View Full Version : Sodium Bicarbonate vs. Sodium Carbonate

01/31/2008, 07:44 PM
I heard recently that using Sodium Carbonate was better for the coral in some way that using Sodium Bicarbonate. Is there a difference? Which is better to use?


01/31/2008, 07:58 PM
Sodium carbonate will raise the pH when dosed, which can be useful. Baking soda doesn't affect the pH much. So one or the other might be appropriate for your setup. I use sodium bicarbonate, since my tanks' pH levels are fine as is.

02/01/2008, 11:09 AM
I don't know where you heard that John but we have heard it before and it is so much nonsense. The amount of either is dictated by the pH. Here is a visual aid from one of Randy's articles. Think of the "1.00" as being 100 %. So, at a pH of 9 it is ~ 50 % bicarbonate, ~ 50 % carbonate and about ~ zero CO2


02/01/2008, 02:41 PM
Thank you for clearing that up for me. I heard it from a LFS owner that I think was just trying to get me to purchase some B-Ionic. He said that B-Ionic was Sodium Carbonate and was better for the corals. I think he said something to the tune of being "less harsh". It kind of caught me by surprise because I had read Randy's numerous articles on the subject and have never seen anything that said that.

Randy Holmes-Farley
02/01/2008, 03:02 PM
FWIW, even ESV sells a bicarbonate version of B-ionic, but it is actually more expensive! :)