help with dosing

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so recently I just had a daughter and she has been taking up ALL of my time. ive had my tank on cruise control for awhile and have been slacking for a few weeks because of my new parenting responsibilities. anyway i got a 75g rr tank with a 30 gal sump and I always just dosed 2 tbs kalk per gallon in my 5 gallon ATO bucket. that has always been enough and my tank sat at about 7.8-8.0 dkh and 430-460 cal, mag at 1300. recently no matter what I do the tank stays low in the alk range and cal. im really strugling to keep things good. my corals look really bad and the colors are fading and/or dying. just checked my tank today here are the stats. (all test kits are red sea pro)


ideally i want to keep dkh at 10 and cal at 450-480, im just not sure what to do. i just upped my kalk to 3tbs per gallon with 45ml vinegar. per instructions of randay holmes-farly, its been 2 days and no improvement. i also have ESV b-ionic 2 part. what can i do to turn this around and get things thriving again? what do other people dose for their 75g?

Pip Tazo

Well-known member
Apr 9, 2013
congrats on your daughter! this might be a dumb question but have you tried doing a really big water change? I only dose to fix alk in my tank. but when my water parameters are way off, I just like to start fresh.


Oct 8, 2012
kalk will maintain, but it will rarely raise....
figure out the dosage on the 2 part to get to where you want to be.. (1.5 dkh a day), continue dosing kalk as normal... if it still won't stay, then evalute again..
also, the small amount of vinegar probably isn't going to be a problem, but it can lead to a bacteria bloom.. don't let cloudy water get really cloudy without doing a water change.. bateria blooms steal the oxygen from the water...


Well-known member
Feb 25, 2013
Kent, WA
WOOHOO on the new baby :) Yea looks like you've got the right plan in place just gotta get things dialed in. So for my 40B fully overstocked of sps acro's goin on 3 yrs running now, I drip kalk daily along with some add'l ato. My kalk pump doses a total of 1 liter a day broken up into 5 doses t/o the day which contains 10ml vinegar with 1.5 teaspoon kalk mix per liter. I worked up to this concentration over the years and will simply watch my pH prior to raising the kalk dose again. I do have to supplement some alkalinity daily since the kalk maintains by calcium, but not nearly as well with my dKH.

I'm basically on autopilot and parameters normally run around these ranges the last year when checked every 1-3weeks:
Mg 1380ppm
Alk 10.8dKH
Ca 430ppm
ph 8.41 (daytime)
Temp 78.1-79.7F
Salinity 1.024-1.025

That being said, I would recommend staying with your current kalk mix dosing and simply add some alk supplement and slowly raise the alk over time. Then at some point when things are set, you can slowly increase your kalk mix concentration to accommodate the growing needs of corals. Good luck with your tank, but most especially your new daughter!!! When she's big enough she will be your lil reefkeeper helper just as my 2 lil kids are to me lol.


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