08-19-2011, 07:35 AM
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I don't think anything has been said yet about your water source, Christople. I made the mistake of using tap water when I first started out, and I paid for it for a long time. I could have saved myself a lot of the money I ended up spending on nitrate reducing media, phosphate reducing media, salt for water changes, etc., if I'd spent the money on an RO/DI unit in the first place.
Even the gallons of distilled Poland Spring I bought from the store when I finally quit tap water had some amount of phosphates as per my Hanna Instruments HI 713 phosphate checker. The cost of bottled water eventually ads up anyway, and it can be a pain to get enough bottles to perform a non negligible water change, so if you're serious about starting a reef and have some money to put toward it, you might consider picking up an RO/DI unit. I understand there are some pretty good prices to be had for them over on eBay, although I got mine from bulkreefsupply.com and am more than satisfied with it.