Someone told me this once: “When it comes to equipment, buy what you need at that moment. Don’t buy anything more.”
When it comes to reefkeeping, I disagree.
Instead, adopt this mindset: Find what you need, then buy ONE STEP UP. It’s called “Go Plus One”
Take the example of protein skimmers. These things are essential for any reef system. They remove wastes before they have a chance to decay in your tank. Decaying waste causes high nitrates and nuisance algae issues. Bad news.
Every protein skimmer is rated by its maker to be good up to a certain size of tank. For example, a Vertex IN-100 skimmer is rated for tanks 60-100 gallons. Assuming you had a 75G tank, if you adhered to the “only buy what you need” mentality, you’d buy this skimmer that is perfectly matched for your tank. That’s ok, but if you want to increase the diversity of your livestock you can have in the tank and save yourself some major headaches, go plus one.
If you went plus one, then you’d buy the next skimmer model up (using our Vertex example, the IN-180, rated for 100-180 G). The bigger skimmer would result in not only the ability to add more diverse corals to your tank, but more importantly, the ability to absorb any bumps in the road.
You’d be able to add in more SPS corals as you’d have better nutrient/waste export from the skimmer resulting in better water quality. Better water equals happier corals.
Also, if something goes wrong in the tank – a large fish dies that the clean up crew can’t handle – or your sand bed gets stirred up for some reason and releases lots of waste in your tank, then the bigger skimmer will pull the waste out faster so it has less of a chance to affect the tank. Bottom line – less headaches for you.
So go 1+ and expand your tank inhabitants and buy yourself some cheap insurance.
Note: always measure to make sure the bigger skimmer will fit in your sump!Browse the Store! Questions?