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Old 12-15-2010, 09:39 AM   #11
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I`m one of those that think you should not use tap water. Esp. for a reef tank. I work for a large water municipality. I know what goes in there for clean drinking water. Our water is rated the third best in the country so it`s great water but for human consumption. The compounds added to make it clean are good for us humans but bad for our reefs. Things like nitrates, phosphates, flouride, chlorine and many heavy metals used to bring the dirt particles to the bottom. Not a very good recipe for our reef tanks. Maybe the initial fill might be OK but none after that. I`ve had my reef for almost 13 yrs now without a crash yet (knocking on wood) and I`d like to attribute some of the cause to filtering out all that stuff with my RO/DI. Just my opinion and experience.
This is really good to know! I have been researching on how to start my FOWLR 65g and I know that I'll be venturing into reef when the time is right. I like the idea of using tap for the initial tank fill and using RO thereafter. I'm thinking of investing into a RO unit but with the other costs of starting the tank it's a little out of reach right now.

What would you recommend for a procedure to treat the tap water for an initial fill? I have a 55g drum with power head and heater in my basement that I'm setting up now to help me start. I was going to fill that up with tap and mix in my salt to the correct salinity, add the heater and power head and wait until it gets up to temp. At that point I'll transport it to the tank. I'm going to be setting up the tank as the water heats up over the day or two it takes.
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Old 12-15-2010, 11:49 AM   #12
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If it's your first fill you might as well just mix and do all that in the tank, just so u don't have to move your drum around...
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Old 12-15-2010, 12:05 PM   #13
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I'm still working on my sump, should I just mix the water in the tank and not fill it up all the way and put a heater and power head in the tank for circulation until the sump is done? Then just add mixed water as needed? I keep thinking about mixing it in the tank as well just to keep from having to move 65g+ of water.
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Old 12-15-2010, 12:08 PM   #14
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dont forget to treat your tap water to remove chlorine, i use Prime water conditioner.
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Old 12-15-2010, 12:37 PM   #15
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for initial setup, u can mix it in your tank but not for water change....just asking, what kind of material the drum made from..??? in my country,drum made from the steel....
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Old 12-15-2010, 01:28 PM   #16
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If you actually have chlorine in your tap water it will dissipate in a few hours or less. If the municipality uses chloramine, that will not dissipate and needs to be treated. As Mike stated, municipal water supplies are highly treated. I also consider them unsuitable for a reef aquarium.
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Old 12-15-2010, 07:40 PM   #17
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I disagree with that statement, I have seen fantastic reef tanks using tap water. But it all depends on your tap water, and yes using RO/DI water will help a lot at keeping algea down but its not absolutely needed.
well, you are welcome to use whatever you like. however using RODI is best practice.

I know someone who smokes and doesn't have cancer.
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Old 12-15-2010, 08:06 PM   #18
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You can treat tap water all you want. It might remove Chlorine but it wont remove ammonia just lock it up so it`s not toxic. It also does not remove heavy metals from the water. They are still in there. Only an RO/DI will provide desired water for a reef.
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Old 12-15-2010, 08:10 PM   #19
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well, you are welcome to use whatever you like. however using RODI is best practice.

I know someone who smokes and doesn't have cancer.
I dont think the cancer comment has anything to do with it, i can see why people use RO/DI water but I dont think its 100% absolute must use all the time, lots of people can use tap water and treat it and still have a beautiful reefs thats all im saying.
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Old 12-15-2010, 08:16 PM   #20
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I dont believe that will happen. Your tank will look nice for awhile but eventually all that added heavy metals and ammonia and phosphates and other stuff that prime cant remove will eventually cause a tank crash. Many a time I`ve seen a tank crash happen and nobody knows why. When I ask and they say they use tap water I can pretty well guess. It has to add up sooner or later.
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