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Old 01-08-2005, 06:13 PM   #1
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Which requires more maintenance?

A 46 gallon freshwater tank or a 46 gallon saltwater tank?

I always heard saltwater was more of a bio cycle and required less maintenance. Obviously no vacuuming in a salt tank...any ideas?
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Old 01-08-2005, 07:47 PM   #2
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I would have to say saltwater needs more attention, and is for the more knowledgeable aquarists. You need to consider a few more factors such as salinity, keeping nitrates low, compatibility is a bit more complex, and it usually requires a larger system.
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Old 01-08-2005, 10:46 PM   #3
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I only ask because I think SW is more attractive and I might be more interested in keeping it clean. I have grown bored with my tetras and 10gal tank. FW seem to be to drab in coloring. SW I never seem to get tired of looking at.

Thanks for your input!
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Old 01-08-2005, 10:52 PM   #4
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I think both are about equal. SW takes more time to set up, and more precision, but when it is stable, it's stable. You still can vaccum a SW tank, yes. Salinity is important.

LR will cycle your tank. So once your LR is cured, ammonia is a 0, fish can be added soon after.

FW is easier to maintain, but if you have the time and patiece to put into a SW tank, then go for it. It's definitley a cool thing. I have both, and don't regret dabbling into SW at all. If you do things right, you'll be setting yourself up for a nice and easily maintainable tank.
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Old 01-09-2005, 02:57 AM   #5
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it really depends on the fish you get. I think clown fish or domino fish are extremely easy to take care of in a saltwater tank. Discus and some other freshwater fish can be hard to take care of if you don't know what you're doing.
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Old 01-09-2005, 03:15 AM   #6
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I have grown bored with my tetras and 10gal tank. FW seem to be to drab in coloring.
Then you need to met cichlids
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Old 01-09-2005, 03:39 AM   #7
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I have grown bored with my tetras and 10gal tank
Then you obviously haven't experienced other fish. There are ton's of colorful FW fish. With a 10 gallon you are limited in the different kinds of fish you can keep, so I am not surprised that you said that. I only keep a 10 gallon tank because of breeding purposes and for emergency purposes.

IMO, saltwater is definitely beautiful to look at, but a whole lot more expensive too.
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Old 01-09-2005, 04:06 AM   #8
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Saltwater by far takes alot more overall I think. Sure Specialty species of either FW or SW can take more than a general community tank. I have looked into salt water and they have alot more to their filter system its not your simple hang on the back and let it ride type deal. Also parameters have to be alot more accurate with SW tanks its easier for something to go wrong. Maybe I am wrong but I dont think there are many Salt Water people who just run water from the tap and change it once a week or so. One day I hope to own a SW tank but the $$ involved has kept me away so far.
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Old 01-09-2005, 01:53 PM   #9
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actually, my mom had a HOB filter with a sump underneath the tank and successfully had a beautiful saltwater tank including live rock, anemones, and a few nice fish (but not the really hard kinds). The only difference was it was way more expensive than freshwater.
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Old 01-09-2005, 02:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FancyGuppyGuy
Saltwater by far takes alot more overall I think. Sure Specialty species of either FW or SW can take more than a general community tank. I have looked into salt water and they have alot more to their filter system its not your simple hang on the back and let it ride type deal. Also parameters have to be alot more accurate with SW tanks its easier for something to go wrong. Maybe I am wrong but I dont think there are many Salt Water people who just run water from the tap and change it once a week or so. One day I hope to own a SW tank but the $$ involved has kept me away so far.
Agreed with rubysoho. I'm running two powerheads and a general HOB filter for my SW setup. SW filtration is more in the biological sense than FW is, and it took me forever to understand the power of beneficial bacteria in that sense...

The money is definitley a downside, but once it's all spent...it's worth it.

I agree with others in that you should look into different fish with FW too. Obviouslly you haven't dabbled into cichlids, rainbows, loaches, and many other species. I think the two can be just as beautiful as each other, but then...beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Keep looking around and researching, and you'll find something that piques your interests.
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Old 01-09-2005, 02:59 PM   #11
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talking of attractiveness...have a look at travis simonson's gallery...
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Old 01-09-2005, 04:13 PM   #12
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Do alot of SW fish have the ability to live in a wide range of PH 6.6-8.0?? Or does it have to be a certian ph like 8.2-8.3?? Also Is there a specific salinity involved?? or can we just through any ole amount of salt into the tank?? I have heard salt water fish do not like higher nitrate lvls where fresh water fish can handle nitrate alittle more is this true? What does a sump do exactly? when changing water in a salt water tank do you just get some tap water dechlorinate and add some salt??

Just a few questions I'd really like to know
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Old 01-09-2005, 05:18 PM   #13
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SW fish can live in a range of ph but a constant is best(mine is 8.2). There is also a range for salinity but once again a constant for the tank is best(mine 1.021). The amount of salt varies on brand. Nitrates are a problem in SW tanks, more for reef tanks but you still need to watch it with a FO setup. The fish can tolerate it as long as it does not get out of hand. The sump will increase your total water volume making it easier to stabilize the water parameters and it also gives you a place to hide equipment(heater, skimmer). You can use tap water but it will likely lead to algea problems as most tap water contains phosphates and nitrates(you can test your tap water to see).
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Old 01-09-2005, 06:49 PM   #14
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SW fish can live in a range of ph but a constant is best(mine is 8.2). There is also a range for salinity but once again a constant for the tank is best(mine 1.021). The amount of salt varies on brand. Nitrates are a problem in SW tanks, more for reef tanks but you still need to watch it with a FO setup. The fish can tolerate it as long as it does not get out of hand. The sump will increase your total water volume making it easier to stabilize the water parameters and it also gives you a place to hide equipment(heater, skimmer). You can use tap water but it will likely lead to algea problems as most tap water contains phosphates and nitrates(you can test your tap water to see).
SO in other words salt water requires more of a special type of parameters for the water. Does this mean more maintenance?? or just more testing of the water?? If you cant use tap water then how do they get water?? A sump is used in most sw tanks??
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Old 01-09-2005, 07:03 PM   #15
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i would say get diversity of complete different animal kingdoms, in mine i have fish and snails, and im looking into freshwater crustacions(spelling?)
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Old 01-09-2005, 07:13 PM   #16
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I had a fish only FW and SW side by side for a year or two. I had overstocked the FW, and understocked the SW. Both were pretty low maintenance as far as water quality. SW algae is incredibly fast growing with any kind of strong direct or indirect sunlight, but very easily seperates from glass. FW algae was much slower growing, but had to be scraped from the glass. SW livestock was expensive then, and I cringe when I price them now.

I thought long and hard when I started setting up my tanks after an absence from te hobby, and went with FW. Not because it was that much easier, but for the lower cost and ease that different fish can be stocked and fed. For my time and money, FW is more bang, but I sure do miss my clowns, tangs and starfish.
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Old 01-09-2005, 07:23 PM   #17
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Quote:
SW fish can live in a range of ph but a constant is best(mine is 8.2). There is also a range for salinity but once again a constant for the tank is best(mine 1.021).
An important thing to remember too is that the salt you use will bring your water up to the neccesary parameters. The major factor is salinity...but as soon as it's right, a freshwater top off is needed daily, and that is it.

I have a new RO unit becuase I have lots of phosphates in my water...a breeding groud for algae. All depends on the levels of your tap water FancyGuppyGuy.

A sump is not neccesary for SW tanks either...
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Old 01-09-2005, 08:45 PM   #18
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If you cant use tap water then how do they get water?? A sump is used in most sw tanks??
Sumps are very common, because you add volume to the system and can keep the tank appliances like the heater, protien skimmer in the sump. A sump is anything that holds water, old tanks being a logical choice if you have no use for them. Sumps were very popular for SW and reef tanks because you could easily make it a wet/dry biofilter, getting incredible NH3 and NO2 removal as well as oxygenation of the water, and SW holds less oxygen that FW? Sumps were so popular that for a while when shopping for a new tank you could tell you were in the SW section because they were all drilled and had overflow boxes.Of course, efficient NH3 conversion means lots of nitrates, and that is the enemy of a reef tank. Now comes the live rock method, and lots of people take out the wet/dry biofilter and just use the sump to put more live rock in. I have also heard of canister filters being used for live rock in a SW setup, but I havent followed SW for 3 years and can't say for sure.

For water changes and top ups, tap water kind off sucks. The phosphates in it make algae go wild. I never used a RO unit, I bought distilled water from a local water delivery company. After verifying that they didn't use copper to distill,and testing negative for copper, I never had a problem

Sumps work great for FW too! you could make your own wet/dry for just a few bucks and a submersible pump. I just wouldn't use one without a drilled tank with overflow boxes built in, because if you lose siphon out to the sump it keeps sending water into the tank till it floods. Overflow boxes are harder to make stop.

Thinking of adding a SW tank Guppyguy? Its not that hard, just more expensive livestock and the fish bioload must be a lot less for good results (i had a large yellow tang, two clowns, and a starfish in a 55 gallon tank.)if your tap water has too many phosphates, use the distilled or RO water that local companies can deliver inthe 5 gal bottles for about 6 bucks per 5 gallons. Thus a 10% change in a 50 gal setup costs you 6 bucks plus the cost of the salt to add. I never did a reef or live rock setup, just fish only.
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