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How to Mix Saltwater For Saltwater Aquariums

Updated on November 21, 2013

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This hub will go over how to mix saltwater for saltwater aquariums.

The supplies you will need are:

  • Hydrometer or refractometer - both measure the level of salt ions present in freshwater
  • Submersible Heater
  • Large mixing container
  • Synthetic sea salt - Instant Ocean is cheap and dissolves thoroughly
  • Submersible Water pump
  • RO/DI reverse osmosis de-ionization water
  • dolly (rolling platform) optional

Mixing Instructions:

  1. Place large mixing container onto dolly (rolling platform) - the dolly is optional
  2. Pour RO/DI water into mixing container
  3. Add water pump to mixing container and turn water pump on
  4. Submerge heater in mixing container and set the temperature to 78 degrees
  5. Slowly pour synthetic sea salt into water and use the hydrometer until the salinity reads 1.025 on the reading scale
  6. Let the water mix for 24 hours so that Calcium, Alkalinity, Magnesium, and pH stabilize correctly

The next step is to add the newly mixed saltwater to your saltwater aquarium.

Adding Instructions:

  1. Turn off all aquarium pumps, return pump, wave maker, etc.
  2. Using a siphon, siphon out 20% of your aquarium water into a container
  3. Slowly pour the newly made saltwater to your aquarium
  4. Turn all your pumps back on again
  5. Always measure the salinity of your aquarium water after water changes and keep it between 1.025 - 1.026

Now that you know how to correctly mix fresh saltwater and add the freshly made saltwater to your saltwater aquarium, performing this maintenance once every week or every 2 weeks will keep your water quality perfect and your saltwater aquarium animals happy.

Benefits of Mixing Your Own Saltwater

  • You know that your RO/DI water is fully tested free of harmful tap-water chemicals
  • You don't need to test how much ppm is for each chemical
  • You don't have to worry about what's in the water you're adding to your saltwater aquarium that you obtained from an outside source
  • You don't have to waste gas and manpower getting the water from an outside source then bringing that water all the way home to your saltwater aquarium

What brand of salt do you use for your reef?

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