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Comrade6

New to corals, need help salvaging my tank

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Comrade6

I have a fluval evo 13.5gal, I had just gotten into corals when my LFS basically went out of business, and I lost my experts to ask questions. I had purchase corals from them and had them test the water beforehand, and everything looked good. The corals were doing well for a while, until I had to use tap water for my water changes when COVID-19 shut down my source of RODI water. It was a long battle but I did finally rid my tank of the algae problem that resulted from using tap water by purchasing copapods, the corals were basically strangled by algae. Recently, my light died so I had to purchase a new one, I purchased an AI prime 16. My hammer coral doesn't appear to be doing well recently, and I had assumed it was because it basically went without light for a few days while the AI prime was in the mail. This brings me to my questions, I am trying to get a new LFS to test my water and help me out but they are not very responsive and I do not want to lose the corals. What test kit should I order up so I can test the water myself? And what should I be looking for in the params? Also, none of the corals have opened up since I installed the AI prime, so I am unsure if lighting is NOT the problem, or if I have a bad lighting schedule set. I've attached pictures of my 3 corals and one of the whole tank. I want to be able to take care of this tank without external help, but I just need to know what I'm looking for and what params I should be aiming for. I also would appreciate knowing what corals I actually have, I don't remember what they told me when I bought them. I have ordered up a wavemaker as well, so flow will be better shortly, I am currently only using the stock pump.

 

PS, what is that thing growing out of the frag plug in the 3rd image below? That has been growing steadily since I got it, did I get a hitchhiking coral?

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seabass

:welcome: to Nano-Reef.com.

 

2 hours ago, Comrade6 said:

My hammer coral doesn't appear to be doing well recently, and I had assumed it was because it basically went without light for a few days while the AI prime was in the mail.

Most corals do just fine with no lights for 3 days.

 

2 hours ago, Comrade6 said:

What test kit should I order up so I can test the water myself?

Phosphate, nitrate, and alkalinity are the most important.  If you are dosing alkalinity, you should also be testing magnesium and calcium.  An ammonia kit is good to have on hand, but typically isn't used unless you are cycling new rocks, or have a death in your tank.  I recommend Salifert kits for all of these except phosphate (which I'd recommend a Hanna ULR Phosphate Checker).

 

2 hours ago, Comrade6 said:

And what should I be looking for in the params?

You want:

  • phosphate between 0.03 ppm and 0.05 ppm
  • Nitrate between 1 ppm and 10 ppm
  • alkalinity within 1 dKH of a freshly mixed batch of your saltwater

Generally I try to target the values of a freshly mixed batch of saltwater, so that water changes don't cause swings, but actually move parameters towards your target.  However, here are some general guidelines:

Reef-Parameters-02.jpg

 

2 hours ago, Comrade6 said:

Also, none of the corals have opened up since I installed the AI prime, so I am unsure if lighting is NOT the problem, or if I have a bad lighting schedule set.

It's possible that the intensity is a lot more than your old light.  You might even try an acclimation mode.

 

2 hours ago, Comrade6 said:

PS, what is that thing growing out of the frag plug in the 3rd image below? That has been growing steadily since I got it, did I get a hitchhiking coral?

Hmm... not sure.  Maybe a colt coral.

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Murphych

To be fair though the corals don't look like they are in that bad of a condition.

I would definitely out the light into acclimation mode that's not going to hurt. That's a beast if a light over the Evo so defo want to watch your not blasting it. 

 

As Mr Bass says Salifert kits are rock solid 👍🏼

 

Nice setup mate you'll be on the straight and narrow soon enough 

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tzink

To be clear--are you still using tap water? This could be the source of many of your problems.

Without the LFS, you'll likely need to pony up for a RO system under your sink.

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Comrade6
4 hours ago, tzink said:

To be clear--are you still using tap water? This could be the source of many of your problems.

Without the LFS, you'll likely need to pony up for a RO system under your sink.

I'm not, I did find a new store to buy RODI from.

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