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Dearth
03-16-2017, 08:42 PM
This has been talked about in the past on the site but let's see what you have to say. I all but gave up on checking my water parameters about 16 months ago because every test kit I had never agreed on any test I did I had 4 test kits (Hagen, API, Seachem and salifert) not one ever agreed with the other and it was a guessing game on what the water was doing.

So I gave up testing and watched my corals and fish for clues and made changes accordingly. Yes I know it's not scientific and it's not acceptable per se with many people in the hobby but I haven't killed anything yet since I stopped testing. On my last set of days off I had a friend come over and do some water tests and aside from my water being a bit low in calcium(which I expected) my water was well within all the acceptable water parameters. So I must be doing something right.

So with that being said how often do you check your water or do you rely on your tank to tell you?

mseepman
03-16-2017, 09:39 PM
After completely screwing up my tank through an ALK crash, I now check pretty darn regularly. 90% loss of coral and Hair algae which I've never had before.

Potatohead
03-16-2017, 10:50 PM
I test alk almost every day, everything else 1 - 2 times per week, except magnesium maybe 2 - 3 times a month. I usually test my newly mixed water also.

maron6977
03-17-2017, 12:19 AM
Usually test alk 1-2 times a week , everything else 1-2 times a month.
I use salifert test kits , except for PO4 - Hanna

DKoKoMan
03-17-2017, 01:32 AM
I will test ALK twice a week as well and Calcium once or twice a week. MAG I test usually once a month or every two months.

Sharkbait-huhaha
03-17-2017, 02:41 AM
Nada, don't check for squat. Only time I check something is when I do salinity check.

I believe in keeping good husbandry goes a long way - also I don't have any really high demanding corals.

Clean skimmer and swap out filter socks every 3-4 days
10% water change weekly
30% water change every 6th week
Zeovit additives routinely

I too keep an eye on the fish and corals. If all looks fat, happy and plump. I let it be.

gregzz4
03-17-2017, 04:48 AM
I don't get enough time to stare at my tank on a regular basis. Because of that I can't see when something is happening, so I rely on testing.
I test the Big 3 weekly and adjust my doser accordingly.
I perform WCs every other week and adjust the new water before adding it, then adjust the timers for a week to compensate for the salt I buy.
I'm being cheap with salt, so this is my life ...

It's either this or get out of the hobby

jason604
03-17-2017, 09:23 AM
Yep I stopped checking my parameters for about almost a year now. Before I use to check all the time and seems like each time I do I end up adjusting my additives and cause more rtn,stn etc. ever since I cared for my tank less my tank has been thriving. I'm pretty lazy I only do the bare minimum like water changes every 2 weeks or so and mix additives for my dosed every 2 months. Dirty tank? Then get a sea hare and thank yourself later. I drilled a hole through my skimmer cup and attached a tube to it direct the nasty stuff to a 2L pop bottle so now I don't even need to dump it out for over a month. Enjoy your tank, not be a slave to it.

Ryanerickson
03-17-2017, 05:17 PM
For the people that can't be bothered testing your tank why even have one? Your all one alk swing away from a full wipe out. This thread makes me laugh people bragging about there lazines or inability to figure out a 3 step test kit. That's all for now

Myka
03-17-2017, 05:40 PM
[You're] all one alk swing away from a full wipe out.

My thoughts exactly. :(

Reeferluke
03-17-2017, 05:44 PM
For the people that can't be bothered testing your tank why even have one? Your all one alk swing away from a full wipe out. This thread makes me laugh people bragging about there lazines or inability to figure out a 3 step test kit. That's all for now

Absolutely

jason604
03-17-2017, 07:27 PM
To each their own I guess. Some ppl like to slave over their tank and some like to actually spend that time to look and enjoy their tank if they have a busy schedule. I like to just stare the at front of my tank n enjoys it's beauty and not in the back room staring at changing colors of my test vials.

Animal-Chin
03-17-2017, 07:34 PM
Alk constantly, Cal once a week, Nitrate and Phosphate couple times a week maybe?

I'm biopellet carbon dosing so if my alk swings I get burnt tips or acro loss real quick. Like in January (I think) we got a snow storm and my power kept going out for like 1 second. Everytime it did my controller would re set and my dosers would come back on. My alk went from 7 where I keep it to almost 10 while I was at work. Only way I knew this is because of monitoring. Got home, turned down my dosing schedule to drop the alk back to where it should be for my system.

I know its a pain but if you're going sps and even LPS I couldn't imagine not monitoring parameters unless you only had like 2 fish in a 125 gallon tank and not a lot of stony corals...

Animal-Chin
03-17-2017, 07:37 PM
To each their own I guess. Some ppl like to slave over their tank and some like to actually spend that time to look and enjoy their tank if they have a busy schedule. I like to just stare the at front of my tank n enjoys it's beauty and not in the back room staring at changing colors of my test vials.

I do all my testing from the couch in front of my tank. Just take a cup of water out and do them all there. But ya, I enjoy the activity of my tank more than just looking at it. I see ever coral as a challenge, I see the entire system as a challenge, how to get my echo system to thrive in a totally un natural environment.

That and I've had crazy things happen by not testing. Once I over dosed alk or cal, cant remember which and I had crazy calcification in the tank. Seized every pump and my glass was white and no longer transparent. Was nuts! I've had enough weird mistakes happen to know testing is important for me...

acepumping
03-17-2017, 08:14 PM
To each their own I guess. Some ppl like to slave over their tank and some like to actually spend that time to look and enjoy their tank if they have a busy schedule. I like to just stare the at front of my tank n enjoys it's beauty and not in the back room staring at changing colors of my test vials.

Really? Testing takes a lousy 10 minutes once a week for your hard earned money to stay alive! Plus!! I enjoy testing and starring at the tank at the same time..

But then again, it's better to have a crash and look for cheap coral again vs. (Me) testing once a week to save my expensive pieces..
SMH

Sharkbait-huhaha
03-17-2017, 08:47 PM
For the people that can't be bothered testing your tank why even have one? Your all one alk swing away from a full wipe out. This thread makes me laugh people bragging about there lazines or inability to figure out a 3 step test kit. That's all for now

Whoa Ryan, woke up on the wrong side of the bed? You're entitled to your own opinion but what differs from your tank to mine is that you keep exotic and expensive corals, and for that reason I believe it's an investment that I would too, check my parameters often.

When I got into this hobby, I was fascinated on the look and peace it brings me after 12-14 hour work shift. Coming home to do extra work on the tank is on the less side of my worries. I have had my tank up for over 6 months after moving into my new house. And before that, it was in an establish tank for 2 years.

If I ever do acquire half of the nice corals you got, then maybe you can give me pointers of dosing and checking parameter. :wink:

Bblinks
03-17-2017, 08:51 PM
Really? Testing takes a lousy 10 minutes once a week for your hard earned money to stay alive! Plus!! I enjoy testing and starring at the tank at the same time..

But then again, it's better to have a crash and look for cheap coral again vs. (Me) testing once a week to save my expensive pieces..
SMH

I am lazy too and I don't ever test.....however, my wife does :redface: lol suckers.

I think you hit the nail on the head when you define "cheap" corals but I think the proper term is EASY. If you had a tank of crappy softies (I don't like them so they are crappy to me, others might think my sps's are crappy, I don't really care. lol) or even some nice LPS one can argue for lack of testing. Most of them are pretty tough and will not die even if you tried. On the other hand, if you got a tank full of 4-5 hundo cadillac frags then you best be checking your parameters and check them often. Also, if you check your parameter once a month and decided that $hit has hit the fan that you need to make drastic adjustments, please don't! You need to go slow and make minor changes or else you might experience more issues than you set out to correct.

This is why I don't agree with some of the replies here, put your money where your mouth is. You don't do certain thing for your tank then tell the newbies that could be reading your advice why you don't and most importantly POST A PICTURE OF YOUR TANK so they will know what to expect if they neglect certain things.

Bblinks
03-17-2017, 09:02 PM
Whoa Ryan, woke up on the wrong side of the bed? You're entitled to your own opinion but what differs from your tank to mine is that you keep exotic and expensive corals, and for that reason I believe it's an investment that I would too, check my parameters often.

When I got into this hobby, I was fascinated on the look and peace it brings me after 12-14 hour work shift. Coming home to do extra work on the tank is on the less side of my worries. I have had my tank up for over 6 months after moving into my new house. And before that, it was in an establish tank for 2 years.

If I ever do acquire half of the nice corals you got, then maybe you can give me pointers of dosing and checking parameter. :wink:

Ryan is very passionate about keeping good husbandry just like most of us on here. I am sure it's not directed at anyone. As my previous post states every tank is different, people needs to be more accountable when they give advice. Experience reefers can differentiate between "good" and "bad" advice but to a newbie, someones "bad" advice might end their reefing hobby. Let's provide the whole story of your tank and why you offer your opinions on certain matters which might just alleviate a whole lot of confusion and the possibilities of costly mistakes.

Sharkbait-huhaha
03-17-2017, 09:32 PM
Ryan is very passionate about keeping good husbandry just like most of us on here. I am sure it's not directed at anyone. As my previous post states every tank is different, people needs to be more accountable when they give advice. Experience reefers can differentiate between "good" and "bad" advice but to a newbie, someones "bad" advice might end their reefing hobby. Let's provide the whole story of your tank and why you offer your opinions on certain matters which might just alleviate a whole lot of confusion and the possibilities of costly mistakes.

Oh absolutely, I hope no reefer would read my post without considering how different my tank could be compared to theirs. I was simply stating what I do for my tank. Jeez, I give terrible advice, so I hope no one would take my words literal. :lol:

In my tank, It's 90g mixed reef with the majority of it being LPS. I consider, personally, my corals to be inexpensive or very common. If my tank (knock on wood) ever crash, and I lost my corals, It would not be the end of the world. It would be easy to achieve the same inexpensive corals off the reefing community.

In the future, if I do plan to keep SPS, I would expect crazy swings of the "major 3" once I start dosing and moving up on the ladder, that's when I would decide to check parameters :)

Bblinks
03-17-2017, 09:49 PM
Oh absolutely, I hope no reefer would read my post without considering how different my tank could be compared to theirs. I was simply stating what I do for my tank. Jeez, I give terrible advice, so I hope no one would take my words literal. :lol:

In my tank, It's 90g mixed reef with the majority of it being LPS. I consider, personally, my corals to be inexpensive or very common. If my tank (knock on wood) ever crash, and I lost my corals, It would not be the end of the world. It would be easy to achieve the same inexpensive corals off the reefing community.

In the future, if I do plan to keep SPS, I would expect crazy swings of the "major 3" once I start dosing and moving up on the ladder, that's when I would decide to check parameters :)


I got a biocube with lps and nems, I don't test nothing on it. Just sit back and enjoy.

Sps on the other hand is a total different story. If you even look at it wrong it will peel. lol If you are gluten for punishment and like pain and suffering then please join me on this sps journey of angrish. :biggrin:

Sharkbait-huhaha
03-17-2017, 09:53 PM
:lol::lol:

acepumping
03-17-2017, 11:16 PM
I am lazy too and I don't ever test.....however, my wife does :redface: lol suckers.

I think you hit the nail on the head when you define "cheap" corals but I think the proper term is EASY. If you had a tank of crappy softies (I don't like them so they are crappy to me, others might think my sps's are crappy, I don't really care. lol) or even some nice LPS one can argue for lack of testing. Most of them are pretty tough and will not die even if you tried. On the other hand, if you got a tank full of 4-5 hundo cadillac frags then you best be checking your parameters and check them often. Also, if you check your parameter once a month and decided that $hit has hit the fan that you need to make drastic adjustments, please don't! You need to go slow and make minor changes or else you might experience more issues than you set out to correct.

This is why I don't agree with some of the replies here, put your money where your mouth is. You don't do certain thing for your tank then tell the newbies that could be reading your advice why you don't and most importantly POST A PICTURE OF YOUR TANK so they will know what to expect if they neglect certain things.

Agreed fully rich, don't do what I did and change it to the max when all was looking amazing.. Lost alot of nice high end Acros.. but then again, busy lifestyle and no patience kicked in.. you guys all listened while I was venting. I was so close to shutting down again

acepumping
03-17-2017, 11:19 PM
Can we change this into tank pic thread now 😂😂

Bblinks
03-17-2017, 11:28 PM
My tank is a mess, you don't want to see it.

hunggi74
03-18-2017, 12:02 AM
Repost

hunggi74
03-18-2017, 12:04 AM
My tank is a mess, you don't want to see it.

PFFT X1000000000000000000

tang daddy
03-18-2017, 12:25 AM
For the people that can't be bothered testing your tank why even have one? Your all one alk swing away from a full wipe out. This thread makes me laugh people bragging about there lazines or inability to figure out a 3 step test kit. That's all for now

Lol, maybe they don't have corals that are worth much...

Let's just say you have invested about 8k in corals I don't think you would risk not testing and letting expensive pieces melt away....

Even with testing I've ran into problems with alk spiking and losing sensitive sps like red dragon overnight.

Alk is the most important thing to test. I test that weekly. Calcium I also test weekly, mg can be tested less as it doesn't deplete fast.

Galizio
03-18-2017, 12:32 AM
I think testing is essential as part of the hobby, same like water changes ... I'm surprise when people say they don't test the water, or same with people that say never perform water changes. I'm referring most to hobbyist with a reef tank as probably a FOWLR is easier to maintain IMO...
Can you believe when they say my corals are doing good? Yes, the ones alive, how many did you kill tho?
As hobbyist you have to consider the water testing as part of the routine, even if you do a test a day , don't need to do all 5-6 or 7 or whatever , how long does it takes? Maybe 5 minutes?
I say water testing is essential, if you have a tank is a must.



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

jason604
03-18-2017, 12:45 AM
My tank is about 80% sps and I do have sensitive corals such as red dragon. But then again I do run dosers and atos and frequent water changes so I know my system doesn't change much. Therefore I don't do tests unless I see my corals acting funny which it's been too long to remember. I have had many crashes since I started this hobby but it was mainly due to me playing around with my tank too much. So if my tank is thriving then why change what I'm doing if it ain't broken? Each person maintains their system differently. But Im also not saying that others should do exactly as I'm doing. What works for me might not work for you and what works for you might not work for me. Oh and yea I might have to blame sharkbait for my bad habits lol jk.

Sharkbait-huhaha
03-18-2017, 01:25 AM
I think testing is essential as part of the hobby, same like water changes ... I'm surprise when people say they don't test the water, or same with people that say never perform water changes. I'm referring most to hobbyist with a reef tank as probably a FOWLR is easier to maintain IMO...
Can you believe when they say my corals are doing good? Yes, the ones alive, how many did you kill tho?
As hobbyist you have to consider the water testing as part of the routine, even if you do a test a day , don't need to do all 5-6 or 7 or whatever , how long does it takes? Maybe 5 minutes?
I say water testing is essential, if you have a tank is a must.



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


Oh com'n Galizio, I have not had one coral die on me, because I didn't check my parameters lol, But I did have corals die on me from stinging one another, BJD, or having a not so reef safe fish.

Like many other said in this thread, it really depends on what you keep in your tank, and how much you're willing to invest in it.

So I continue... day 201... parameters.. still no clue. :lol:

As long as my little nieces and nephews can come over each time, and look in awe, I am a happy camper.

For those curious whats lurking in my tank...

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c316/P3T3RPH4M/IMG_6627_zpstllchij9.jpg

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c316/P3T3RPH4M/IMG_6632_zpsbho4iayb.jpg

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c316/P3T3RPH4M/FullSizeRender_zpsfnyqjslw.jpg

It might not be as grand as some of the amazing tanks I have seen in this CanReef community, but its my piece of the pie, They way I like it :biggrin:

Galizio
03-18-2017, 01:28 AM
Oh com'n Galizio, I have not had one coral die on me, because I didn't check my parameters lol, But I did have corals die on me from stinging one another, BJD, or having a not so reef safe fish.



Like many other said in this thread, it really depends on what you keep in your tank, and how much you're willing to invest in it.



So I continue... day 201... parameters.. still no clue. :lol:



As long as my little nieces and nephews can come over each time, and look in awe, I am a happy camper.



For those curious whats lurking in my tank...



http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c316/P3T3RPH4M/IMG_6627_zpstllchij9.jpg



http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c316/P3T3RPH4M/IMG_6632_zpsbho4iayb.jpg



http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c316/P3T3RPH4M/FullSizeRender_zpsfnyqjslw.jpg



It might not be as grand as some of the amazing tanks I have seen in this CanReef community, but its my piece of the pie, They way I like it :biggrin:



Looks good bud.. was not referring on you, was more a general thing...
Yes lots depends on the corals in your tank too... don't take it personally lol


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Sharkbait-huhaha
03-18-2017, 01:29 AM
lol, none taken, bud!

Dearth
03-18-2017, 03:59 AM
Well since I started this conversation and the resulting chaos falls on my shoulders I guess I should explain my tank first off I live alone secondly this is a long winded story

95 gallon wave tank
Made the decision to make my tank a softie tank because I know I don't have the equipment or space for said equipment.
Have 14 fish all under 4 inches several snails, crab, shrimp and 8 sea cucumbers ATM
My tank is as simple as it comes skimmer one end return pump on the other no other equipment at all
Manually dose vinegar once per day when I remember to

I don't have the standard 9-5 job and I work shift work (4 days on 4 off 12 hrs per shift 2 days 2 nights rinse repeat)so a maintenance schedule is spotty at best for me and there are times I am too physically exhausted to do anything but I feed my fish once per day

So down to testing my water just before my heart attack I was testing every week with 2 different test kits (API and Salifert) for all the usual stuff and could not trust either test so usually went down the middle of the road. Then my heart attack happened after that it was all I could do for 2 months after just to fill my top up water. After I recovered enough to go back to work I had other medical issues that took precedence over my tank all I did was feed my fish and top up my ATO. Enter 4 and a half months after my heart attack I did my first water change in 5 months I had red cyano everywhere and sick coral I was on vacation so I did 4 water changes in 9 days started cleaning up the cyano and by July my tank was healthy again. I did lose a few coral as would be expected but no fish, shrimp, snails or crab and had 3 sea cucumber at the time.

In all this time never did a water test and by the time I realized I hadn't done one in almost 7 months and as I got busy again with work and dealing with my medical issues I just kept up with my water change monthly and vinegar dosing and before you know it was a new year and if you care to look on 2017 full tank shots in pictures you will see what my tank looked like in January 2016 to January 2017 and not one water test.

You need not agree with my methods or maintenance schedule but I think I have done well for myself and it works for me and I have a happy thriving tank to boot. It may bite me in the asss one day and I will deal with it then but for now I have a healthy happy thriving tank which I will continue to enjoy

DKoKoMan
03-18-2017, 04:44 AM
Oh com'n Galizio, I have not had one coral die on me, because I didn't check my parameters lol, But I did have corals die on me from stinging one another, BJD, or having a not so reef safe fish.

Like many other said in this thread, it really depends on what you keep in your tank, and how much you're willing to invest in it.

So I continue... day 201... parameters.. still no clue. :lol:

As long as my little nieces and nephews can come over each time, and look in awe, I am a happy camper.

For those curious whats lurking in my tank...

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c316/P3T3RPH4M/IMG_6627_zpstllchij9.jpg

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c316/P3T3RPH4M/IMG_6632_zpsbho4iayb.jpg

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c316/P3T3RPH4M/FullSizeRender_zpsfnyqjslw.jpg

It might not be as grand as some of the amazing tanks I have seen in this CanReef community, but its my piece of the pie, They way I like it :biggrin:

Just out of curiosity, how is your Saddle Valentini Puffer with your Torch & Hammers? I love these little buggers but I am worried they will nip everything to death :neutral:

tang daddy
03-18-2017, 05:20 AM
Well since I started this conversation and the resulting chaos falls on my shoulders I guess I should explain my tank first off I live alone secondly this is a long winded story

95 gallon wave tank
Made the decision to make my tank a softie tank because I know I don't have the equipment or space for said equipment.
Have 14 fish all under 4 inches several snails, crab, shrimp and 8 sea cucumbers ATM
My tank is as simple as it comes skimmer one end return pump on the other no other equipment at all
Manually dose vinegar once per day when I remember to

I don't have the standard 9-5 job and I work shift work (4 days on 4 off 12 hrs per shift 2 days 2 nights rinse repeat)so a maintenance schedule is spotty at best for me and there are times I am too physically exhausted to do anything but I feed my fish once per day

So down to testing my water just before my heart attack I was testing every week with 2 different test kits (API and Salifert) for all the usual stuff and could not trust either test so usually went down the middle of the road. Then my heart attack happened after that it was all I could do for 2 months after just to fill my top up water. After I recovered enough to go back to work I had other medical issues that took precedence over my tank all I did was feed my fish and top up my ATO. Enter 4 and a half months after my heart attack I did my first water change in 5 months I had red cyano everywhere and sick coral I was on vacation so I did 4 water changes in 9 days started cleaning up the cyano and by July my tank was healthy again. I did lose a few coral as would be expected but no fish, shrimp, snails or crab and had 3 sea cucumber at the time.

In all this time never did a water test and by the time I realized I hadn't done one in almost 7 months and as I got busy again with work and dealing with my medical issues I just kept up with my water change monthly and vinegar dosing and before you know it was a new year and if you care to look on 2017 full tank shots in pictures you will see what my tank looked like in January 2016 to January 2017 and not one water test.

You need not agree with my methods or maintenance schedule but I think I have done well for myself and it works for me and I have a happy thriving tank to boot. It may bite me in the asss one day and I will deal with it then but for now I have a healthy happy thriving tank which I will continue to enjoy

I am happy you have recovered from the illness and same with your tank dearth. I think Rich said it best which was if you are keeping a system with softies and small amount of Lps then testing is not that important, but if you keep a tank with lots of sps then stuff like alk can deplete fast, most of my friends keep sps dominated tanks and basically alk drops at 1-2 points a day if they haven't dosed or ran out of alk. This can be detrimental to a system that depends on ca and alk.

Why did you have 8 sea cucumbers in your tank?

I think we've all been on the same boat with feeding once a day and that's it, I had family members to take care of and my son born a few years ago I only fed once a week and watched my tank literally melt down, sold some of the remaining corals and then shut down. I've been in the hobby for over 14 years and can say I know what it feels to be a lazy reefer, sometimes life can be hard and a hobby is the last thing on your mind, seen lots of good friends get out because of different things happening.

In the end we all want what's best for our reefs and some go through more time than others to take care of their inhabitants.

We all know the big 3 to test (for the people that do)
For me I like salifert as it is easy to use...
I use salifert for alk, ca, mg and no3
Hanna for alk and po4

The salifert for alk only gives you a reading of .05 but the Hanna will give you point to point so I usually do Hanna first for alk then recheck with salifert.
As I stayed in my previous post my alk jumped all over before I had the doser it was as low as 5.5 and as high as 11. Since the addition of the doser it's been stable at 8 to 8.5. My tank will consume less Ca and Alk when phosphates are higher at .24 but when phosphates are at .05 it consumes a lot more hence the swings of .05 to .24, big difference I know.

Looking at your tank can tell you a lot like when you have cyano it's mostly caused by elevated po4 and no3 but also when there is an imbalance in either one like too much po4 and no no3 or vice versa.

I think new reefers usually start with easier to keep softies like mushrooms and GSP and easier montis that are a lot more forgiving. With that said the start up cost for a new reefer can be a lot so test kits are not that important.

I have read people that have been in the hobby for over 25 years and don't do water changes and still have fully packed tanks but they supplement important additives into the tanks i.e. Strontium, potassium and also the big 3.

If you have a balanced tank with corals growing it will consume the big 3 and so one must adjust accordingly. The changes in consumption can be slow but eventually it will consume more and more. My sps are still small but never the less growing day by day and I keep adding more ca and alk bit by bit to keep levels where they need to be.

I have friends that keep rock flowers Zoas and flower pots they do water changes once a month and their tank thrives with heavy feedings.

I have gone without doing water changes for 4 months at a time in the past without any problems either. But now at this time I've spent too much on corals and even feel guilty missing my 5g water changes every 3-4 days.

Dearth
03-18-2017, 05:34 AM
I started off with 2 cucumbers 3 yrs ago now they ebb and flow with the food considering I feed one frozen cube of brine shrimp per day I find it amazing that they procreate as they do. I had as few as one and as high as my current total but usually average 4 sea cucumbers

Sharkbait-huhaha
03-18-2017, 04:49 PM
Just out of curiosity, how is your Saddle Valentini Puffer with your Torch & Hammers? I love these little buggers but I am worried they will nip everything to death :neutral:

I'm one of the fortunate ones. He's my favourite fish as well, such a funny personality. I've had him for 2 years now. He does not nip on any corals. But I do not take a chance, and feed the tank 2-3 times a day. Keep him fed so he doesn't go looking for something to nip at!

mseepman
03-18-2017, 05:23 PM
So as I indicated early in this thread my tank is great evidence on the importance of regular testing. I have redundancy for just about everything, including a whole home generator just for the tank and peripherals, but due to a power outage my doser switched off for some reason and my tank was gobbling a lot of ALK every day. My testing regime was once a month and so I didn't notice the ALK drop until it had gone down to 4. As Rich suggested I tried to fix it maybe a little too fast and with the coral deaths coming on strong, suddenly I was also fighting other issues caused by the deaths. Hair algae showed up (something i'd never had a speck of in 4 years). I was so focussed on the ALK issue that I failed to properly adjust the other two and further chaos ensued. I've lost most of my corals, some of which I couldn't even fit between my eurobrace without breaking them apart and my tank is 3' wide. Testing once or twice a week would have spared me a pretty crappy year in reefing and you can bet I do it now (at least alk).

Myka
03-18-2017, 06:12 PM
I understand the lack of time, or occasional "just don't feel like it". I fall victim to this too. I service/maintain aquariums full-time for a living. Sometimes when I clean and test tanks all day I don't want to clean and test my own. Recently, I managed to turn off my doser, and at the same time I slacked off on testing for a month. Things were starting to look "off" in the tank - a little less PE than usual, colors a tad faded, nothing singularly significant, but all together I knew something was wrong and whatever it was the damage was already done. That's what people don't get about "oh I just look at my corals, and they tell me if something is off" - the damage is already done. So I do a full panel test - alkalinity was 5.85 dKH, and I normally keep it around 7.2 dKH. So it had fallen significantly. Keep in mind my tank is about 95% SPS. At first, I assumed consumption has gone up, but I would do an "extra" manual dose again and again, and I wasn't getting anywhere. Finally I noticed, and switched the doser back on, and life is good. I very slowly got alkalinity to 7.0 and left it there - change it too much and MORE damage will be done. That was 3 weeks ago, and the tank appeared mostly unaffected. Remember however, the damage was already done. So now three weeks later, I'm seeing the results of my mistake (yep, that's how long it takes 2-4 weeks). I now have some very thin skinned Acros, and some browned out ones. Most are so far unaffected or only mildly affected, some look terrible. The moral of the story?? If I would have taken 90 seconds a week away from "enjoying the tank" and performing the most important parameter check on the tank - the alkalinity - I would have saved what is probably going to be several months of rehabilitation to get the Acros back to where they were in early February. I am so mad at myself.

I'm going to go do a water change and test the tank right now... :lol:

I have not had one coral die on me, because I didn't check my parameters lol, But I did have corals die on me from stinging one another, BJD,

IME, the leading cause of Brown Jelly Diesase is low alkalinity. So IMO yes, you've experienced coral death from not testing and dosing. The trouble is that you, like many others, don't recognize the direct results of your actions (or inaction), and pass on this misinformation to other people. Ignorance is always bliss. :)

Sharkbait-huhaha
03-18-2017, 07:13 PM
IME, the leading cause of Brown Jelly Diesase is low alkalinity. So IMO yes, you've experienced coral death from not testing and dosing. The trouble is that you, like many others, don't recognize the direct results of your actions (or inaction), and pass on this misinformation to other people. Ignorance is always bliss. :)

Again, your theory is incorrect from the vague information I have given you. I received BJD in my nano tank because I acquire a coral from another reefer that had an outbreak of it. The only way I found out of it was because that certain reefer contacted me a few days later to warn me about her outbreak. Being newbie at the time I did not know what BJD was and how it would effect my tank. Even if I check my parameters, it would show no I'll sign that BJD had already entered my tank.

This was a discussion on WHO checks what and why or why not. Not a tutorial or pin point information on WHY you should check your parameters or not. I'm simply stating why I do what I do and how it has worked for me.

Myka
03-18-2017, 08:16 PM
Ok, I can't resist. I found this pic awhile back. i think Ryan Erickson will particularly enjoy it.

https://heatherstinnett.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/head-in-the-sand-lion-blog.jpg

F.H
03-18-2017, 09:40 PM
I've tried to be lazy and not test for a while (we all have) but now the one thing that forces me to do it is the fact that newly mixed saltwater can have varying parameters from your tank. In essence, you can do damage to your tank with a water change because the batch of newly mixed saltwater can have low alk or very high alk, which can cause a sudden swing in your tank. It wasn't until much later into the hobby that I realized this. I've heard stories of people getting a tank crash due to something assumably good like a water change, and therefore if I try to stay on schedule of a water change every 2 weeks, then I'm forced to check my parameters.

I've even noticed, that when I was using salinity salt, the alk would be different from a fresh mix (around 8.5) vs letting it sit overnight, where it would drop down to about 6.

I feel like keeping an eye on alk is the most important, even with lps. Sometimes when I'm being lazy I might skip a ca check, but alk is something I've told myself not to skip. Even mag I don't test as often because it depletes slower. Although lately I've noticed that if my mag drops too low then my lps, chalices especially, don't like it so I try to avoid letting it get that low.

The "looking at my tank" method works for me with phosphate checks, which I don't do as often, as I can tell (somewhat) depending on the colours and how often I have to clean the glass etc where it might be... so I can be slightly lazier with phosphate checks. Although I must note that if I had an sps only system, then I would probably keep a much closer eye on nutrient levels.

MitchM
03-18-2017, 09:44 PM
It's too bad that this forum doesn't allow for "likes" because there have been a number of good points brought up.
Healthy corals will give you a grace period of living in less than ideal conditions until their own health starts to decline and then they are susceptible to disease and infection.
Healthy corals can last for many months in poor conditions.

Flaunting "no water tests" is typically done by people new to the hobby and certainly does not help newcomers trying to have long term success.

Tests have shown that varying water parameters - salinity, temperature, lighting conditions will lead to having stronger corals, but the varying parameters must be present from the beginning while the coral is young and the person controlling the conditions must be aware what those varying conditions are.

Negligence is not a recipe for success.

.

Sharkbait-huhaha
03-18-2017, 10:52 PM
Ok, not going to lie. I had that "What if" pondering all yesterday and this morning. So after 202 days of not checking my Alk, I borrowed a friends to check it out.

This is what I got:
reading in ml 0.52, KH value in dKH 7.3
I did a 10% WC yesterday morning, and about 2 weeks off from a 30% WC.

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c316/P3T3RPH4M/IMG_6648_zpsmstfqwb5.jpg

And you guys are all right, it all took but 2 minutes to achieve this test.

Potatohead
03-18-2017, 11:34 PM
I think someone mentioned earlier, this is basically asking if you keep SPS ( mainly acros) or not. If you have a softie or even LPS tank you can likely get away with water changes and likely never having to dose, unless you have a bunch of coralline or something. With a bunch of SPS though you can quite literally lose everything by having your doser stop working and you discover it 24 hours (or even less) later.

tang daddy
03-19-2017, 12:25 AM
Ok, not going to lie. I had that "What if" pondering all yesterday and this morning. So after 202 days of not checking my Alk, I borrowed a friends to check it out.

This is what I got:
reading in ml 0.52, KH value in dKH 7.3
I did a 10% WC yesterday morning, and about 2 weeks off from a 30% WC.

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c316/P3T3RPH4M/IMG_6648_zpsmstfqwb5.jpg

And you guys are all right, it all took but 2 minutes to achieve this test.

Lol good for you buddy, now go and buy an alk tester and at bare minimum test ever week.
If you're using IO salt the alk is usually higher like 9-9.5 so this helps raise your alk abit in smaller WC.

With the salifert I can do test in under 30 seconds. And I usually try and test every Friday morning at 11am when the lights are out.

DKoKoMan
03-19-2017, 08:08 AM
Awesome to hear that you tested and everything is good'

Myka
03-19-2017, 02:46 PM
Ok, not going to lie. I had that "What if" pondering all yesterday and this morning. So after 202 days of not checking my Alk, I borrowed a friends to check it out.

This is what I got:
reading in ml 0.52, KH value in dKH 7.3
I did a 10% WC yesterday morning, and about 2 weeks off from a 30% WC.

And you guys are all right, it all took but 2 minutes to achieve this test.

Awesome!

Honestly though, with your tank full of LPS you're walking a fine line at 7.3 dKH. That's approaching the danger zone IME.

As mentioned, softie and LPS tanks can often be maintained through waterchanges provided you're using a salt mix with elevated parameters such as Reef Crystals. If you're using IO you will usually end up being quite low in Ca since alk is elevated, but Ca is not. This is why choosing a salt mix can be quite important!

For your tank Shark bait, you can probably maintain your tank simply by adding a small dose of alk between waterchanges and then (possibly) adding some calcium to the freshly mixed saltwater to help boost Ca (if it is indeed low).

As mentioned, coralline algae can suck up a significant amount of Ca and alk to the point where it needs to be replenished to keep the corals happy. The corals aren't using up much themselves, but they will suffer when the coralline sucks it all out and they're left with peanuts!

mike31154
03-20-2017, 04:33 AM
I don't test much. Mostly LPS in my tank, only SPS are monti caps in green & tan. They grow like the dickens (the montis) so I know there's calcium. I don't dose anything either, use standard IO salt. Fish are healthy, my Maroon clownfish pair have been spawning forever, I have some hair algae, not that concerned, it filters the water... I get the refractometer out to check salinity when I do water changes, that's about it these days. When I did test alk regularly, it was chronically low, according to the test kit. My theory is, if there's even a trace of calcium in the water, the coral will find it & use it. It's a hobby to me, not a fanatic, I'm not doing the fish, coral, rock, clean up crew, inverts any favours by keeping them if a 4 foot enclosure.

Bblinks
03-20-2017, 06:56 PM
Ok, not going to lie. I had that "What if" pondering all yesterday and this morning. So after 202 days of not checking my Alk, I borrowed a friends to check it out.

This is what I got:
reading in ml 0.52, KH value in dKH 7.3
I did a 10% WC yesterday morning, and about 2 weeks off from a 30% WC.

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c316/P3T3RPH4M/IMG_6648_zpsmstfqwb5.jpg

And you guys are all right, it all took but 2 minutes to achieve this test.

Do you moisturize? Your hand looks very soft and manicured....just saying...:lol:

Animal-Chin
03-20-2017, 07:46 PM
Awesome!

Honestly though, with your tank full of LPS you're walking a fine line at 7.3 dKH. That's approaching the danger zone IME.

!


What kind of danger zone? I run mine in the low 7's all the time as I'm carbon dosing and my sps tips burn at about 8.

Sharkbait-huhaha
03-20-2017, 07:59 PM
Do you moisturize? Your hand looks very soft and manicured....just saying...:lol:

Lmao I don't know what to say to that.. :lol:

Animal-Chin
03-20-2017, 08:09 PM
Its a simple yes or no answer, moisterize or not? Lol

Sharkbait-huhaha
03-20-2017, 08:13 PM
I actually work in construction. I use O'Keeffe's Working Hands Hand Cream after a work day. So, yes. :lol:

Bblinks
03-20-2017, 08:36 PM
I actually work in construction. I use O'Keeffe's Working Hands Hand Cream after a work day. So, yes. :lol:

LMFAO!!! Thanks for the lunch hour comedy break. :mrgreen:

jason604
03-23-2017, 07:11 AM
Alright so after about a year of not testing my water I decided to also just do one for the hell of it. And certainly not to any suprise, my parameters are normal. Alk 7 and cal 400

http://i1292.photobucket.com/albums/b578/kosin604/0817FE69-B4FC-4F90-9F52-65DDD88C17A6_zps42xpqggx.jpg (http://s1292.photobucket.com/user/kosin604/media/0817FE69-B4FC-4F90-9F52-65DDD88C17A6_zps42xpqggx.jpg.html)

Bblinks
03-23-2017, 05:47 PM
Alright so after about a year of not testing my water I decided to also just do one for the hell of it. And certainly not to any suprise, my parameters are normal. Alk 7 and cal 400

http://i1292.photobucket.com/albums/b578/kosin604/0817FE69-B4FC-4F90-9F52-65DDD88C17A6_zps42xpqggx.jpg (http://s1292.photobucket.com/user/kosin604/media/0817FE69-B4FC-4F90-9F52-65DDD88C17A6_zps42xpqggx.jpg.html)

The guilt sets in. Lol good to see everything is on point. Keep the cruise control going, don't fix it if it ain't broke.:biggrin:

DKoKoMan
03-23-2017, 05:55 PM
Ha ha, cruise control! I wish I wasn't on and off the gas so much.

jason604
03-23-2017, 06:20 PM
The guilt sets in. Lol good to see everything is on point. Keep the cruise control going, don't fix it if it ain't broke.:biggrin:

Haha thx. Yes cruise control is awesome lol. I decided to put a bit more love into my tank. Starting to scrap the back glass slowly as it is fully encrusted with coraline algae combine with 3 water changes this week so the scrapped coraline doesn't cause any damage to my water or if it does at all. It's actually really really hard for me to clean my back glass cuz of sps growth and rockwork blocking my path which was why I neglected doing it for so long now.

hunggi74
03-23-2017, 06:41 PM
Do you moisturize? Your hand looks very soft and manicured....just saying...:lol:

Don't mind him...he's so used to seeing rough and callused gym hands LOL

Bblinks
03-24-2017, 12:34 AM
Haha thx. Yes cruise control is awesome lol. I decided to put a bit more love into my tank. Starting to scrap the back glass slowly as it is fully encrusted with coraline algae combine with 3 water changes this week so the scrapped coraline doesn't cause any damage to my water or if it does at all. It's actually really really hard for me to clean my back glass cuz of sps growth and rockwork blocking my path which was why I neglected doing it for so long now.

I don't ever clean my back glass, that's why I have the black background so you can't see it. I made a huge mistake with the ocean blue background for the 210. It was awesome for about whole 3 days....lol

Don't mind him...he's so used to seeing rough and callused gym hands LOL

I was merely stating a fact.....you didn't have to get personal...:mrgreen:

jason604
03-24-2017, 03:34 AM
I have black background as well but u can't even seee it no more cuz of all coraline algae