View Full Version : Tropical to Marine Conversion

01/23/2007, 07:53 AM
Hi Guys,

I have a freshwater fish tank set-up and wish to convert over to a reef aquarium. I was looking for some advice regarding the conversion. My first question is: can I still use the aquarium I've been using for my freshwater set-up and what measures should I take to ensure that it is cleaned properly? I was also planning on using the two Eheim thermofilters the I have been using in my freshwater set-up. If I change the filter medium, can I still use these filters?

Many thanks in advance for any suggestions or help given.


01/23/2007, 09:11 AM
As long as your tank is still water tight there will be no problem with the switch. Usually the main 2 upgrades that are needed for FW to SW are 1) more flow (powerheads) and 2) more lighting (mainly if trying corals)
I'm not too familiar with the thermofilter, but I would suspect that they will work fine for filtering.

What size is your tank?

01/23/2007, 09:22 AM
Thanks. It's a 48'' x 25'' x 20'' tank. What are my options when it comes to lighting? I'm trying to avoid suspending lights from the ceiling. I currently have a fairly deep hood which houses 5 42" tubes. The main objective is to keep soft corals, fish, and hopefully an anemone (or two). :)

01/23/2007, 10:07 AM
You should be able to use the tank with no problem. I would runn the tank and filters with some vinegar/water solution to clean things.

If you have ever used copper in the tank it would be wise to run some copper absorbing media to make sure you get the copper out.

If you go full reef with plenty of LR you do not need any sort of external canister filters, your LR and the addition of a skimmer is plenty of filtration.

01/23/2007, 10:36 AM
Agree, copper would be the main concern.
And ditch the canisters.

01/23/2007, 02:02 PM
Thanks for the info guys, I'll ditch the canisters. Do you think 30kg of LR will suffice?

I'm also intrigued by the vinegar/water combo to clean the tank, will this harm the system in any way? What concentration vinegar would you use dwculp to clean things out?

Never used copper so thats a big plus!

I was also wondering if I could get away with using T5 lighting to keep the corals, etc. given that the depth of the tank is 25". My hood will house around 5 tubes. Cheers:)

01/23/2007, 02:08 PM
I mix vinegar and water at 25% - 50% vinegar, thats a bit strong for most people though. It will help clean any hard water deposits and kill anything that is not suposed to be there.

That light will be sufficient for most low-med light corals.

01/23/2007, 02:27 PM
If I'm able to get 5 T5 lights in the hood, what light combination would you use? 3 White, 2 Blue? Thanks

01/23/2007, 02:39 PM
That would be a good place to start with the lights. And should give you plenty of Lumens down at the bottom.
As for the copper suggestion, please note that you should avoid using tap water if it comes through copper pipes. Consider installing a reverse osmosis / deionization (RO/DI) unit or purchasing RO/DI water from a supplier. You wouldn't believe the stuff that comes out of your tap. Good enough for you and your family, not good enough for your reef inhabitants.