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arringar 04-17-2017 06:19 PM

Converting established tank to Zeovit
I am preparing to convert my system to zeovit. I have purchased a Skimz ZM120 reactor, 2 liters KZ zeolite, zeostart, zeofood, and zeobak. I have also purchased KZ Amino Acids, a Potassium test kit (I have not monitored K before), and KZ carbon.

My current plan:

I have done some research and I have decided to run the reactor 3 hours on/3 hours off controlled by my Apex to prevent reducing the nutrients too quickly, plus remove the GFO.

I will follow the instructions for starting a zeovit system, but perhaps reduce the zeofood slightly to prevent increasing existing nuisance algae.

I am making this post because I would like helpful suggestions from experienced zeoheads to help prevent making unnecessary mistakes. So PLEASE reply with any suggestions you have. I will post updates as I progress.

Here are the details of my system:

1. Gross water volume of your complete system (incl. sump etc.) - US gallons / UK gallons / liter

90 Gallon tank, 30 gallon sump, 120 US gallons, gross

2. Net water volume (incl. sump etc.) - US gallons / UK gallons / liter

Approximately 95 US Gallons

3. Are you using a CaCO2 reactor or other technique


4. Are you using a PO4 reactor (how long, how long ago, etc.)

Yes, currently, used for about 6 months.

5. Are you using Ozone


6. Are you using UV


7. What skimmer are you using (type, rated water volume)

Coralbox D700 - rated for 90-210 US Gallons

8. What are your actual PO4 and NO3 levels

PO4 - 0.00 per Hanna Checker
NO3 - ~2ppm per Nyos test kit

9. What are your actual Ca, Alk and Mg levels

Ca - 420ppm
Alk - 9
Mg - 1340ppm

10. What filtration method do you use (refugium, DSB, Miracle Mud, etc.)

Refugium with Miracle Mud, no macroalgae
~2 inch sandbed, lots of live rock

11. Type of light (Watt, color temp, how old, etc.)

2 x AI Hydra 26 HD, running at ~18,000K
1 x 54W - 48 - T5 ATI BLUE PLUS
1 x 54W - 48 T5 - ATI PURPLE PLUS

12. What corals do you keep

Various mushrooms, ricordeas



13. Tissue color (light or dark)

Colors are not great. Some SPS corals have ok colors, but most are either too dark or slightly brown. Softie and LPS colors are good.

14. How long has the tank been running

About 9 months since I moved, but all the live rock and some coral comes from my original system that was running for 8 years.

15. Why do you want to use the ZEOvit system

Improve coral colors/health. Reduce nutrients to ULNS levels.

16. Any supplemental dosing (type, amount, why, etc.)

I dose kalkwasser (Brightwell Kalk+2) in topoff water to maintain pH/Ca/Alk/Mg/Sr
Red Sea NO3-PO4X to keep nutrients down until recently - this has caused problems recently with colors and also 1 coral lost to RTN. I believe the component in this additive that causes corals to expel zooxanthellae may be the cause of this. I have since stopped dosing this.
Red Sea Reef Energy A&B - dosed every other day @ 10ml total dosage each
Seachem Fuel @ 21ml twice per week
Spongepower - I have been dosing spongepower for about 2 years - 3-4 drops daily

17. Live rock (how much, how old, etc.)

About 85lbs very porous rock, 8 years old

18. Any present problems


19. Problem description (tissue loss tips, tissue loss base, diatom bloom, algae, etc.)

Coral colors, as mentioned above.
Very small amount of GHA
Bubble algae outbreak, but improving slowly

20. What test kit do you use (how old, recently switched, etc.)

I use Salifert and Nyos test kits, plus Hanna low range checker for PO4. Test kits are new or not more than a few months old.

21. Present dosing, amounts and intervals (ZEOvit, ZEObak, ZEOfood, ZEOstart, ZEOspur2, etc.)


22. Other water parameters and water stability (salinity, temp, etc.)

Temperature: 77.6 F
Salinity: 33.8 PPT
pH: 8.05 - 8.24 daily range
ORP: 320

23. Which salt brand do you use

I.O. Reef Crystals

arringar 04-17-2017 06:58 PM

Some clarifications:

I only intend to use 1 liter of the KZ zeolite in the reactor. The second liter is for the first replacement cycle.

I will be replacing the Red Sea Reef Energy and Fuel with Zeofood and KZ AA over a couple of weeks.

Based on research I may reduce spongepower to every other day.

G.Alexander 04-18-2017 01:52 AM

Hi arringar :)


First of all I would recommend to download the dosing guide from:


It contains a lot of useful information and will be helpful to get a feeling for the dosage.

First start with the basics products to decrease nutrients:

1. Place 1 liter zeovit in a Zeo Reactor. Water flow around 100 US gallons per hour. Connect the reactor pump to a clock timer and run the reactor pump with a 3 hour on / 3 hour off / 3 hour on interval. Please make sure the zeolite is not exposed to air while the pump is switched off. Clean the material daily. Leave the zeolite 4 weeks in the filter until you do the first change out. This is the first changing interval, others could be lengthen to 6 – 8 weeks.

2. Place 0.4 liters activated carbon in a filter sock and keep it in a passive water flow in your sump, changed every 30 days. Knead the carbon daily to keep the surface clean. Most users get perfect results with korallenzucht carbon.

3. Dose 4 drops ZeoBac daily for the first 2 weeks, flowed by a 2 – 3 x weekly dosage of 4 drops. Dose 0.4 ml ZeoStart 2 x daily (morning & evening). Dose those in front of the Zeo reactor pump while it is switched on. As you already use SpongePower you can continue to dose 4 drops every other day.

Later on you could use the additional products for coral coloration. Adjust your skimmer to skim wet, keeping it clean to export as much as possible. Do a weekly water change of 5 – 10 % with a good salt.

With the system it is not recommended to use a PO4 absorber. I would recommend to remove 1/3 of the absorber if you start with zeovit, than reduce the rest over the next 6 – 8 weeks step by step to zero. If this is done keep a eye on the PO4 level which should not increase.

Basic water parameters looking good except KH, try to keep them as stabile as possible close the NSW in the following ranges:

KH 6.5 – 7.5
Ca 400 – 420 mg
Mg 1250 – 1300 mg
K+ ~ 380 mg

For a nutrient poor environment K+ (potassium) seems to be a important element. I would recommend you to get a test kit for this element also, posting your results.

You should be able to remove the miracle mud later once the system is stabile. Stop dosing all the other products you use when you start with ZeoVit except a KH and Ca supplement.

Kalkwasser is something I would also not continue to use:


This is a start-up dosage which might have to be adjusted later.


arringar 04-18-2017 05:25 PM

In place of the kalkwasser, are you suggesting switching to dosing 2 part?

I have had issues maintaining pH above the 7.8-7.9 range without the kalk.

G.Alexander 04-19-2017 01:50 AM

The PH will not be a problem. Because of the tank size two part dosing might be the best to keep KH and Ca stabile. A CaCO2 reactor would be another possibility.


arringar 04-20-2017 06:59 PM

I installed my new zeovit reactor today and I've hit my first problem... backsiphon from the feed pump to the sump. My reactor is external. This also interferes with the water level in the sump and consequently the ATO.

I'm left with limited options.

1. A check valve (no way)
2. A siphon break with feed line above the reactor water level (this forces me to hard plumb the reactor and prevents removal for cleaning and zeolite exchanges - even with unions it would still be nearly impossible with the space I have available in the stand)
3. Connect to my manifold and run a constant but significantly reduced flow rate during the break in period.

What are your thoughts here? Is there some other option I haven't considered? I even looked into electronic valves but I can't find anything.

G.Alexander 04-21-2017 04:18 AM

So you just have the problem if you switch off the reactor pump ?


arringar 04-23-2017 07:27 AM

Yes, that's correct

G.Alexander 04-24-2017 01:48 AM

Alternatively you can run the reactor with continuous flow but just use a flow of 50 US gallons per hour in this case.


arringar 04-26-2017 05:57 PM

I have been running it constantly for a week at 40-50gph. So far I have seen improvements in the growth rate and colors of my corals just from the use of the KZ aminos and zeofood. Algae growth on the glass is slowing down. The GHA has stopped growing but isn't disappearing yet. I'm still slowly lowering my alkalinity. I don't want to shock the corals with drastic changes. So far so good.

arringar 05-06-2017 07:21 PM

Everything has been going fine until now, phosphates still at 0.00 per my hanna checker, nitrates are up to 4ppm but I'm not overly concerned with that. All params are still as they were before. I reduced the use of GFO and have been bringing the alk down very slowly. It is still at just below 9 DKH.

Today I am seeing some burned tips on a couple of my SPS, they're sliming at the tips and the very tip looks burned. I am also getting a bit of clear slime floating in my sump. I have been dosing everything at the recommended levels.

To address the issue I have turned off the GFO and reduced the flow into my zeolith reactor a bit. I have added a dose of sponge power and a small amount of iodine in the form of red sea coral colors part A.

Tested yesterday:

Phosphate 0
Nitrate 4ppm
Alk - ~9dkh
Mg - 1290ppm
Ca - 460ppm
K - 380ppm

The past 24 hours pH has ranged 8.04 - 8.22, which is very typical for my system. The Ca was at 480ppm on Tuesday. I did a 5% water change on Wednesday and its coming down.

I am freaking out a little, I've never had an issue with tips burning like this and one of my favorite corals is suffering the most. Do you have any suggestions?

G.Alexander 05-06-2017 10:36 PM

Reducing the reactor flow temporary is all you can do at the moment. Make sure to decrease the KH furthermore slowly to ~ 7 – 7.5. Have you done any changes or added any kind of new equipment before this has happen ?


arringar 05-07-2017 01:10 AM

The only change that has occurred is the recent spike in calcium up to 480 and the nitrates increased to 4ppm after adding a couple of rocks that I had previously taken out of the tank. I knew this was likely to cause a slight temporary increase in nitrate, but that small increase definitely didn't cause this.

I think I overdid it with the reactor and the GFO combined. Would it be a good idea to reduce the zeostart or skip the dosage of it temporarily?

G.Alexander 05-08-2017 01:50 AM

The GFO might be the problem here, a quick decrease of PO4 can cause TN starting from the tips. I would recommend to keep the dosage as it is to prevent additional biological changes.


arringar 05-11-2017 08:04 PM

After some observation I have realized that it wasn't burned tips at all. It was my regal angel nipping at the tips of my sps.

I've had this fish for 2.5 years and it has never done this once, but I reduced feeding a bit to help lower nutrients and he got hungry. Thankfully after I started feeding normally again he stopped the behavior.

Phosphates are still at zero on the Hanna checker but nitrates have now gone up to 5-6ppm. I've continued using the GFO at a reduced flow and reduced quantity and increased the flow through my zeolite slightly. Otherwise I've maintained the regular recommended regimen.

The GHA is maintaining or growing slowly. Microalgae growth has definitely increased somewhat.

Alkalinity has maintained at 9.2dkh despite lowering dosage. I'm continuing to lower dosage each week to work toward getting it down slowly.

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