ULNS Running and Setup Cost

Discussion in 'Chemical Filtration / Low Nutrient Systems - LNS' started by Manic, 17 Sep 2010.

  1. Manic

    Manic Moderator

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    Hey everyone,

    Seen as though there has been a lot of interest in ULNS/LNS, I thought I would start a thread to show how much it costs to run one of these systems. I'm going to use the NeoZeo as an example as that is the one I am most familiar with.

    Initial Costs:

    Reef Octopus / Reeftek ZF-140 Zeolith Filter Reactor: R1733.00
    NeoZeo Zeolite Media: R240.00/Kg
    MB7 500ml: R208.00
    Reef BioFuel 500ml: R208.00 or Bottle of Vodka R70.00

    The initial start up cost is then: R2251-2389 depending on which carbon source you decide to use. I use vodka as it is cheaper and lasts longer. This price is regardless of the size of your tank as you have to purchase these products initially

    Running Costs:

    The following will give a monthly running cost of the system per gallon of system volume.

    Zeolite media needs a 25% replacement per month. The recommended amount of zeolite media is 1Kg/100g.

    25% Zeolite replacement: R0.6/month/gallon

    Carbon source needs to be added twice a day, at the moment I am using 2ml a day.

    Carbon Source: R0.04/month/gallon

    Bacteria source needs to be added weekly at a rate of 5ml/50 gallons.

    Bacteria Source: R0.21/month/gallon

    Iodine needs to be dosed weekly or better daily. I dose a ml of Brightwell Iodion Liquid a day.

    Iodine Suppliment: R0.07/month/gallon

    Potassium needs to be dosed if you are using zeolite media as they remove potassium. I use Brightwell potasium solution.

    Potassium: R1.00/month/gallon

    Then once low nutrient have been reached you need to dose amino acids to keep your corals alive and happy. I use SeaChem reef plus as it is cheaper than the brightwells amino acids.

    Amino Acids: R0.35/month/gallon

    This covers the basic supplementation needed for running the NeoZeo method of ULNS. There is still colour enhancing supplements as well as general coral supplements. Whilst running a ULNS it is also vital that alk, calcium and magnesium be kept constant and in the required range.

    The total running cost of this system is then: R2.27/month/gallon. This is just a rough estimate though if anyone was interested.
     
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  3. keyaam

    keyaam

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    Nice article manic and to anyone who is interested please read the above over and over and over again. Maintain Natural sea water levels

    • Calcium 410–430 ppm
    • Magnesium 1250–1300 ppm
    • Alkalinity 6.5–7.5 dKH
    • Potassium 380–400 ppm
    • Salinity of 34–36 ppt
    (Specific Gravity 1.024—1.026)
     
  4. Manic

    Manic Thread Starter Moderator

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    Another thing with LNS is that the alk range of 6.5-7.5 is really important. Alk under 6 will cause tissue necrosis from the base and alk over 8 will cause burnt tips. Alkalinity is probably the most important factor when running one of these systems.
     
    maj likes this.
  5. durleo

    durleo

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    How do you maintain ur Alkalinity at those levels?
     
  6. maj

    maj

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    great thread Manic,perfect guidline for potential users.
    So best to go ULNS with Saltmix as more chance of maintaining perfect water params,esp alk
     
  7. Tony

    Tony

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    A few words of caution from experience. The RO zeolite filter comes with a 2000lph pump which is way too powerful. Another R500 bucks will be needed to get the right pump and the plumbing. A 500lph pump with a gate valve will be needed to slow the flow down to about 400-450 lph. Use Lugols solution for you iodine as a little goes a long way

    You can use the Kent zeolites which are a lot cheaper than the Neo Zeo
     
  8. Manic

    Manic Thread Starter Moderator

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    Calcium reactor, tried before with dosing Tropic Marin Bio-Calcium twice a day but couldn't keep everything constant for the whole day and lost a few corals along the way.
     
  9. gaboon

    gaboon

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    Where do you get potassium test kits?
     
  10. Manic

    Manic Thread Starter Moderator

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    You can't in this country so you just dose the recommended dosage on the bottle. I think Tunze makes a potassium test kit though.
     
  11. Difficult marine

    Difficult marine

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    sponsors Ocean son can get Fauna Marin potassium test kits
     
  12. Manic

    Manic Thread Starter Moderator

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    Thanks, I'll contact them and find out.
     
  13. Tony

    Tony

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    How were you dosing the bio calcium? That is all I use and have been very successful with it but I dosed it based on alkalinity consumption
     
  14. snail

    snail

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    Hi Tony

    on the zeolite filter there is a gate valve my using the 2000lph pump and turned the valve to 1/4 to make it 400-450lph is it still needed for me to change the pump to a 500lph
     
  15. snail

    snail

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    need help please

    i just started 2 days ago using the zeolite


    for the zeolite filter can i pluge it ones a week?
    and how do i add the bacteria and food every day or ones a week?
     
  16. Mekaeel

    Mekaeel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Hi Snail, as long as you turned the flow down it will be fine. You can leave the original pump on.

    Zeolites should be flushed daily or twice a day for optimum results. Pump the reactor 10-15 times.
    The directions for dosing bacteria should be on the bottle. Which brand are you using?
    I prefer dosing a little daily, rather than one big dose once a week. Basically the same with every supplement I use.
     
    magman likes this.
  17. snail

    snail

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    Hi mekaeel

    im using fauna marin the bacteria and food
    its says 1 drop for every 100 liters and 4 drops of food for every 1 drop of bacteria
    when no3 dosing is every day for a week till the nirate is what u want it to be then
    dosing will be ones every 3 days till you get it ones a week.

    for the media i put 10% every one week till the bottle(1000ml) is finished, then do i leave the media for 3 months? or 3 months includes the 10% every week?
     
  18. snail

    snail

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    im using grotech media
     
  19. Mekaeel

    Mekaeel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Hi Snail!
    Im not familiar with the Fauna Marine range but I have used bot the original Zeovit system and the NeoZeo method.
    Once you have completed the loading phase of Zeolites, ie. adding 10% every week, you should change 25% of the Zeolites ever 6-8 weeks, Pretty straight forward.
    I suggest sticking to the Bacteria and food dosages and not alter it. Fauna Marine is more potent (stronger) than NeoZeo, it is very highly concentrated just like the original Zeovit.
     
  20. snail

    snail

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    Hi makaeel

    Thanks for the advice:)
     
  21. Mekaeel

    Mekaeel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Anytime dude! :)
     
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