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What Is the Best Temperature for a Coral Reef Tank?

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The ideal temperature for a coral reef tank is one essential factor. After doing thorough research about the best temperature for a coral reef tank, I can say I have the perfect answer for you.

The best temperature for corals in a reef tank is 77-79 degrees Fahrenheit or 25-26 degrees Celsius. A stable temperature is critical for the survival of coral so always install a quality heater and chiller. Also, you can use a thermometer to easily monitor the temperature of the reef tank.

The temperature a coral reef tank is set to is a delicate factor in ensuring the wellbeing of the corals. Turn it up to high or too low, and you might have a mass coral burial to do. You don’t want that and we definitely do not want that too. That is why we will tell you everything you need to know about the temperature of your coral reef tank.

Most Reef Keepers Keep Their Reef Tank at 78 Degrees Fahrenheit

A recent survey was carried out online among reef keepers. One of the questions asked was their ideal temperature for a reef. A greater percentage of these reef keepers chose 78 degrees Fahrenheit. The minority were dancing around this figure. The reason why most of these reef keepers stick with this temperature is simple: it works. So if you want to keep your own little under the sea Kingdom, then this is the way to go.

What Happens When Your Reef Tank Is the Wrong Temperature?

The wellbeing and growth of your reef rises and falls on the temperature it is set to. While setting your reef tank to the right temperature will necessitate the right environment for the growth of the organisms in it, setting the tank to the wrong temperature would definitely have dire consequences. Let’s take an in-depth look at what could go wrong when your reef tank is set to the wrong temperature

It Can Affect The Growth Of The Corals

If the temperature of the reef tank continually fluctuates or is not set to the right values, it can stunt the growth of the organisms in your reef tank. The temperature is that important. An anomaly in the temperature of the tank can greatly affect the growth of the corals. You sure don’t want this to happen.

It Can Affect The Lifespan Of The Corals

The lifespan of corals in their natural habitat is rather amazing. Corals have been known to live up to 500 years in their natural habitat. People who rear corals claim that their corals have lived for decades and can even outlive them. However, if these organisms are not in a conducive environment (which would include the ideal temperature), there is a high possibility you might outlive them. Corals can die if they stay too long in unfavorable conditions. If it’s too high or too low for too long, then, a demise is imminent in your reef tank.

It Can Stop Regular Activities Like Mating

Nobody goes about life like all is well when it’s not. It’s no different for Corals. When the temperature in the tank is not conducive, it can affect their regular activities. An example is mating. When the temperature within the Reef tank is not conducive, it can affect the mating behavior of the corals as they might refuse to mate.

It Can Cause Bleaching In Corals

One of the reasons people keep corals is because they are beautiful. Corals are very colorful and can add spice to any place that houses them. However, their color can be affected by irregularities in the temperature in the reef tank. When the temperature is not conducive, corals can lose their color and look pale. This process is known as bleaching. While it might be reversible in some cases, there are times when it’s irreversible. The wrong temperature can cost you that much.

It Can Lead To The Death Of The Corals

The wrong temperature can affect your reef tank in a lot of ways, the worse being the death of the organisms in the tank. Keeping your corals in an unconducive temperature for too long can lead to their death, and that being untimely.

If you’re looking for more information on growing coral, check out my full guide that’ll tell you everything to get you started!

What Is Needed To Keep Your Coral Reef Tank At The Right Temperature?

While it’s one thing to decide to keep your reef tank at the ideal temperature, it’s another thing to know what you need to achieve that goal. For this to be possible, you would need the following:

Aquarium Heaters

There are times when the temperature of your reef tank would drop. In such moments, you would need a heater to warm the water in the reef tank.

Aquarium Chillers

If the temperature of your reef tank rises above expectation, then you would need a chiller to bring down the temperature to normal.


Knowing when to boost or drop the temperature of your reef tank is highly dependent on having a thermometer as this is the only device with which you can accurately measure the temperature of your reef tank.

What Factors Can Influence The Temperature Of Your Coral Reef Tank?

There are other factors that can affect the temperature of your reef tank. Knowing these factors can really help you in keeping your reef tank at the ideal temperature.


Sunlight is the primary source of temperature. The amount of heat that filters into your room will also reflect on your reef tank.

Room Temperature

The temperature of the room can greatly affect the temperature of your reef tank. If your room is usually hot, it would reflect on your reef tank and vice versa.


The weather in a place can also influence the temperature of your reef tank. In winter, for example, the temperature of your tank is more likely to drop than in summer.

Tank Size

The size of the tank also plays a role in the temperature change. If it’s a small tank, it would definitely get warm quicker than bigger tanks. This is because bigger tanks would contain more water which of course would require more time for a change in temperature to occur.

Tank Location

The location of a tank also matters. If you keep a tank close to the window, it is more likely to increase the temperature as there is more direct contact with sunlight.

Water Change

Water Change can also affect the temperature of the reef tank. This is why it is recommended to change the water in successions as opposed to once. It is also advisable to ensure that the temperature of the water is close to the temperature of the water in the reef tank.

Faulty Equipment

When the equipment used in the reef tank (heaters, chillers, and thermometer) are faulty, it can affect the temperature of the reef tank. A faulty thermometer would give faulty readings, a faulty heater would not do its job effectively. These can affect the temperature of the reef tank. It’s best to discontinue the use of faulty equipment if detected.

Best Practices For Managing The Temperature Of Your Coral Reef Tank

These are some sure practices that can help you maintain and manage the temperature of your coral reef tank properly. With these practices, you can be sure to do fine.

  • Ensure to continually monitor the temperature of the reef tank. This is the only way you can keep it at the ideal temperature
  • Keep the tank in the best suitable location in the house. You might have to try different locations until you find the ideal one. Also, different weather conditions may mean different locations.
  • Do not use faulty equipment. This can lead to a lot of anomalies. So you have to check your pieces of equipment regularly to ensure they are working fine. Should in case you discover a piece of equipment is faulty, discontinue use. You should repair or replace immediately.


Keeping the temperature of your reef tank at the ideal values is important for the survival and well-being of your corals. It’s the top secret to having a thriving coral reef tank. 

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