Salt content Question (newbie)
How much salt per gallon?
thanks in advance?
I find that about two cups of aquarium salt in a 5 gallon bucket gets me roughly the 1.022 - 1.023 specific gravity many people recommend.
I have reef tanks, and I keep them at 1.025 - 1.026. To achieve that SG, I mix 1/2 cup of salt per gallon of water.
While general rules of thumb are nice, the real answer is to use a hydrometer to test the specific gravity. You should aim for 1.023 to 1.025, depending on the livestock you plan to keep.
With my salt mix, I use 1 1/2 cups of salt for a 4 gallon water mix. It varies by brand and water temperature. Start with a low dose, then test. Add more salt as necessary. After a few trial runs you will have it down to a quick measure.
Also, if you mix your original batch of salt in the actual aquarium, realize that it may take 24 to 48 hours for the salt to dissolve completely and achieve an accurate reading. The specific gravity will rise as the salt dissolves further.
I allow my water to mix in a bucket overnight, using a power head to mix the salt well, prior to measuring. Also be sure to test the pH of your salt water mix prior to use and have a buffer available if needed to raise the pH / DKH.
If I may, I would like to point out the fact that reef recommendations are to strive for a salinity very near that of natural seawater, 35 ppt or an SG of 1.0264. Lower levels are reported to be better for fish-only systems.
I will also recommend use of a Refractometer over a Hydrometer. They are far more accurate, easier to use, less dependent on water temperature, and easier to keep clean.
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