7 Best Red Sea Reefer 250 Upgrades (Make This Tank Even Better)

There are many great saltwater aquarium kits on the market today and the Red Sea Reefer 250 is at the top of the list. 

Without a doubt, Red Sea has designed a very modern-looking and high-end aquarium for all saltwater hobbyists to enjoy.

If you haven’t seen the Red Sea Reefer tanks before, they are an all rimless glass, ultra-clear aquarium that includes a stylish cabinet and water management system including a sump and automatic top-off system. 

They are designed to be used by beginners or advanced hobbyists. They can be used as a basic saltwater setup or a full professional reef tank system.

One of the best features of all the Red Sea Reefer aquariums is they are upgradeable with other equipment and accessories which can make them even more efficient and better than they already are. 

Let’s look at some of the best upgrade options for the Red Sea Reefer 250. 

7 Best Red Sea Reefer 250 Upgrades

When you purchase the Red Sea Reefer 250 aquarium, it will include the following items. 

  • Tank
  • Cabinet
  • Sump with filter socks
  • Plumbing
  • Water management system
  • ATO
Image: Marine Depot

There are a few items that you can add to the system which will be very helpful and make things convenient for you. 

The first item is a necessary item that you will need to have as it is not included with the kit.

A return pump is an additional purchase that you will have to make.

If you already have a return pump for your Red Sea Reefer and looking to upgrade, here is my personal best choice for this tank.

#1. Ecotech Vectra S2 DC Pump

Red Sea recommends a return pump that produces 660 GPH. The Vectra S2 DC pump will provide that and more. It has a maximum flow rate of 1400 GPH with a maximum head pressure of 11.5 ft. If you are pumping water from your sump return section to your display with a height of 5 feet, you will be getting a flow rate of around 780 GPH which is more than suitable.

See the image below.

Image: Marine Depot
Flow Rate Image: Marine Depot

The Ecotech Vectra pumps are a well-known product that is designed for reliability. The flow patterns are fully controllable to your liking using the Ecotech Quiet Drive controller.

One of the biggest concerns people have with return pumps is noise. No one likes to hear a loud pump running in your sump. You won’t have to worry about that with the Vectra S2.

They are silent. 

They are also energy efficient and can save you money on your power bill. The new Vectra S2 models are Mobius ready and can be used with Bluetooth on your smart device. 

They will also connect with the Ecotech battery backup and can be a lifesaver in the event of a power outage. 

If you are looking to drastically improve your Red Sea Reefer 250 with an awesome return pump, I recommend the Ecotech Vectra S2 DC pump.

They are sold at an affordable price and you receive great value with these pumps.

#2. Cable management system – Controller board

If you want to keep your sump area inside the cabinet organized and looking neat, a controller board is a must. Anyone who has a Red Sea Reefer 250 wants to keep the “under the hood” looking as tidy as possible. 

Controller boards are the best way to keep your equipment organized. It makes things easier to monitor and you won’t need to guess which outlet something is plugged into. 

No more tangled mess of cords on the ground. 

Most controller boards fit nicely inside the cabinet of the Red Sea Reefer. There are different models available including standard and deluxe models. 

Controller boards

They are an affordable piece of equipment that makes a great addition for your tank.

I recommend the controller boards at Marine Depot. 

#3. Reef LED 50 lighting – Red Sea

If you are looking for lighting that is the perfect match for the Red Sea Reefer 250, the Reef LED 50 by Red Sea is the best option. 

These lights are designed specifically for coral coloration and optimum growth. They use a single LED array that focuses into the tank through an optical glass hollow lens. This reduces the heavy shimmer effect and reduces glare. 

Depending on the corals you keep, the best PAR range is between 90 and 550. The Reef LED 50 PAR rating when mounted 7” above the water surface is 500 at the surface and 100 at 19” below the water surface which is exactly what you are looking for. 

Image: Marine Depot

These lights are very modern looking and 2 of them will look great on the Red Sea Reefer 250. They are energy-efficient and affordable making them a great option. 

Image: Marine Depot

#4. Inkbird heater controller

One of the best ways to prevent a heater malfunction causing serious damage to your reef tank is to use a temperature controller. 

The Inkbird heater controller is one of the best purchases you can make for your tank. They are easy to set up and use and are not expensive. I use these on every tank I have. They are a lifesaver and the one time I didn’t have one, it ended up costing me a small fortune. 

You can read about my heater disaster here. 

You can easily plug these into your controller board or power bar and monitor the temperature of your tank. If your heater were to fail and stick into the on position, the controller will turn off the heater and prevent extreme water temperature which will certainly harm or kill your fish and corals. 

The Inkbird temperature controllers are available on Amazon here. 

#5. Bubble Magus Curve A5 Protein skimmer

A protein skimmer is a vital piece of equipment that is highly recommended. The Red Sea Reefer 250 requires an in-sump skimmer that is rated for at least 65 gallons. 

Protein skimmers can have many different features and prices depending on the brand and model you choose.  

The skimmer that I recommend for the Red Sea Reefer 250 is a very affordable option and is a staple in the hobby.

The Bubble Magus Curve 5 has been around for many years and continues to be a great choice by many.

It doesn’t have all the extras that you might see on a higher-end skimmer but they are a workhorse and will perform great. 

This skimmer can take some time to break in and become effective but once it is set up properly and through the break-in period, they will work perfectly. 

The Bubble Magus Curve 5 has been a top choice for me for years and it’s the one skimmer I can count on. 

The Curve A5 DC protein skimmer is even better.

Check out the Curve A5 protein skimmer on Marine Depot here.

#6. ADJ PC100 A Power bar

Once you have your Red Sea Reefer 250 all set up, there will be multiple pieces of equipment to plug in.

Instead of having extension cords running into different outlets, use the ADJ PC100 A power bar. 

I am currently using one of these on my Biocube 32 reef tank and my 120-gallon reef tank. They have 8 different 3 prong outlets that are all controlled by a rocker switch.

You can easily turn something on and off quickly by moving the switch. 

Another great feature of this power bar is the rocker switches are illuminated which makes it very easy to see at night.

It’s a great idea to label the switches so you know exactly what you are turning on or off at a quick glance.

This power bar can also be incorporated into a control board as mentioned above. I have been using these for a few years without any issues with them.

Check today’s price of the ADJ PC100 A power bar on Amazon here.

#7. Return line upgrade kit

If you want to upgrade the return flow of your Red Sea Reefer 250, check out this return line upgrade kit.

This is designed to work with the Red Sea Reefer aquariums and will give a more diverse flow pattern which covers a much larger area in your tank.

It includes the random flow generators which will redirect the constant flow patterns from your return pump into a more random pattern. 

The water will be dispersed throughout the tank instead of a constant directional flow pattern.

The optimal suggested flow rate is between 640-670+ GPH which matches the flow of the Red Sea Reefer 250 perfectly.

These kits are a very effective upgrade at a very affordable cost. They are more than worth it.

Check out the return line upgrade kits at Marine Depot here.


As you can see there are many great options available to upgrade the Red Sea reefer 250 aquarium kit. These are just a few of my top choices.

Any of the Reefer kits are amazing just as they are right out of the box but if you really want to turn it into a tank to impress, add one or more of these upgrades.

You will be glad that you did.