FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ Reverse Osmosis Technique
FAQ Ultra Pure Water Filter
FAQ Skimmer
FAQ Nitrate Filter (ADN)
FAQ Calcium Reactor - Lime Reactor (CO2 driven)
FAQ "Kalkwasserreaktor" (KWR - Calcium hydroxid)
FAQ Phosphate-minus-Reactor PMR and Phosphat-Xglobuli  
FAQ Hard Corals

FAQ Reverse Osmosis Technique

Rejects R.O. technique all substances?

All dissolved and particular substances will be rejected, except gases like CO2. But the rejection differs from substance to substance. Nitrate and silica are rejected only with 80-90%, but pesticides and medicaments with more than 99%. The average rejection can be measured with the electrical conductivity or with a TDS stick. This value should not below 95% with a new membrane.

Is it possible to flow the permeate upwards?

No problem, if only some meters should be reached. Every 10 meters you loose 1 bar working pressure. The working pressure is the tap water pressure (beyond the filter) minus the permeate pressure.

What can I do if the rejections gets bad?

1. check the pre filter: produce for about 30 minutes water without the filter. If the rejection gets better, change the pre filter immediately and connect it with the membrane housing.
2. flush the membrane for about 1-2 hours. If the rejection is not better ask the R.O. producer to flush the membrane with special chemicals in a membrane testing units or change the membrane. 
With our Reverse Osmosis Calculater you can calculate standard flow and rejection very easily.

Is it possible that the rejection gets bad of one substance but those of the other are o.k.?

No. If the rejection get bad, all substances will go better through the membrane. The average rejection can be measured with the electrical conductivity. 

What can I do if the permeate has too much silica?

Check the R.O. membrane. If it is o.k. use an ultra pure filter after the R.O. unit. As an alternative a 2-stage R.O. system with better rejection.

Is it possible to enlarge the water flow of a R.O. unit?

Units of high quality manufactures are able to add additional module and/or a suitable booster pump.

FAQ Ultra Pure Water Filter

Can I use the ultra pure water filter directly at the tap water?

No. The capacity will be only about 50 litre. After this the water will be bad. The ultra pure filter must be connected after the R.O. unit (permeate) or after a normal ion exchange resin. 

Is the resin of the AquaCare ultra pure filter reusable?

Theoretically it is possible. But the power of the recycled resins is not so high and the costs for recycling and transport make the product not cheap.

FAQ Skimmer

Is it necessary that a skimmer produces waste water all the time?

No. The organic load in the water is varying very strongly. After feeding or after regeneration of corals the load is high and a skimmer must produce black foam. The other time, if organic substances are below the limit of sensitivity, the skimmer cannot work. In a normal Aquarium the skimmer works only 1-5 hours per day. If a skimmer is working (= producing foam) all the time it has too less power. Use a bigger and/or better (= lower limit of sensitivity) skimmer.

Air wood versus venturi (= injector) versus needle wheel - what is the best?

All systems have advantages and disadvantages. Air woods produce smaller bubbles than venturis (if you compare small skimmers of hobbyists). But with the time they get bigger and bigger. So you have to change them every 2 - 12 weeks (depending on water quality). For air woods you need an additional air pump. Needle wheel pumps are expensive but they take less energy. They create a good bubble image.

AquaCare venturis are driven with only one stronger water pump. Other brands need two water pumps: one for the venturi, one for the water flow.

Are skimmer essential for reef aquariums?

It is possible to keep reef aquariums without a skimmer. But these systems are not so stable against high and sudden organic loads (too much food, death animals). All substances that are eliminated with a skimmer needs in an aquarium without skimmer a lot of oxygen and buffer capacity. Phosphate and nitrate will accumulate faster in systems without skimmer and the CO2 concentration is not so well balanced. If you use a chalk reactor (driven with CO2) you get very fast problems with the pH if you do not driven a skimmer that will blow out the too much CO2

But in systems without skimmers you will see another micro fauna and in these systems you have a better chance with fish that needs many different kinds of planctonic food. 

Eliminates a skimmer trace elements?

Yes, it is possible. But the advantages of a skimmer outweighs this lost of trace elements. It very easy to dose trace elements to compensate the lost.

FAQ Nitrate Filter (ADN)

How long is the starting time of ADN?

The starting time of the ADN filter is very long, because these special bacteria are growing very slowly (like nitrifying bacteria). Depending on the bacteria in the aquarium the starting time varies from 1 to 10 weeks. If the system works stable it produces less bacteria compared to heterotrophic filter (alcohol or other organic food). 

Is chalk column necessary after a ADN filter?

No. If the carbonate hardness KH (buffer capacity) is not below 5°dH nearly nothing will happens to the pH value in the aquarium. If you connect a chalk column after the ADN the surface of the chalk granules will block very fast with gypsum and bacteria. This cover hinders the neutralization of the ADN acid. You must change the granules regularly if it should work.

How can I reduce the power of ADN?

First do not buy a too large filter. If any nitrate is in the aquarium reduce the water inlet flow and if this will not work reduce the sulphur granules. The taken out granules you can dry and store for the future. 

FAQ Calcium Reactor - Lime Reactor (CO2 driven)

Is the granule volume of Turbo Chalk Reactor too small?

No. The volume is calculated to get maximum up flow in the calcite tube. Because of the porous and fine material, because of the very low internal pH of about 5.0-5.3, because of the very high up flow the power of the Turbo Reactor is so strong, that you must operate the reactor only for some hours. 

Precipitates the new chalk in the neutralization tube?

Only if you let more air into the neutralization tube as advised in the manual. The pH of the out coming water should not over 7.3. Above it is possible that the power of the reactor falls.

Why use AquaCare Turbo granules and not coral fragments?

Turbo granules are better soluble than coral fragments. Coral fragments do not contain many trace elements (as many people say!!!) and sometimes a lot of phosphate leaches out of coral fragments. Even if coral fragments has trace elements it is not possible to dissolve them in chalk reactor. 

Is there a pH drop in the aquarium water by using the Turbo-Chalk-Reactor?

Only bad designed or incorrectly driven calcium reactors lower the pH of the aquarium water. The Turbo-Chalk-Reactor neutralizes the outgoing water to a pH of > 7,0. Additionally this reactor is operating only for some hours per day to supply enough calcium and alkalinity for the corals. If the alkalinity is raised by the Turbo-Chalk-Reactor normally the pH in the aquarium water raises, too.

Produces the AquaCare Turbo-Chalk-Reactor phosphate?

If the Turbo-Chalk-Reactor is driven with the AquaCare Turbo-granules (Turbo-calcium and Turbo-magnesium) phosphate will not be produced. Quite the contrary: the forming sediments in the sediment stage of this reactor eliminate a part of the inflowing phosphate by chemosorption. Hard coral enthusiasts must not be afraid by using the AquaCare Turbo-Chalk-Reactor.

FAQ "Kalkwasserreaktor" (KWR - Calcium hydroxid)

How much "Kalkwasser" should be dosed into the aquarium?

All evaporated water should be refilled with "Kalkwasser". Only if the pH of the aquarium water is over 8.4 do not use "Kalkwasser".

Where should I put in the "Kalkwasser"?

Let the "Kalkwasser" into the aquarium system at a place with strong currents. Avoid the near of pumps and chalk reactor outlets. Otherwise establishing chalk crusts will block pump impellers very fast.

Is it possible to work with "Kalkwasser" and chalk reactors?

Yes. But the outlets of both systems should not flow together at the same place. Take different places or different times (e.g. "Kalkwasser" in the night and chalk reactor at day).

FAQ Phosphate-minus-Reactor PMR and Phosphat-Xglobuli  

How long keeps a filter charge?

You cannot answer this questions exactly because the capacity depends on many factors. The most important are the desired maximum phosphate concentration in the tank and the phosphate input to the aquarium.
- The lower the desired maximum phosphate concentration the short the time to the next charging of the filter.
- The higher the phosphate input (amount of feeding, kind of food, phosphate bleaching substances) the shorter the time to the next charging. 

How large is the capacity of a phosphate adsorber?

This questions is only answered with the help of an adsorption isotherm, because the capacity depends on the maximum tolerated phosphate concentration. A statement like "one liter binds 5 g phosphate" is not helpful, if the maximum tolerated phosphate concentration is not given. Serious manufactures show a phosphate-adsorption-isotherm. 

What is the achievable minimum phosphate concentration in the aquarium?

The minimum phosphate concentration depends on the flow through the filter (see technical data of the PMR filter).
The higher the flow the low the achievable minimum phosphate concentration. If you need concentrations far below the recommended 0.2 mg/l (ppm) phosphate you must choose a larger filter with a higher water flow.

Will adsorbed phosphate dissolve with the time?

Under aquaristic conditions phosphate will not come out of the Phosphate-Xglobuli. The phosphate is bounded very tight by means of chemo-sorption. Only with aggressive chemical methods you will dissolve phosphate out.

Will matters come out of Phosphate-Xglobuli?

No. The matrix of Phosphate-Xglobuli is a plastic material that will not dissolve in water. The iron nano-particles are irreversible bounded to this matrix. Therefore no colour will come out of the material.

FAQ Hard Corals

Why become hard corals brown?

The brown colour arises from the number of the coral's zooxanthellae (micro algae living in symbiosis with the coral polyp). There are many factors that increase their numbers:
1. wrong spectrum of the lights: choose light with a higher Kelvin-number (10,000 Kelvin of more)
2. too low lights: choose the light with a higher lumen-number
3. too much fertilizing substances in the water: reduce nitrate and phosphate by adequate means (nitrate filter, phosphate adsorber)

Why become hard corals white?

When hard corals get white the number of coral's zooxanthellae gets down or the typical pigments that causes the colour vanish:
1. too high temperature: over about 30°C the coral blows out the zooxanthellare (coral bleaching); normally the coral will not recover even if the conditions are good again.
2. missing trace elements: increase the dosing of trace elements
3. missing organic substances (ONLY in very low-nutrient water: < 0.05 mg/l phosphate, < 5 mg/l nitrate): dose organics and/or trace elements regularly
4. too low lights: encrease the lumen-number
5. too low UV radiation: without a slight UV radiation the protection pigments are not formed. Normally this factor occurs only with LED lamps that do not contain UV-LEDs.

updated: 02 July 2017