Dosing potassium in my AWC?

Discussion in 'General Reef Discussion' started by RSnodgrass, Jun 30, 2019.

  1. RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass TCMAS President
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    Does anyone see any issues with me adding potassium to my auto water change salt mix?

    Langer recently suggested I check my potassium because of issues I was having in the tank and it was way low and I'm working on getting it back up and it's seen considerable improvement but I'm considering putting it in my AWC and I don't know if it will cause precipitation of any kind.
     
    #1 RSnodgrass, Jun 30, 2019
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2019
  2. Reefking

    Reefking Senior Member
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    Following...
     
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  3. Juskr

    Juskr Junior Member
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    What test did you use for potassium?
     
  4. ikserk

    ikserk Administrator
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    I would dose the tank up to the level you want, test the AWC bin and dose it to your desired level.

    How fast to bring it up, I don't know the correct answer with potassium
     
  5. OP
    RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass TCMAS President
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    I'm using the Salifert and mailing off a IPC.
    210195_salifert_potassium_reeftest-a.jpg

    Agreed, main issue is I'm needing to put a considerable amount of potassium in to bring it up and will likely be gone for over a week. I'd like to under dose at least some each morning in the AWC.

    I'll test the original water in a couple hours to verify the test to the bucket.

    I suppose I could always put it in the awc and test it before adding, after adding, and again a week later. Guess I'll do that if no one knows.
     
  6. jlanger

    jlanger "The North Remembers"
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    My first suggestion is to only dose while you are home. There are way too many stories in this hobby that begin with "Before going on vacation, I did..." that end up badly.

    I did find a "source" that recommends only increasing your potassium levels by 5-10ppm per day, so we'll start there.

    By dosing within those guidelines, it will take you some time to increase your levels back up to 400ppm. The first step would be to know what levels your newly mixed saltwater is reading for potassium levels. Did you change your salt mix? Does it have a higher potassium reading? With your AWC there'll be some increase to the potassium levels, but after a lot of math, I'm pretty sure that it's not significant.
    I would advise increasing the potassium as a separate and controlled dose with a dedicated pump separate from the AWC system; for now. You will have the ability to control the volume and strength of the potassium supplement much easier with a concentrated dose. And if anything was to go awry, you can adjust the dosing without affecting your AWC system.
    Once you've reached your targeted potassium level, then maybe you could consider adding the potassium supplement into the AWC regimen. I don't think that I would take that route myself, but I'm not saying that it's not possible. (I wouldn't use the AWC system to add my calcium or carbonates from my CaRx or 2-part.)

    And I'll reiterate, only dose to increase levels while you are home.
     
  7. OP
    RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass TCMAS President
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    That is sound advice and a good reminder of what I know to be true... I had a moment of weakness! (o:
     
  8. OP
    RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass TCMAS President
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    Well the black bucket is mixing almost exactly as stated 375 (my test came in just under doing a double volume size) so I'd assume the bucket is right vs my test skills.

    My tank is still reading at 290 and I'll need to order a powder because the liquid dose calls for me to add 1/2 bottle per day (125ml) until it back up to target.

    It would also, to no big surprise, seem that my 20% water change had negligible impact on raising potassium levels. It simply has to be larger to have a big enough impact.
     
  9. spsick

    spsick Acro-poor-a
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    If it helps at all, I found I must not have mixed a (or a few) bucket of salt well enough or had one out of spec. I’m on blue bucket and found my potassium to be low so I got the Brightwell powder for dosing. Since then, on to new buckets I’ve been tossing the bag thoroughly and have not had to dose since.

    That being said, why add to your AWC and not your ATO? Being that the powder is mixed with RO anyway to give a specific amount of ppm you could just do that without concern of precipitation or over saturation.
     
  10. OP
    RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass TCMAS President
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    Thanks for the heads up... I've not been remixing my salt at all and could certainly be a contributing factor.

    I guess I didn't consider adding to my ato because it runs through my kalk reactor and that just seemed less of a potential since it's being saturated. Also, my AWC is consistent daily on the amount where my kalk probably is close daily but not quite.
     
  11. spsick

    spsick Acro-poor-a
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    Ahhhh kalk. That’s makes sense then. Wonder if Dr Farley has responded to a similar question to this on R2R? Basically any chemistry question I’ve ever had has been answered by him several times over.
     
  12. OP
    RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass TCMAS President
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    I up pouring the whole bottle in my auto water change salt mix. At the rate that it's dosing into my tank and the amount that I need it's only adding about half as much as it needs to so I figured what the heck.
     
  13. OP
    RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass TCMAS President
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    Unfortunately my test kit can't test at that concentration so I won't really know if it's effective or not unless it crashes considerably.
     
  14. tomte25

    tomte25 TCMAS Event Committee
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    For those of us that could benefit from knowing, what symptom(s) were you seeing that led you to realize you were low in potassium? Poor coloration or tissue growth?
     
  15. OP
    RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass TCMAS President
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    I've always had poor coloration with several coral using the led (great on others) so I added a t5.

    Ultimately what raised a flag was a pink encrusting monti turned grey. They polyps were still out initially so I thought it was just the new t5 changing its color. Instead I believe this was simply a catalyst, not because the coral won't end up liking the light necessarily but because it couldn't handle the change under those conditions. If I think back the intense vibrant pink started to fade over time but the dramatic shift to grey was just after the lighting change.

    There are a couple others that don't look ideal but I can't say for certain what's causing it.

    I've read now on two different supplement bottles that potassium helps reds and another that it helps blues. The fading of reds seems to be the case for me and possibly on several others.

    *it should be added that Langer tipped me off to this as it crashed his entire system and I believe I was on my way there.
     
  16. OP
    RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass TCMAS President
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    Update, adding potassium to my AWC hasn't seemed to impact anything negatively (seemed).

    My number is back up to 340 from 290 and I can see the pick coming back into my monti already which previously had developed several dead spots.

    I now have to add 150ml of stock solution using the powder from brightwell per day. 4 tsps into the RedSea essential elements 16oz bottle made that easy since dosing instructions are all based on an 8oz bottle.
     
  17. OP
    RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass TCMAS President
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    Better update, I use the measuring cap from the bottle to add 20ml of powder and no longer use a tsp.
     

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