Equipment

DIY: Tool Maintenance

When you get into this hobby there are certain tools that go along with maintaining the aquarium system. Using the correct tools and keeping them in top shape will make you job easier. Unfortunately most tools are taken for granted…

The quest for improved pH levels: Heat/Energy Recovery Ventilators

PH is one of the most important parameters governing the growth and calcification of corals in the wild and in our reef tanks. However keeping aquarium pH water within a desirable range can be difficult with elevated indoor carbon dioxide…

First Impressions: CoralVue Hydros

Innovation is key for any industry to survive. As a product developer in the real world I can truly appreciate what it takes to bring a product to market. But as a 23 year hobbyist I have probably seen and…

Plan for an Accessible Saltwater Aquarium

There’s a lot to consider when planning a new saltwater aquarium system—where to site the tank in your home, what sort of livestock you’d like to keep, what equipment will serve your needs best, how to gaslight your significant other…

Diving into Underwater Cameras

This article is a bit of a departure from the typical reef aquarium topics I cover. Photography is a big part of Tidal Gardens, and sometimes we like to take the camera underwater. To do that, we need an underwater…

Aquarium Automation: The Theiling Rollermat and Other Web-Filtering Technologies

The problem For the longest time, I have been trying to lengthen the maintenance interval for the filter socks on my 450-gallon system, which currently clog every two days. I tried eliminating filter socks completely for a period of time,…

Salty Q&A: Why so Much Emphasis on Evaporation in Saltwater Systems?

Question I’m a long-time freshwater aquarium hobbyist but considering branching out to a saltwater reef system. In talking with some of my reefkeeper friends, I’ve noticed that they’re rather fixated on evaporation from their tanks and doing daily top-offs. Why…

An Introduction to Protein Skimming

A protein skimmer is a device designed to clean the water in a reef aquarium by removing dissolved organic compounds. Put even more simply, it is a controlled overflow of dirty water. Imagine a chamber that vigorously mixes air and…

Paul B’s Unique Perspective on Keeping Mandarins

Hobby pioneer Paul “Paul B” Baldassano is not your grandfather’s reefkeeper (though he is old enough to be your grandfather!). In fact, Paul B’s perspective on just about any aspect of the marine aquarium hobby is quite distinct from anyone…

Salty Confessions: Procrastination Never Pays in Reefkeeping!

Regular SWS readers know that CC and I always emphasize the importance of staying on top of routine maintenance chores so small problems don’t develop into big ones. Great advice for a hobby in which only bad things happen quickly,…