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Dodging the Bullet December 28, 2005

Posted by samwyse in Marine Aquaria.
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Holy cow!

I checked everything last night just before going to bed, and it all seemed fine except the small air bubble in the syphon had grown a lot bigger while I was gone. This morning, I was resetting the timer for the lamps (from 12 hrs/day to 9) and decided to look at the SG before going to work. There was something odd about the way it was floating, but it took me a moment to realize that the water level in the tank was actually touching the glass tank covers! My wife and kids are still at the in-laws, so if I’d gone to work without checking I’d have come home to about ten gallons of water on the floor!

I killed the power to everything and about an inch of water syphoned out. Judging from the water level in the sump now, I suspect that most of that three gallons that I thought I was missing had just moved up the hill. Looking back, I had thought that three gallons seemed like a lot to lose to evaporation. Plus, I noticed that the floating hydrometer was just touching the plastic lid, but I’d assumed that it was due to the increased salt concentration. I’ll know better next time.

The “fabric” in the filter looks pretty dirty, so I guess it was restricting the water flow just enough to cause trouble. I’m going to leave everything powered down today, but tonight I’ll be replacing that filter, sucking the air out of the syphon again, and I guess adding some more salt since all that water I added seems to have depressed the SG a bit.

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