While these instructions have the same basic outline, this will focus on Saltwater Aquarium use.
Freshwater use instructions.
We recommend rinsing new AquaChar thoroughly before use; however, residual dust is not harmful to your aquarium and will settle inside your filter.
AquaChar can be used in a variety of filtration systems:
Simplest implementation of AquaChar is to place in a mesh bag, then placing the mesh bag in the final stage of cannister or sump filtration.
AquaChar will initially float but will sink as it adsorbs water and organics.
Recommended dosing is one (1) cup (~250mL) per 50 gallons (~200L) of water.
Every individual aquarium is a unique system, each user might desire different results. It is important to monitor your parameters whenever making any adjustments to see how your system responds
Recommended dosing works for most users but can be adjusted depending on your specific need and/or desired results. If you are looking for an alternative dosing to build up dosage to see how your system reacts.
AquaChar naturally buffers pH: AquaChar typically stabilizes pH between 8.0-8.4 in saltwater. Slowly increases pH over the first few weeks, typically finding stability between weeks 2-4. The relationship between CO2 and pH is a complicated on. Building up the amount of AquaChar over time as a biological media assists with finding this balance.
AquaChar works for several months: Effective useful life of AquaChar is typically 3-6+ months depending on bioload. When particles appear, add the new dose to existing AquaChar to increase the size of your waste management system!
AquaChar can replace bio-media: Once the initial chemical filtration reaction is exhausted AquaChar can be used like “live rock that is easily cleaned” allowing it to replace ceramics and be used to jump start new aquariums.
AquaChar has a negative ionic charge: The cause of most water clarity issues is Dissolved Organics - which are positively charged. AquaChar magnetically attracts fine particulates, creating crystal clear water within hours.This creates a smorgasbord: The natural substructure of the fiber and
vascular system of trees is preserved in AquaChar. Creating massive surface area for the internal and external colonization of bacteria.
Which creates a “waste management system”: The larger size and internal porosity creates a biological microsite for aerobic & anaerobic bacteria to break down organics efficiently. A more on demand consumption of organics stabilizes ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates.
Extends time between glass cleaning: Slow-released hydroxides combine with adsorption of free-floating algae reduces time it takes for algae to re-establish on interior surfaces.
Performing monthly maintenance on AquaChar offers a limited regenerative effect that maximizes the effective lifespan. Briefly rinse excess organics off the surface using aquarium water, return AquaChar to your system.
READ AQUACHAR REVIEWS
CAN AQUACHAR BE RUN WITH ACTIVATED CARBON?
Yes, AquaChar is a complementary product to short-term use of activated charcoal including those with resins to perform desired functions. When making changes to your aquarium, it is important to do so slowly to see how your system reacts. Measure impact on parameters. Overcorrection all at once usually does not end well, knowing how changes impact your aquarium is key to long term stability.
WHICH IS BETTER: BAG OR REACTOR?
Using AquaChar in a reactor is the best way to control the flow rate across the media and achieve the desired results for your specific system; optimizing the flow rate for your system increases the useful life of AquaChar. The ability to pull a mesh bag and easily rinse it makes the difference minimal at best.
When running AquaChar in a reactor it is best practice to use a reactor for fresh AquaChar and add the existing AquaChar to a mesh bag for long-term biological stability.
IS AQUACHAR SAFE?
Yes, you can read customer reviews using AquaChar with LPS, SPS, Zoas, Mushrooms, and many other types of corals. Additionally, with fewer dissolved organics in the water column fish often appear “happier” too.
Our earliest reviews were simply "my tank is so happy". It took us a while to realize that are the words for the moments of randomly getting lost in your aquarium without the worry of maintenance that needs to be done in the back of your mind!
As hobbyist ourselves we care about your pets as much as you!
CAN I OVERDOSE AQUACHAR? DOES IT CAUSE HLLD?
We have pushed the limits on dosing AquaChar to make sure there were not reactions in a biological environment that did not show up in lab testing. Before launch, we tested the impact on overdosing with many types of corals and fish with close monitoring. We also tested 5x the recommended dose of AquaChar on Tang tanks to watch for signs of HLLD.
NOTE FOR SPS TANKS: Because AquaChar is designed to establish balance, on rare occasions in well-established aquariums the re-adjustment can cause some discoloration with SPS corals during the adjustment period. This often occurs when more than the recommended dosage is used. For tanks with sensitive SPS corals we recommend starting with a small amount and adding small amounts every periodically to lengthen initial chemical filtration reaction while building the biological benefits.
CAN AQUACHAR REMOVE MEDICATIONS?
While not our primary function, AquaChar rapidly pulls medications and other contaminants from water in a pinch. We have received stories of accidental mishaps where AquaChar saved inhabitants.
Nothing has made us prouder of our product than receiving messages saying "I am thankful I had AquaChar on hand, I (my kids) did XYZ to my tank and thought I was going to lose everything. I added AquaChar and almost immediately things started looking better!"
For this reason we recommend keeping AquaChar on hand for these accidental emergency situations for the sake of your pets.
WHY AM I NOT SEEN AN INCRESE IN PH?
OH BUDDY! Where to begin? We are aware that this complicated topic and bold claim. While most see pH stability in the first week, it can sometimes take a couple weeks.
Some customers see the increase when an additional dose finds the balance.
If when adding AquaChar you do not see the pH adjustment you expect, it’s typically caused by excess CO2 build up from external factors that exceeds the slow-release capability. Typically, this is due to gas exchange caused by high turbulence, over-sized skimmer, lack of fresh air inside, etc. These can typically be fixed by right sizing the skimmer, putting the skimmer on a timer and/or running airline outside to provide fresh air.
Additionally, we have seen signs that internal CO2 build up in well-stocked, high consumption systems that appear to increase atmospheric CO2 in enclosed rooms and certain materials commonly use that acts as a buffer.
We cover the reason customers see a pH increase in THE AQUACHAR DIFFERENCE.
WILL USING AQUACHAR IMPACT ANY OTHER EQUIPMENT?
Typically no adjustments are needed when adding AquaChar for the first time. When using AquaChar in conjunction with a protein skimmer, some initial adjustment might be needed in order to prevent excessive nutrient export. We recommend running a protein skimmer less aggressively for at least the first 3-7 days, then make further adjustments, as necessary.
WHAT DOES AQUACHAR DO FOR MICROORGANISM POPULATIONS?
Simply put, PODS LOVE AQUACHAR! Just like bacteria love AquaChar because it delivers food, microorganisms love to eat biofilm with partially digested well fed bacteria.
DOES AQUACHAR HELP WITH HARMFUL AMMONIA AND NITRITES?
Yes, nitrifying bacteria on the surface AquaChar helps establish a balance while readily available hydroxides give them everything they need for conversion.
DOES AQUACHAR STRIP NITRATES AND PHOSPHATES CAUSING DINOFLAGILATES?
When adding new AquaChar there can be some stability in NO3 and PO4 primarily due to organic consumption from a rapidly growing biological population. For low-nutrient systems it is recommended to add smaller doses of AquaChar to measure the impact on your system.
Dinoflagellates is a defense mechanism in corals and zeroing of nutrients is usually a symptom the biological balance needs to be reestablished by dosing diversity and increasing inputs into the system.
Thank you for your support and interest in AquaChar!
Feel free to contact us with any additional questions!