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· Fuzzy Stick Crazy
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7,385 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi guys,

I'm pretty new to the hobby so I have lots of questions

I have a question(s) about replacing my bioballs in my wet/dry filter with live rock. There are 2 media trays for my filter, one is submersed and contains porous glass biocyclinders, the other media tray is above the water line and contains bio balls. My reef tank is VERY new (1 week old!) and here is a list of all the equipment.

55G Rectangular with...
216W 48" Wavepoint T5 Lighting (2 10K, 2 420),
Rapids Pro RP3 wet/dry filter (w/ great built in skimmer),
2x 530GPH Seio Super Flow Series PHeads,
68lbs of live rock stacked well.

Water Parameters:

Temp: Rock solid at 78F
pH 8.0 (a lil low)
Spec Grav. 1.024
Ammonia .25ppm
Nitrites 1ppm (Tank is cycling fast. levels were off the charts a few days ago)
Nitrates 10ppm
Alk 10.9dkH
Calcium 640ppm!!!!

My questions are:

1) Should I replace the glass bio cylinders with crushed live rock or will the de-nitrifying bacteria grow there?
2) Can I replace the bio balls with crushed live rock even though it is above the water line of the wet/dry sump?
3) Should I remove the mechanical filtration pads to prevent detritus buildup?
4) What should I do about my high calcium?

My tank is still in its baby stages so I want to make any drastic changes now so it doesn't bite me later.

Also, I posted a similar post in the filter section but I wanted more visibility on my questions. Apologies for that.

Also also, feel free to ask me any questions about my system that newbies consistently forget. Chances are I fall into that category.

Ill post some pictures soon!
 

· Registered
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1,009 Posts
take everything out of the sump except skimmer and pump.. no balls ceramics or pads. no sense in spending money to put expensive rock in the sump

about calcium i wouldnt worry right now. just dont dose. dont dose anything you dont test for that matter. only things you should ever really need to dose that a water change doesnt replenish is Ca n Alk (depending on your water change regiment)

but i wouldnt do a change for a month or so in my opinon since its new, definatly wait till your sure the cycle is over.
 

· $ The Poor Reefer $
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582 Posts
Well idk, I have a few pieces of lr in my sump, i don't think it's a negative thing at all, but most of that beneficial bacteria will be in your lr in the display tank. And yes ditch the bioballs, they will be good for absorbing nitrates for awhile, but they will naturally start to decompose and release ALL those nitrates back into your system: no bueno lol. And same thing with those filter pads, replace with small pieces of crushed lr, safer filtration for sure. But I might honestly wait until your cycle is over first
 

· Registered
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293 Posts
Do not use crushed lr in your media trays your are just replacing one bio media with another, once live rock, is broke into small pieces it loses its anaerobic properties and becomes nothing more then a regular bio media that can not complete the Nitrate to nitrogen process. You can replace your mechanical filtration pads with sump sock or 200 Micron filter cloth that way they can be washed regularly, most time they are swapped and washed two to three times a week for best practice.

So IMO:
replace the glass bio cylinders with - nothing
replace the bio balls with - nothing
replace filtration pads with - sump sock or 200 Micron filter cloth or nothing
 

· Premium Member
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34,741 Posts
Welcome to TRT!!

:wavey:

i am with Hudzon- remove anything that you even think looks like a wet dry section. if in doubt leave it empty. keep the skimmer.

pH is fine. do not stress over this one.

as for the Ca/alk. what salt mix did you use? did you add any supplements?

G~
 

· Fuzzy Stick Crazy
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7,385 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Geoff,

Thanks for the reply. For the CA/Alk. I guess I have to explain how the tank was set up. I initially used declorinated tap water to fill the 55+ Sump. The salt I used at the time was a 50G bag of Kent Reef salt. My salinity was very low (1.020) so I went to a specalty LFS and i bought pharmacetical grade reef salt and plenty of RO/DI water. I use that to top it off now. I dont add the salt when topping off.

Also, I see your from Durham NC, I hope ur a Duke fan.
 

· Fuzzy Stick Crazy
Joined
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7,385 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
the CA/Alk was only the second time I ran the test. I might have gotten the procedure wrong. When I get back from my business trip I'll run the test again and see what it reads. Then I'll take it to my LFS to double check my accuracy.
 

· $ The Poor Reefer $
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582 Posts
Oops... Sorry to give poor advice :( I did phrase that a little weird, I meant small pieces of lr, not small crushed lr like gravel, I meant a few smaller pieces that were maybe 2"/3". That's what I have in one section of my sump, is that too small? Am I gonna have those problems eventually? you've almost got me worried here Geoff lol
 

· Premium Member
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26,774 Posts
Oops... Sorry to give poor advice :( I did phrase that a little weird, I meant small pieces of lr, not small crushed lr like gravel, I meant a few smaller pieces that were maybe 2"/3". That's what I have in one section of my sump, is that too small? Am I gonna have those problems eventually? you've almost got me worried here Geoff lol
you only need the Rock in your display, or if you need extra rock (ammonia are traceable) you can add a few big pieces in your sump.

you want your system to be stream lined and easy to take care of, and adding small pieces of rock just trap detritus and make more work then you need ;)
 
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