Reef salt

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by Zero Gravitas, Mar 5, 2019.

  1. Zero Gravitas

    Zero Gravitas Supporting Member

    Looking for a good brand of reef salt that is not too expensive, any ideas?

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  2. Instant Ocean. Can be had form as low as $27.00 a box (200 gallons) a few times a year and it's very stable.
  3. Jeff Rehling

    Jeff Rehling Supporting Member

    i scored reef crystals at AC on New Years day for $27 for 200 gallons and it seems to keep my reef happy
  4. JVU


    Reef Crystals is time-proven, stable, consistent, doesn’t require additives to get to reef parameters, and is relatively inexpensive.
  5. I thought IO was at reef parameters and RC boosted Alk, Calc and Mag above that.
    Rostato likes this.
  6. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer Past President

    No Bruce. Instant ocean has high alk (11) and low ca(below 400). Not sure about mg. Probably low too.
    Reef crystals has proper ca(420ish)and mg 1250ish) with slightly elevated alk (9.5)
    This Is just what I’ve found. Could be different for others.
    Pretty sure @Ibn told me that instant ocean mixes at 11 alk for him but settles at like 8.3 or 8.? Something reliably after mixing awhile. I only checked fresh mix and dont actually use instant ocean so a little foggy. I do use reef crystal and those measurements were taken off a fresh mix, and alk was check a day later and didn’t drop much of at all.
  7. JVU


    Hmm, Bruce I think in theory you are correct, but I thought the consensus was that Reef Crystals is more consistent for the parameters that matter to coral. Really I don’t know if that is true or not.

    I did find this chart ( which supports what you said:


    The Alk does seem a bit high for RC in this chart, but of course it gets consumed pretty quickly. Now after decades of using RC and 5 min of online research I’m questioning myself lol.
  8. I remember that chart. I think that's why I decided not to use RC over IO (besides the cost.) I'd rather dose to desired Alk than to have my reef salt put me too close to a danger zone (depending on how often and how much you do in water changes.)

    In any case, it's a moot point these days since I don't do water changes in the big tanks.
  9. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer Past President

    That’s an interesting chart. Not what I’m seeing. Maybe my tests suck.
  10. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Saw Reef Crystals on sale at I think, also have a 30% off. not sure if that only covers nonsale items though
  11. grizfyrfyter

    grizfyrfyter Guest

    I use instant Ocean so there isn't an alk jump when I do a water change and it's cheaper.

    My trace elements suffer though.
  12. JVU


    The irony for me looking at that chart is that I got a big bag of Red Sea Coral Pro salt for free with my fish tank way back and haven’t used it because I thought the parameters were too aggressive compared to my normal Reef Crystals. If these numbers are to be believed, then I was totally wrong about that. Though I’m pretty sure when people test for themselves they don’t get that high of alk in RC.

    Although now like Bruce I’m using Triton method and not needing to do water changes too much. For the first several months I didn’t do any water changes. But I saw some corals not doing well and so I started doing them again and things improved. In fairness, I also wasn’t sending in Triton ICP tests as often as you are supposed to, but I wasn’t seeing any major issues when I did.

    So now I’m doing like 15% once every month or 2, more if suggested by the Triton ICP result.

    Anyway, all of these salts mentioned are good, and IO is the cheapest, to answer the OP’s question.
  13. RandyC

    RandyC Supporting Member

    Reef crystals always mixed at around 11 dkh for me and was pretty inconsistent for me between batches for various parameters.

    By far my favorite salt mix now is Red Sea Blue bucket. Alk is at 8 and has been pretty consistent across batches. It also stays between 7-8 for over a week sitting in the bucket even when mixed or heated for extended periods of time.

    It does cost a little more than IO and RC when sale prices are considered, but at normal price, it's about the same because I did get more saltwater mixed out of a bucket than I did with a bucket of IO or RC.
    Rostato and Coral reefer like this.
  14. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer Past President

    It mixed really quickly for me too. Couldn’t get a good price on it in bulk tho.
  15. rygh

    rygh BOD

    I have used IO (regular) for a long time.
    Stable, but high Alk can sometimes cause precipitation.

    Red Sea (standard blue bucket) is my other favorite.
    Reasonable price, parameters are all pretty much dead on natural sea water.
    Mixes clean. But poor packaging in the 200G size. No individual 50G bags.

    I keep flip-flopping

    I am not a fan of premium salts.
  16. tankguy

    tankguy Supporting Member

    I’m back with reef crystals. Mixes quick.
  17. Zero Gravitas

    Zero Gravitas Supporting Member

    Thank you I will try these brands.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  18. Zumareef

    Zumareef Supporting Member

    Fritz Reef Pro is nice, not too high in Alk or Ca which is a big plus in my book; I always felt RC Alk was too high, like 11 when I used it.
    Rostato likes this.
  19. Rostato

    Rostato Supporting Member

    I like Red Sea blue as well. It’s mag is a bit lower than I like because it doesn’t leave room for error.

    I recently switched to the blue box of fritz. All parameters except alk are where I like them , but I’m going to run my tank at 9.5 and see what happens this year.

    Alk 9.5
    Mag 1440
    Cal 430

    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
  20. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer Past President

    Did you mix and use right away or store it? And if you store it does it drop alk?
    Rostato likes this.

Share This Page