FAQ

BRStv Reef FAQs is a question and answer video series in which Ryan, our host, gives quick and honest answers to some of your most frequently asked questions on a wide variety of reef aquarium topics including nitrates, phosphates, protein skimmers, water changes, lighting, powerheads and so much more.
  1. How it works: Calcium reactors explained the easy way - Reef FAQs

    How it works: Calcium reactors explained the easy way - Reef FAQs

    We put together this easy to understand guide to explain how a calcium reactor works for what we feel is the highest percentage path to success. Once you understand these basics, it is easier to develop your own personal approach to suit your tank’s needs, available space and personal budget.
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  2. Reef lighting - The cheapest approach to lighting your saltwater tank | Reef FAQs

    Reef lighting - The cheapest approach to lighting your saltwater tank | Reef FAQs

    Choosing the most economical lighting option for your reef tank is not best approached by simply looking at the cost of the LED module, instead you want to find a way to avoid the endless cycle of upgrades and replacing failed equipment.
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  3. How much is a calcium reactor vs two part dosing. Is it worth putting on a reef tank? Reef FAQ

    How much is a calcium reactor vs two part dosing. Is it worth putting on a reef tank? Reef FAQ

    Deciding whether or not a calcium reactor is worth the cost is more complex than you might think. A variety of factors should be considered that are very specific to you and your aquarium. Ryan shares his thoughts about the advantages of using a calcium reactor and lays out the numbers in this weeks BRStv Reef FAQs.
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  4. Protein skimmer guide - Explaining what they do and how they work - Reef FAQ

    Protein skimmer guide - Explaining what they do and how they work - Reef FAQ

    A protein skimmer is considered by many to be one of the most beneficial components of your filtration system and understanding what they do and how they do it will help you make the best decision for your reef tank.
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  5. PAR meter rental: Setting your reef tank LED lighting schedule - Reef FAQs

    PAR meter rental: Setting your reef tank LED lighting schedule - Reef FAQs

    There is almost no other area in reefing where $50 can have as big of an impact on your tank as renting a PAR meter. Now that BRS offers a PAR rental service, you can get all of the benefits of setting up your LED lights with a PAR meter for a reasonable cost. For LED lights, the Apogee MQ-510 Full Spectrum Par Meter is the ideal option because it is tuned specifically for underwater use with LED light. The Apogee MQ-210 Quantum Meter is more appropriate for use with T5 and Metal Halide lighting. Using a PAR meter to set up your LED lights will benefit you in three major ways. 1. Ensure you are getting maximum performance from your high-end aquarium LED lights. Lets face it, quality LED lighting is not cheap and it is safe to assume all of us want to get the best performance possible. By guessing or relying on others you are leaving room for error and essentially wasting all of the money you spent on high-end LED lights for your reef tank.

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  6. Reef tank LED lighting: The best mounting height for your corals - Reef FAQs

    Reef tank LED lighting: The best mounting height for your corals - Reef FAQs

    Finding the right height to mount your reef tank lighting, specifically LED lights, can be confusing because the advice is often conflicting. The reason this gets a bit tricky is because every tank is different in size, shape, depth, what is in it, the lights themselves and how they are used. All of this will have an impact on finding the right mounting height for your LEDs. When it comes to mounting height, there is simply no one right answer. Thankfully, with the human eye and a bit of intuition from the facts we share with you today, you can find a near perfect mounting height for your individual tank and lighting solution quite easily. Intensity vs. distribution Mounting height does have an impact on PAR but the controllable nature of LEDs give you the power to adjust intensity to match your desired PAR value. Mounting height is more about spread and even distribution of light as opposed to PAR intensity. The higher you mount

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  7. How many LED modules? Selecting and spacing reef tank LED lighting options - Reef FAQs

    How many LED modules? Selecting and spacing reef tank LED lighting options - Reef FAQs

    LED manufacturers do not make clear recommendations for how many LED fixtures you need and how to space them over your tank. The reason is because when it comes to reef tank lighting, every tank is different and the recommendations they make are based on one very specific generic type of tank. We are going to split this up into two tank types that will cover 90% of reefers to help all of you understand exactly what you need to provide the best LED light coverage over your reef. We are also not going to specifically cover every single LED light available but that is ok because most all popular LED lights can be grouped in categories by wattage. LPS, Soft Corals, Polyps - medium to lower light demanding reef tanks This is the majority and also includes a true mixed reef tank that really only contains a few SPS corals. These types of tanks are just a lot easier to light and really what most of the general recommendations manufactures give are based on.

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  8. PAR & Reef Tank Lighting Schedules: What's the ideal program for LED aquarium lighting? - BRStv Reef FAQs

    PAR & Reef Tank Lighting Schedules: What's the ideal program for LED aquarium lighting? - BRStv Reef FAQs

    Slide and pray is becoming a tired story about reefers trying to find the right PAR values and reef tank lighting schedule. The proven results with simple plug and play T5 and metal halide lighting is a thing of the past because the high-powered LED lights of modern reefkeeping gives users complete control over intensity, photoperiod and spectrum. In our latest Reef FAQs videos we set out to show all of you our best tips and tricks for setting LED lights for success without investing in really expensive meters or going through the pains of costly trial and error. In this episode we approach PAR or intensity as well as photoperiod to help you dial in the right amount of light for your tank. Here’s the facts The intensity sliders ranging from 0-100% are a popular option used by manufacturers to give users control over LED light spectrum and intensity. These slider percentages really mean nothing in terms of actual measurement of intensity/PAR or

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  9. PUR vs PAR? What is more important when setting up your LED reef tank lighting? - BRStv Reef FAQs

    PUR vs PAR? What is more important when setting up your LED reef tank lighting? - BRStv Reef FAQs

    PAR VS. PUR. At First it was as simple as the number of bulbs we needed then someone measured PAR and told us that was the holy grail and we all need to set our LED’s to a PAR number. Now, we all hear about PUR and that it is a better measurement for aquarium light output. Here’s the facts The difference between the two measurements of light is subtle in the name. PAR is the number one way we measure the intensity of our lights and that is generally accurate for reef aquarium purposes. The thing is it will pick up and measure some wavelengths of light that are not valuable to our application of growing corals. So it is a good but less than perfect tool for measuring and adjusting lights. This is where PUR comes in which measures the light wavelengths that corals are capable of using and excludes some of the unusable spectrum that a PAR meter will measure. Why not use a PUR meter? The answer is clear, because there

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  10. Reef tank pH: When should I calibrate my pH probe for an aquarium pH monitor or controller? - BRStv Reef FAQs

    Reef tank pH: When should I calibrate my pH probe for an aquarium pH monitor or controller? - BRStv Reef FAQs

    Calibrating your pH probe is an inexpensive and fairly quick process and the general best practice is to check the probes against a 1$ packet of pH calibration solution on a regular basis. The exact frequency at which you perform the check can be determined based on the application. During these probe checks, if you find the pH probe is not acceptably close to the standard solution, than the calibration process should be performed. If the probe is reading accurately, there is no need to calibrate and you can move on. Both 7pH and 10pH calibration solution will work for reference, but 7pH solution is probably best for monthly checks because it is closer to the 8.0pH range most probes will be used to read. You could check against both 7pH and 10pH every time, but that may be a little redundant because the accuracy can easily identified using a single reference solution. If using the probe to control equipment such as a calcium reactor, refugium

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