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Old 03-16-2010, 12:06 AM   #1
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Simple question about water prep for a PWC

How important is the water prep for a change. I hear about people heating and airating or whatever before hand. I only have a 10 gallon tank but all i do is mix a gallon of spring water to the right salinity in a 5 gallon bucket and slowly dump it in. Water is prob 73-75 degrees when it goes into my 77 degree tank. LFS never said anything about the prep that I see people talk about on here. I have a FOWLR with 1 damsel and 1 baby snowflake and janitors . I am in the process of moving to a 75 gallon.
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Old 03-16-2010, 12:39 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Hinds04 View Post
How important is the water prep for a change. I hear about people heating and airating or whatever before hand. I only have a 10 gallon tank but all i do is mix a gallon of spring water to the right salinity in a 5 gallon bucket and slowly dump it in. Water is prob 73-75 degrees when it goes into my 77 degree tank. LFS never said anything about the prep that I see people talk about on here. I have a FOWLR with 1 damsel and 1 baby snowflake and janitors . I am in the process of moving to a 75 gallon.
In a perfect world you want your water to exactly match your tank. The closer you can get it the better. I would definatly mix the water the night before and if possible leave a powerhead running in it. as far as temperature goes...how does it feel when you are takeing a nice warm shower and the hot water runs out...you get the picture
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Old 03-16-2010, 12:55 AM   #3
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The importance of adequate mixing/settling time is going to be different for different people. It all depends on how stable you want to keep your tank. But you can do a little experiment yourself to see that all the advice isn't just hot air...

Take your spring water/salt mix in your 5 gallon bucket right after you mix it up, and measure the salinity, the pH, calcium, and alkalinity. Now drop a heater and powerhead in the same bucket and run it for 24 hours and do the same test. Your reading will most likely be different that your first set. That's why people recommend letting your saltwater "rest" a bit before using.

It really all depends on how much of a water change you're doing. If you're doing a 10% change, matching the parameters probably isn't that important. But if you're doing a 20-25% change, then obviously those numbers can make a big difference, really quick.
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Old 03-17-2010, 05:52 AM   #4
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How much live rock should I have in the tank to start the cycling process. I just started a 20 gallon. I have water, sand, and a heater. Getting LR and a bottle of bacteria today. I dont want to buy a bunch of LR right off the bat as I will be letting the tank sit until its good and ready.
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Old 03-18-2010, 08:38 AM   #5
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so it is the 75 gallon sitting empty? put as much or as little LR as you want. make sure there is an ammonia source.

as far as the salt water, i have heard that there is a chemical reaction as the salts dissolve. and what type of minerals do you have in your spring water? spring isnt distilled or filtered.
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Old 03-18-2010, 09:21 AM   #6
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Spring water is great for humans (depeding on the spring) but not so great for sw tanks. Get distilled or RODI water to mix with the salt. Many salt mixes are desigined to be used with RODI water.

Recommended level of LR are 1Ĺ - 2 pounds of LR per gallon of tank capacity. It depends on if you are getting the light airy Pacific coral LR or the dense Caribbean LR.

SW should be aerated using a power head at least overnight. There are many (70+) minerals in a SW mix. Some of them interact when fist mixed. Calcium chloride gets very hot when mixed with water. So it's best to let the SW stabilize before using. That would be "best Practice".
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Old 03-18-2010, 09:30 AM   #7
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And consider doing a more natural cycle instead of adding the "bottle of bacteria". Check out our articles section on cycling with raw shrimp.
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