dead today. I do other things too but they are mostly just by watching and seeing what might need attending.
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Re: tank maintenance chat

Post by blennieluvr on Sun Sep 29, 2013 2:14 pm

Others can feel free to chime in. Smile
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Re: tank maintenance chat

Post by cdness on Mon Sep 30, 2013 9:22 am

I cleaned my glass last night Wink However I was more concerned with the boat getting into the yard after dark so I didn't pay much attention to the tank.

RODI unit is getting fired up later today to make some top-off water then again later to get the amount needed for a full water change on the QT tank. The purple Tang's tank needs a full run through and cleaning so I am draining and scrubbing the tank this week.

On the 125 there will be a 20G water change sometime this week. I also need to siphon out some of the cyano that is still there. I am hoping it won't come back... Then I will add a little more sand to some areas that are low from the siphoning.

This weekend I am hoping to get the new 10G ATO reservoir set up and the old one removed. This will allow room for the Calcium Reactor to be placed. I will also be regenerating more DI resin on Sunday so I can replace the resin in my RODI again. High CO2 in the water is not fun for DI resin usage...

Maybe this weekend I can post some pictures in my build threads!
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Re: tank maintenance chat

Post by seaponygirl on Mon Sep 30, 2013 11:34 am

Here's my take on algae. As you know at one time, my fish had to use machetes to get around the tank. My main culprits was overfeeding (by hubby). When I cut down on this it really cut the amount of algae I had. I tilted my LED lights so they were angled more towards the back glass, that kept the front cleaner. I also added a lawnmower blenny and a hippo tang and a coral beauty. The three of them keep the hair algae clear. In fact I have a 20 gallon that I farm hair algae in and move those bits of coral back and forth to feed the algae eaters. Switching to RODI also made an almost instant decrease also.
This week I noticed something new, that Blennielover mentioned. Flow. In messing with my 45 my powerheads (?) were moved so they blew more on the front glass. Now I have a heart shape with no algae on the glass, with some of the other algae around it. Really cool looking. But it seems I need to amp up the flow at least on the front. Anyone else noticed that phenomen?
Always something new.

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Re: tank maintenance chat

Post by HSCmember on Sun Oct 06, 2013 2:23 pm

The science center tank we have to clean the glass every day. We are running the new halides I believe 5 hours, and the corals seem to be doing pretty well. As usual there is another softball size rose anemone taking hold. Anyone interested in one, please think of us first! I try to clean the powerheads once a month in vinegar, but of course there wasn't any so I bought some and hid it for next week.
We are playing with the skimmer a lot right now- discovered the water should only be in the black box part of the skimmer (I apologize for the technical terms :roll) and we are producing more brown crud. I still haven't cleaned that either, but I managed to slice my index finger on a reflector very nicely yesterday so my water change wasn't as good as I would have liked.
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Re: tank maintenance chat

Post by blennieluvr on Mon Mar 10, 2014 1:20 pm

I'm going back to this thread.  I'm hoping if I type my goals for this week here, I will actually make time to get to them. 

On top of my normal maintenance this week, I hope to:
1)  get my newish RODI hooked up
2)  peroxide dip two rocks in my 75g that are growing red turf algae(or just replace them with different rock...I have some cycling in a bucket that would be for this)
 3)  program my fuge light to be on a reverse cycle from my display lights rather than on 24/7. 
4)  I also need to reprogram my controllers to reflect daylight savings time.  There is no need for lights on until 11:00 at night!  LOL
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