Originally Posted by hectic
Hi guys, new to this forum have 55 galtank with wet dry filter ,remora protien skimmer and 2 powerheads for current.30 pounds live rock corraline algea thriving cycled tank3 months tank is 8 months old have variaety of soft corals snails hermits 6 damselsassorted 1 6 line wrasse, 1 bi-colored angel,b-day gift frm my daughter,2percs and 1 big bristle star ,1sea cuke,And of course 1 funky worm with hair on it. well i keep tank at 77.5F 0nitrite, but within 1 weel spike in nitrate to30 and alsokh went to the floor, ph is stable at 8.0 sg is at1.026 have media in sump for no2,no3,ammonia and phosphates .I do a 5 gallon watter change every 2 weeks lites on timer10on 14 off. im freaking abt Kh ! Add c-Balance every 3 days iodine 1 week HELP Please
Awesome question. Thanks for posting.
Your problem lies in your wet dry filter. You need to remove the bioballs completely. I know it sounds scary, but we have not had a need for biomedia in the saltwater aquarium for over 15 years now. This is nothing new. Your live rock will be sufficient to break down ammonia, with the benefit of producing Nitrogen Gas as the final result. This Nitrogen Gas leaves the system naturally and is non-toxic.
The bioballs as so efficient at processing ammonia that they are actually preventing your skimmer from doing the job you purchased it to do, which is to remove organic wastes from the aquarium before they have the opportunity to become Nitrate. Additionally, by having organic waste directly removed, you save your buffer system and will have a much more stable alkalinity.
Remove the bioballs. Right now. Get up and take them out. Nothing bad will happen to your water. I promise. Just take them out.
(Disclaimer: This is possible only because of the presence of live rock in the aquarium. In my experience, 30 lbs of live rock is plenty to sustain this size aquarium with such bioload and said skimmer.)
A couple other points of reference.
* The sea cucumber may be toxic. If it dies, you could have a total wipeout.
* BiColor Angels are very difficult fish to keep. Make sure you keep your Nitrates under 20ppm and alkalinity stable.
* You may want to reconsider dosing iodine. There is a thread at the top of the General Saltwater section right now that you need to read.
* What purpose does your water change routine serve? I am not disagreeing with the concept, I'm just curious why you do the amount you do at said frequency. What are you trying to accomplish?