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DenverDave
09/30/2008, 12:03 PM
Hi,

First off, I just want to say that you guys have provided excellent customer service to me, and I don't mean to sound like I am coming down on you guys, even if the following sounds that way. As you well understand, if I buy a product that claims to be "reef ready", I do expect parameters to be within an accpeptable range.

I bought a bucket of Reef Crystals from you guys in early August. I decided to test my most recent batch of make-up water mixed to 35 ppt and the magnesium tested at 950 ppm!

I called your customer service department yesterday and essentially was told that they had not heard of any other complaints, so it was proabably a measurement mistake on my part. I have heard about the possible influences for measurement error and am fairly confident that most of this extremely low value is reflective of a poor quality bucket of salt (magnesium wise) and not so much measurement error. (950 ppm is outside of the quoted allowable 10% errror). I also calibrated this test kit the same day with a known concentration of magnesium added to my display tank, and the test performed perfectly.

My question is threefold:

Why is Drs. Foster and Smith under the impression that I have been the only complaint concerning the magnesium issue when that is clearly not the case looking at previous threads in this forum?

Also, you guys are sending me another bucket (thank you!); however, after looking at this forum, I would not be surprised if the magnesium was again low. What would I do next?

I was told by customer service that the low magnesium was only an issue to bucekts sold before February- is there an explanation, thusfar, to the complaints in this forum?

Thanks again,
Dave

DFS/LA1
09/30/2008, 01:02 PM
DenverDave

Thank you for your post. We appreciate that you have contacted us with your concerns on the Reef Crystals and would like to extend our sincere apologies for any inconvenience that your recent Reef Crystal purchase with Drs Foster and Smith may have caused.

We would like to let you know that we are working very closely with Instant Ocean to ensure a high quality product, as well as testing every new supply that is shipped to our facility.

Instant Ocean Reef Crystals Salt is also used at our Aquaculture Facility in all of our salt water systems. We can assure you that we have not had any recent problems with this salt and are monitoring it closely.

There may be many different factors as to why the salt is testing incorrectly, such as inaccurate test kits, incorrect mixing of the salt, or moisture getting in to the salt bucket.

As you previously stated in your post; a replacement bucket of salt is being sent out to you at no additional charge. We would like to request that you contact us if there are any concerns regarding this bucket. I would also like to request, if possible, that you please send us a 2 cup salt sample from the previous bucket of salt. I would be glad to send you a prepaid return label to send us the samples of salt.

I would like to again apologize for any inconvenience and/or misinformation that was provided to you during your original call to our Customer Service Department. I would like to assure you that Drs Foster and Smith will continue to monitor these concerns and immediately address them, as satisfying our customers is very important to us. Please contact us back to confirm if the resolution provided to you is satisfactory. Our Customer Service phone number is 1-800-381-7179.

Thank you,

Jen S
Live Aquaria Supervisor
Drs Foster and Smith

DenverDave
10/01/2008, 08:33 AM
Jen (or to whom this may concern):

Thank you for your reply. Just to be sure, I went home yesteday afternoon and mixed a brand new batch of RC (same bucket) to 35ppt in RO/DI water and took 3 readings:

Calcium: 495 ppm
Magnesium 975 ppm
Carbonate Hardness: 11-11.5 dKH

Notice the magnesium- it's below 1000, again!

I want to take you up on your offer to mail you guys 2 cups of that salt. Should I call the number to give you my address so you can send the return postage?

Also, when I call, who do I ask for so that the conversation is continuous between this post and the phone call?

Thanks,
Dave

DFS/LA1
10/01/2008, 10:37 AM
DenverDave

Thank you for your reply. I would like to apologize that you are still receiving low magnesium readings on your current bucket of Reef Crystals. As previously offered; I would be glad to have a prepaid return label sent to you for the samples of salt from this bucket. If you would be able to PM us with your name and address information; our Technical Support Department will certainly get a label mailed out to you. If you prefer; you can also contact our Live Aquaria Department via phone at 1-800-334-3699 and one of our Live Aquaria agents will be glad to assist you with this. I will document all of this information on your customer file so that they are able to assist you directly if you decide to call.

Thank you,

Jen S
Live Aquaria Supervisor
Drs Foster and Smith

t5Nitro
10/20/2008, 03:56 PM
Good to know you're working with IO to get things straightened out. I don't have a Mg test kit, but I do know that every new batch of water I make with reef crystals the Ca is low (390ppm) and the alkalinity is high (13dKh or higher).

Keep in mind I bought these at the frag swap 2 years ago. Hopefully the salt now is getting better.