In reefkeeping we all have seen our fair share of beneficial bacteria products, and now there is a new one to choose from: Vibrant Aquarium Cleanser by Underwater Creations Inc. This bacteria blend claims to brighten and clean aquariums in as little as 12 hours. Underwater Creations must have a lot of confidence with their new product considering this statement is printed on every bottle! I like confidence, so I had to get some for myself and write a review.

 

I’ll start with a quick background on how Vibrant has gone from being a secret cocktail to a product for the everyday aquarist. Vibrant was created by Underwater Creations Inc, a company whose main business is to build and tend to high end aquariums in Minnesota. Originally they created the product for their own use on clients’ aquariums, which soon lead to many people asking how they keep the aquariums so clean. So, they decided to create a product for the general public. The following is stated on their website: “After being asked so many times, we decided that we should share what we knew worked so well. So, we teamed up with a group of scientists and created a consumer based version of the same product, which we have simply named Vibrant.”

So, on what type of aquarium does vibrant work?

There are 3 different Vibrant products one for fresh water aquariums, salt water fish only, and for reef aquariums.

Dosing Vibrant?

All 3 formulas use the same dosing instructions and they are as follows: For a very well taken care of, clean aquarium, add 1ml of Vibrant per 10 gallons of aquarium water once every 2 weeks. For a dirtier aquarium, add 1ml of Vibrant per 10 gallons of aquarium water once per week. If you are battling Bryopsis or Turf algae, dose 1ml of Vibrant per 10 gallons of aquarium water two times per week. There is no need to discontinue the use of any filtration while using Vibrant. Vibrant is safe with all fish, corals and invertebrates. Vibrant works differently in every aquarium. Some people see almost instant results and some people will have to do multiple treatments for it to kick in and take over. If the first dose knocks it out, great! If not, follow the dosing schedule and sooner than later you will have a clean Vibrant tank.

So what’s in Vibrant?

On the bottle the ingredient list includes:

95% cultured bacteria

1%Amino Acids(Aspartic Acid)

0.5% Vinegar

3.5% RO/DI water

 

Vibrant effect on different species of algae?

Depending on what type of algae your battling the amount of doses requires is from 1-30. A list follows:

Cloudy/hazy Water- 1 dose
Diatoms – 1-2 doses
Cyanobacteria – 1-5 doses
Dinoflagellates – 2-5 doses
Bubble algae – 3-8 doses
Hair Algae – 3-5 doses
Turf Algae – 8-20 doses
Bryopsis – 6-30 doses

 

So how did it work for me and Reefnation?

The tank I’m testing this out on is my 120 gallon wide with a 40 breeder as a sump, my total volume of water is roughly 150 gallons. I use a reef octopus 8 inch for skimming and fuel the corals with a calcium reactor. My lighting is a combination metal halides and t5 and I do water changes with red sea salt. During this experiment I did 3 water changes in the 5 weeks of testing. I’ve been in the hobby for about 5 years now and have built a decent tank mainly populated with sps corals, although I do have some acans and a carpet anemone. The main algae I’ve battle in the recent years has been cyano it comes and goes as it pleases and seems not to have any relation with the amount of phosphate and nitrate in the tank. When I started Vibrant my entire back wall was covered in cyano. Unfortunately, I do not have a picture of when I stared dosing Vibrant. This is the 5th week of dosing 15ml on Thursday night and I have very little cyano left on the back wall. Although I do still have a lot on the rock work as well as the sand bed, which wasn’t there when I started dosing. Within the first 12 hours of dosing the only thing I noticed was bubbles forming on the algae all over my tank, so I knew something was going on. The one thing that seemed to be a drastic change was my bubble algae I used to have a lot of those little buggers all over my tank and today I can only count a few which is pretty cool because I’ve never found anything to take care of them.

As for the Reefnation frag tank the effects seem to be a bit better. The algae and fuzzy material all over the egg crate began to dissolve within 48 hours.

Vibrant Review Conclusion

Overall this experiment seems to be going in a positive direction. I will continue to does Vibrant until I use up this bottle, which is far from gone. I bought the 16 oz. bottle for about 30$. Since 1floz is about 29.6 ml, the bottle doses my tank for about 30 weeks. So a dollar a week is well within what I can afford. After the bottle runs out I’d like to see how the tank does without it for a few weeks. At that time, I will decide whether or not I’d like to buy another. As f or anyone interested in this product, I defiantly think it’s worth a try. Especially for anyone battling any type of algae problem, but remember this stuff isn’t a magic cure all. You still have to do water changes and keep your tank clean.