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Useful Information & Documents


Reefkeepers need to keep track of many measurements in their aquaria. The most important of these include temperature, salinity (or specific gravity), calcium and alkalinity. Just as important as the actual values, however, are the units of measurement involved. Is an alkalinity of five a "good" value for a reef aquarium? The answer, obviously, depends on the units of measure. An alkalinity of 5 meq/L is on the high side, while an alkalinity of 5 dKH is on the low side. Even more confusing to aquarists are test kits that report results in unusual units. The Hach kit that reveals the magnesium concentration in units of ppm calcium carbonate equivalents probably takes the prize in the "dubious units" contest.


Water changes are, by definition, the act of replacing some aquarium water with "new" water. For various reasons, the ways to perform them and their importance are both a matter of some debate and confusion in the world of reef aquaria. Many aquarists perform them extensively, and others never do them. For those who do, the reasons vary and are sometimes even at odds with one another; for example, replenishing "trace elements" and exporting built up "impurities," with the identities of these two being unclear and possibly overlapping.


Ozone has been used in reef aquaria for many years. It is claimed to have many benefits, ranging from increased water clarity to decreased algae. It has never, however, risen in popularity to the point where a seeming majority of reef aquarists use it. Many reasons likely prevent its widespread use, including its cost, complexity and safety concerns for both the aquarist and the aquarium's inhabitants. Speaking only for myself, my reasons for never having used it in my first ten years of maintaining reef aquaria were driven primarily by concern over ozone byproducts' toxicity in the aquarium, and the lack of a perceived need.


Ozone is often used by reef aquarists to "purify" the water. To most aquarists that means making the water clearer, and it certainly does that in many cases. How to optimally accomplish that task without risking the aquarium inhabitants' or the aquarist's health, however, is not always obvious. This article is the second in a series that discuss the details of ozone and its use in reef aquaria:


Ozone is often used by reef aquarists to "purify" their tank's water. To most aquarists this means making the water visually clearer, so they elect to start using ozone to improve clarity. Not everyone notices such improvements, however, and some aquarists have been disappointed. What sort of changes can be expected upon initiating ozone?