Mr. Saltwater Tank TV: Friday AM Quick Tip #1

Think mixing up saltwater is as easy as adding salt to water? Think again. If you miss this crucial step, you’ve missed a lot.

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Comments for this article (30)

  • John says:

    What do you recommend if the salt in the bucket is clumped or almost a solid block? I ask because I just got through chiseling out some.

  • John…well…keep chiseling man! You’ll want to break up all the salt back into powder form vs. clumps. It is probably clumping b/c it got wet, or it got exposed to moisture. How are you storing your salt?

  • John says:

    It was a brand new bucket I ordered. Now I’ve had this issue before. Maybe it’s a Tropic Marin thing.

  • John…I’m going to contact a Tropic Marin rep I know and see what I can find out. I’ll get back in touch with you once I know more.

  • John…I just got off the phone with Tropic Marin and they said that they had a bad run of salt. What you need to do is to take it to your retailer and ask for a replacement. Your retailer should then call Tropic Marin to check batch #’s to make the bucket(s) you had were bad.

  • John says:

    Mark….You are truly AWESOME! Thanks man. I unfortunately already used the entire bucket. I am in the process of setting up a 150 gallon tank with a 60 gallon sump. I’m using your site as my inspiration. I need another bucket though so I’ll remember this. Thanks again!

  • Wow! 60 gallon sump..I’m jealous!

  • Matt Allen says:

    Wow… looking back at that vid and I’m now remembering putting out my back getting a bit over the top with the mixing all those months ago… I’m a little bit more sensible about it now… 😉

    Must make you smile Mark reading the posts above… Now you’ve got the big tank… 😀

  • Murat says:

    Get well soon Mark !

  • Tony Viviano says:

    Not sure if this will work but here it goes. One can take the 5 gallon bucket to your local home imprvement store and have them mix the salt in the paint mixer. this may also be good for breaking up them clumps as well…. NOTE Swinging a 50LBS bucket of salt! Do it safely!!. Good tip Mark!!

  • Matt Allen says:

    I’d be rather concerned about what’s been in on and around the machine (paint obviously but you get the idea)… You really, really wouldn’t want ANY bits of paint in your salt mix…. best to do it at home the hard way I’d have thought… 🙂

    Ten out of ten for ingenuity though… makes you wonder how the salt makers mix the salt in the factory… I imagine your not a million miles away… 😉

  • Steve says:

    As always a good tip, I was unaware that the salt mixture was like that, I will be following this tip from now on. Where were you twenty years ago when I started up, my tank has bloomed since I found you, now I moved on from a dabbler to a reef enthusiast.
    I have sent you link to all my friends now so they have now excuses,
    Keep up the great work, thanks a million

  • I don’t think they’d crack the lid Matt! Just bring it in sealed and let them shake away!

  • Tony…not a bad idea! I wonder if they’d go for it! And if the bucket went flying, there would be one heck of a mess in the paint isle! “Massive cleanup in paint area…massive cleanup in paint area…”

  • Matt says:

    Ahhhh…. I think this is a big pond divide thing… Our shakers only go up to a certain size… might fit a smaller ones… the mixers (stirrers you might call them) go bigger… I think I go the wrong end of the salty stick there… 😉

    Massive salt sale if it was in the UK… They don’t miss a trick here… buy a spade and bring it to the paint isle for huge discounts on yard salt…

  • Doug says:

    Take care of yourself, your fish need you at 100% 🙂

  • Doug…thanks! That’s funny!

  • Hey Mark,

    Thanks for the tips. . . I just found you and am getting to know my future tank’s personality. Your advice is down to earth, sensible, and appreciated.

    Get well soon,


  • Bobby Thom says:

    you forgot to disable comments on youtube!

    You can get a metal spiral paint mixer that attaches to the end of your drill for like 5 bucks. They have them at Home Cheapo also but there a little more expensive.

  • Matt says:

    Bobby… that’s a bloody good idea! I mean as long as the salt stays in the bucket (which it hopefully should if you pay attention) that’d do the trick nicely! Top marks that man!

  • Tony Viviano says:

    Thanks guys . It was a long shot of an idea but i just came to me at 5 AM: after waching Mark’s tip…. Do what you feel is best for mixing your salt, am I taking my salt to home cheapo? NO! its just an idea. I know us saltwater guys are very careful with what goes or gets near the RO/DI water or salt mix. On a good NOTE! I got a Yellow Tang my new fish for this month. I have learnd alot from you Mark Thanks man…. Clean up in the paint isle!!!!!
    hahaha funny!!!!

  • Matt says:

    Totally agree with that statement… we are really careful (or at least should be) and I fancy the salt shaker idea… I also like the idea of locking my RO/DI unit away to stop my son from trying to play with the valves and coloured pipes! lol

    Fancy sharing a picture of you new fish on Marks facebook page Tony?

  • Monique says:

    Mark I hope you get well soon.

  • Tony Viviano says:

    Get well Mark!
    I need more tips…. I am still new in this Saltwater hobby 1.5 years, I have had fresh water for 10 to 15 years

  • Michael says:

    Hey Mark. Love your vids and your site. Really great stuff! My first question is do you keep a powerhead in your RO/DI water can? Which powerhead do you use for mixing the saltwater? I think I want to put a bigger one in my 20 gallon can. I am currently using the Maxijet400.

  • Tony Viviano says:

    On Ebay I found some power head’s you get 2 power head’s for 45.00 bucks and free shipping, they are 1200GPH so they say but all & all not a bad deal. They are magnetic mount also. I have 2 in my 55 gallon drum for RODI water and they realy move the water and mix it well, I would say DON’T spen big bucks on a good power head if it to mix you salt in you RODI water I have 2 of these in my tank as well. NOTE!!!!! if you turn them off and turn back on they may start backwards so use caution!!!!!!!! HAPPY TANK HAPPY FISH~~~~~~~~~~~~~>)))))))):>

  • Michael…no reason to keep a powerhead in your RODI storage can.

    For mixing saltwater, I use a koralia nano as it fits down the spout of my 5 gallon mixing jug.

  • Denny Rust says:

    I am about to set up my first saltwater tank and I am doing everything exactly how you suggest in the book. I was recently advised that there has been a recall on the reef crystals. Is this true? Is there a different salt you prefer to use as a substitute?

  • I haven’t heard anything about a reef crystals recall…can you post a link to more info?

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