Water Changing?

Discussion in 'Water Changes' started by happygolucky, Jul 29, 2015.

  1. happygoluckyWell Known MemberMember

    Hi, I've been posting frequently because this seems like a great source of info for fish newbies such as myself, and I had a total newbie question about water changing. Whenever I have "changed water" in the past, it has included me taking out some water with my tank pump, and me adding some ~room temp. water along with water conditioner. It feels like there has to be something more to it, and if there is please tell me. What I plan to do from now on though, is take ~15% of the water out, put some new water in a pot I have (reserved for fish stuff), and add conditioner. Once the conditioner is finished with it's work, I'll just dump the water in. Good strategy or no? Also, should the water be at perfect temp., or is it ok to be slightly colder?
  2. Dom90Fishlore VIPMember

    15% isn't nearly enough. Depending on your bioload, you'll need to do between 25-50% weekly. Try to keep your nitrates between 20-40.

    Sent from my iPhone using Fish Lore Aquarium Fish Forum
  3. alinkWell Known MemberMember

    I would advise changing a little more than 15% weekly. I would say 30% minimum, maybe 50% once a month or so.

    When you do change the water, that is the time you remove poop and excess, move decorations around, fix/add/move plants, etc.

    To handle the first thing I mentioned, you have to do gravel vacs (if you have gravel substrate) by plunging your siphon into the gravel until it runs clear, then move an inch over and repeat the whole process until you have removed the desired amount of water. If you have sand substrate you will move the siphon around in circles close to the sand to stir up anything that maybe resting on it. Then you can suck it up without sucking up your sand.

    I also want to note that when you do water changes, rinse your filter media in the used tank water. You want to keep it in as good of shape as possible so it lasts longer, and saves you money (and potentially your cycle).

    When you add the new water in, it should be within 5 degrees of the tank water, I personally try to get it as close as possible.

    If you add the new water to a large bucket, you can use your water conditioner and then start adding it to the tank. The water conditioner works almost instantly. If you ever have to do bucket by bucket or use a water changer (like Python or Aqueon) then you will add the water conditioner to the tank, then fill it up. And always use enough water conditioner to treat the whole tank, not just what you are adding.

    I dont think keeping nitrates between 20 and 40 is good advice. Those are the max you want it to be, but if you can keep it less than 20, or even 10, is fine. The lower the better it is for your fish. Provided that you arent stressing them out with super large or large daily changes.
  4. BornThisWayBettasFishlore VIPMember

    Well, 15% isn't enough, as the others have said. I do at least 25% weekly, but probably more most of the time.

    As for the water conditioner, I just add the dosage for the full volume of the tank to one pitcher of water and then pour it straight in, Prime, which is the water conditioner I'm using, works pretty fast.

    Also, don't forget the gravel vacuuming! They have videos on how to do this if you look it up online.
  5. happygoluckyWell Known MemberMember

    I do have a pump sort of thing that sucks up water and anything else smaller than gravel, and I just used it while trying to follow your advice. Let's just say that I wasn't the best tank cleaner beforehand lol. I think it worked and now maybe I'll finally stop procrastinating these tank cleanings.
  6. happyfins14Valued MemberMember

    Gravel siphons are great they get the gunk out your substrate very well and although you may be afraid of sucking up your fish they usually stay away from the tube.

    I agree with changing a little more water than 15%. And if you want to do more, if there's stuff like algae growing on the glass you can wipe it down with a clean sponge.
  7. alinkWell Known MemberMember

    I would just like to clarify so theres no confusion. The sponge you would use to clean the algae would only be used for that purpose. So dont use one from your kitchen or bathroom to do it. It may seem obvious to some but Im sure others wouldnt think about that.

    There are algae scrubbers sold in stores. Some have just a sponge end, some, like mine, have a scraper edge.

    You could also consider growing the algae to feed a new fish that you may want (Plecos, Otos, SAE's come to mind).

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