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Large water changes (> 50%) OK on regular basis?

Discussion in 'Are you new to aquatic plants? Start here' started by Doc7, Nov 17, 2011.

  1. Doc7

    Doc7 Member

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    If I do my WCs down to my filter inlet, with space taken up by wood and substrate I am realizing I might be doing 75-80% of the tanks water volume on a weekly basis.

    Is there any harm from this or am I somehow "holding back" the ecosystem from developing by doing this?

    I do dose EI.
     
  2. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    Absolutely and Indubitably

    Hi,


    There really is not a problem with very large water changes. :)

    I use them all the time in especially with some of the bigger critters. :D

    Generally, we can change 80% plus water every other day in established systems, every day in non-established or non-filtered systems.


    In some cases, I change more than 100% of the water.:eek::rolleyes:


    Very large water changes are also a method of


    • adding CO[SUB]2[/SUB] in non-CO[SUB]2[/SUB] systems,
    • adding O[SUB]2,[/SUB]
    • keeping more densely populated tanks,
    • very heavy fertilizer dosing,
    • overfeeding so critters that would not be able to compete are fed.
    It is better to change more water than necessary than too little water.:cool:


    Biollante
     
  3. tjbuege

    tjbuege Lifetime Charter Member
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    Errr.... what? Ok, you have piqued my curiousity... Define "more than 100% of the water". :)
     
  4. Doc7

    Doc7 Member

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    Think he changes out 50-75%. refills and does it again...

    which technically would be > 100% of the volume but that infinite dilution problem rears it's little head :p
     
  5. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    Okay So I Cheat, What Part of Evil Don't You Get

    Hi,

    Doc7 got it in one.:D

    The infinite dilution problem actually works in our favor since we really do not want to sanitize anything.;)



    We pull 80 or 90% of the water out and add back or as we add water back and remove another 30-50%.:)


    A trick mainly for really messy eaters.:cool:



    Biollante
     
  6. tjbuege

    tjbuege Lifetime Charter Member
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    Ok, that's what I figured you probably meant. But you set the bait out there, and I couldn't resist biting. I enjoy your unique way of imparting information. :)
     
  7. 2wheelsx2

    2wheelsx2 Lifetime Members
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    I do 75% water changes 4x a week in my planted discus tank as between them, all my catfish and almond leaf litter, it gets messed up fast. The fish and plants and never looked better. I use a QuietOne 3000 pump hooked to a safety siphon fashioned after a Jehmco one and a hose to remove 50 gallons or so in 5 - 7 minutes. Filling takes 20 though. :(
     
  8. tjbuege

    tjbuege Lifetime Charter Member
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    Hi 2wheelsx2,

    Can you elaborate on the safety siphon you use, with possible pictures? I have nothing as large as your tank sounds, but I'm planning something bigger, and am interesting is picking up the pace with my water changes. I'm just using a python right, and wasting water to drain the tanks.
     
  9. 2wheelsx2

    2wheelsx2 Lifetime Members
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  10. tjbuege

    tjbuege Lifetime Charter Member
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    I see. So "safey" simply means the pump is placed at the level where you want to stop draining the tank. That seems simple enough to do. A nice small evening project. :)
     
  11. 2wheelsx2

    2wheelsx2 Lifetime Members
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    Yup, doesn't drain your tank to the substrate. :D
     
  12. tjbuege

    tjbuege Lifetime Charter Member
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    Biollante might want that feature added for his 100%+ water changes. ;) (all in good fun, I hope)
     
  13. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    I Love Automation, I Love The 21st Century

    Hi Tim,

    In fact, I use automated systems; I could not possibly handle all the demands without automation.:D These days many of the tanks are on a single system that is a fairly sophisticated water treatment and recycling system. We have always worked to use and reuse the water as much as possible so much of our water moves to hydroponic or landscaping use.


    Many years ago, I started automating, in fact, I used a do-it-yourself version of this, actually a good bit easier to build than it appears,:) I cannot locate the plans now, but I know they are out there somewhere.:confused:


    Always use gravity as much as you can and never trust anything but the laws of physics to be failure proof.:rolleyes:


    Almost all of my tanks are drilled one way or another and “water-on-the-floor,”:eek: (a measurement we use as “worst case”) and what are we going to do about it gets a lot of thought. :rolleyes:


    We use the term “tank” loosely as most are plywood and glass or acrylic and some are pools or ponds.:)



    In most cases, we plumb the water, drains, CO[SUB]2[/SUB] to or nearby the tanks.:cool:


    Biollante
     
    #13 Biollante, Nov 17, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 17, 2011
  14. Doc7

    Doc7 Member

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    Now that the "Safety siphon" comes up, i built this a couple days ago, based on other similar ones i saw on the net - it's set to suck water down right to the top of filter inlet (which is what spurred this post in the first place) ... darn cat managed to sneak into BOTH of these pics lol

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  15. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    [​IMG]

    WE USED THIS SAME THING WITH VALVE 35 YEARS AGO AT A LFS.
     
  16. Doc7

    Doc7 Member

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    Tom - it is actually a post of yours showing the siphon that rolled around in my head for several months before getting around to building mine!

    Sent from my BlackBerry 9650 using Tapatalk
     
  17. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Faster an cheaper than the Python, but those ain't bad either, anything is better than a bucket.
     
  18. tjbuege

    tjbuege Lifetime Charter Member
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    Tom, That looks really interesting. I have a couple questions:

    1. Where'd those black filter strainer pieces come from? I'm assuming not the hardware store.
    2. Do you have a pump at the other end of the hose to pull the water out, or do you use gravity? If gravity, how do you get the water started?
    3. To fill the tank, you just hook the other end to a faucet and turn it on? How do you control the water temperature coming out of such a long hose? any adjustments made at the faucet would take a while to show up at the output end.
     
  19. Doc7

    Doc7 Member

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    Not tom but - I suck on the end of mine for 2 seconds and stick it in the tub to drain. I use a water bed pump to my kitchen faucet to refill. I get the water to between 70-80 and don't worry much about it, the substrate and decor in the tank will retain the heat and average out the temp plus the heater goes on as soon as waters back in the tank.

    Water changes with cooler water have induced spawning in corydoras for me approx 24 hours post-change

    Sent from my BlackBerry 9650 using Tapatalk
     
  20. dundadundun

    dundadundun Junior Poster

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    i'm obviously not Tom...

    i'm not the tidiest of DIYers in all cases, but...
    [​IMG]

    1. i got my strainers at a LFS. the hidden reef. they carry all kinds of diy and plumbing supplies... at an inflated for hobbyists price of course. but nonetheless, it was only ~$4 for the both of them.
    2. connect hose... shove unit into tank submerging entirely including a little hose... crimp hose... pull out an hang without letting strainers out of water for more than an instant. gravity does the rest.
    3. you'd want a basin tub faucet and a hose diverter if you were going to match temps. connect the diverter to the faucet bib. close the output to the hose. open the remaining output. match the temp. open the output to the hose and close the other output. then pre-matched temp water makes it to the tank. ***i must say, though... i've yet to match the temp and only using cold water, i've not encountered any repercussions or negative reaction. the tank levels out in temp within the hour and life is back to normal. never skips a beat.***

    i do keep an eye on temps, fill slow if i think it's necessary ATM and return my heater to working order ASAP, though.

    total cost for me was ~$11. the pvc fittings are cheap (< $1 ea.) and short lengths of 3/4" pipe are cheap and easy to find. the strainers being from a LFS were ~$2 ea. and the brass FNPT to FHPT adapter was ~$6. all put together from what my local home depot stocks except the strainers. i did already have the 90s, the "T", the pipe, thread tape, primer, glue, pvc saw and sand paper, so those were considered free at the time.
     
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