See my problem right now is that I am using tap water and aqua clear to remove some of the chemicals. How about if I used half NSW and tap water with IO salt mix? Does that sound like a better combination??
dermp, I would definitely use North Atlantic NSW if I had access to it. Get it from as far offshore as you can, and run it through some filter floss too. Ozone and UV are another good idea but not absolutely necessary.
Unless you can get NSW from a ways out I'd be worried about pollutants (lots of posts on that on this board). Also, I do know that people recommend against mixing saltwater made with different brands of salt - never heard of NSW and IO water but it seems to me that it would raise the same sort of concerns.
I know you've heard this about a billion times but it really is worth it to get an RO/DI unit - it'll save you a lot of heartache later **ducking from the annoyed thoughts/responses flying this way**
Yes your right I need a RO/DI unit can't afford one right now, put all my money into get the reef tank started up!! Where I am from we have many or I should say all coast lines where one can get seawater so there is no worries about it being contaminated. They are lots of places far away from any ports, docks or harbours!!
if i could, i would use NSW.. but, regardless of how clean looks on shore, i'd still try to get it as far off shore as possible. have a boat?
either way, even from shore, if it's not around any ports, it should be much better than your tap water is.
i wouldnt mix with homemade salt water though. i mean, you'll have to for starters, but i'd just use the nsw from now on.
run it through a poly filter at least. and check the levels on it. ie: ammonia, nitrite and ph. i would assume that you'll detect no amm. or nitr. you might also check the salinity level to see how it compares to what you are using now.
overall, you'll save money by not getting an ro, and you'll save by not needing to buy salt any more
fwiw, i have an uncle in tampa wiht a 250 gallon sw tank. he takes his boat out onto the gulf once a week and fills up a garbage can with water from the gulf, and uses that as his water change/top off water and so on.
he's had his tank up for about 5 years, and has never bought water or salt for it. but he does go out quite a ways for collecting, but that's cuz tampa bay aint the cleanest thing around
You would also think that the water up there where you live is cold. Heating it up could cause the organisms in the water to die off causing a cycle. I say go for it, but make sure it completly cycles before you put anything in it. JMO
Hey I think I will start trying it!! I am getting it from a spot where there is nothing but coast line and open sea for miles!! Its right on the edge of a cliff and is very deep I would say oh about 20-30 feet deep. So I will take a bucket 5 gallon and let it go almost to the bottom and then haul it up. What does that sound like to you guys!! So guys you think this is much safer than using tap water and adding conditioners to it???