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Old 07-05-2010, 09:33 AM   #11 
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Week-10-20% water changes
Month-25% water changes
Quarterly-50% water changes
Year 5o% complete water changes
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Old 07-05-2010, 10:23 AM   #12 
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Location: Middlesex County, NJ
(Yeah, I loved that show too! :D)

I forgot to mention that when I change my 16, I swish the ceramic rings and the sponge around in the dirty water and I change my other cartridge filters probably bi-monthly.
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Old 07-05-2010, 02:22 PM   #13 
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I do a 50% change and an 80% change with gravel vac every week. I have 2 5gl tanks. The tank I have corys in gets messy because of their food so I do a 100% cleaning once a month.
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Old 07-05-2010, 05:07 PM   #14 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA
Aquariums are closed systems and because of this- the water has to be changed regardless of filtration, we become mother nature in a sense.....

You have more than ammonia, nitrite, nitrate that can build up in a closed system, you have (DOC's) organics that can only be removed by water changes or lots and lots of live active growing plants (this is still being debated).

With regular water changes there shouldn't be much difference in chemistry and when done correctly water changes should be stress free for the fish and often the fish will enjoy and look forward to the water changes.

By making water only changes you are not removing very much of the good bacteria, the good bacteria are sticky and adhere to everything in the tank-like the walls, decorations, both live and fake plants, in the top layer of the substrate and in the filter media, very little is in the water column-over cleaning the filter media or using chlorinated tap water can kill the good bacteria and over cleaning the substrate can cause a mini-cycle on cycled/filtered tanks.

It is important when making water changes on filtered tanks to vacuum or stir the gravel in area that can be reached without moving anything in the tank at least one time a week and to only swish/rinse the filter media in old tank water with a water change to get the big pieces of gunk off so that the water flow is not slowed and can aerate the water, top layer of substrate and filter media to keep the good bacteria thriving as they need oxygenated water to colonize and thrive.

It can be confusing with all the information, opinions, experience from others and everyone thinks they are right because it works for them, however, in my opinion most are correct for them and a great starting point for most- until you get a better understanding and experience in this awesome hobby we all enjoy.

There are lots of different ways to keep fish successfully-it is finding what works for you, your source water, and your fish.
Once you have the basic information as the starting point and are good to go......if a method is not working-tweek-it-it may not be a wrong method just not one for you........

There are so many variables in this hobby IMO/E-a water change on one tank maybe different because of the type of filter, live plants, number of fish, size of tank, cycling, feeding habits etc.......a hobbyist may have ammonia or nitrate in the source water because of lots of rain or drought and even a change at the water supply plant, really low or high pH, rusty pipes or an old hot water many variables at play that can change the whole ball game.......
But if you know the basics and the meaning of the issues at hand-they are an easy fix....Now, it is finding and sifting through all this stuff to know what is true and what is not or just an old timers myth...that is the challenge...............

I am of the belief that freshwater fish thrive with fresh water and you can't do too many water only changes and freshwater is the best prevention/treatment of health/fin issues for fish in a closed system.

To be a successful keeper of fish you must first be a keeper of water.......
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Old 07-05-2010, 06:24 PM   #15 
Lion Mom
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Location: N.E. Wisconsin, U.S.A.
"To be a successful keeper of fish you must first be a keeper of water.......:

I like that!!!!

All I know is weekly water changes with gravel vac has worked for me for approx. 10 years now (along with cleaning my AquaClear sponges in used tank water) so I think I will stick with that. :)
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Old 07-06-2010, 12:18 AM   #16 
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Location: The Gun Shine State
Water changes may be done on a regular schedule or as-needed according to water test results. For most aquariums, if time allows, we recommend 10% water changes, done once a week, regardless of test results. If you use an under gravel filter or a shallow layer of gravel on the bottom, we suggest you vacuum out accumulated detritus and debris as you remove water from the tank. At a very minimum, we suggest changing 25% of the water at least once every four weeks. If you are correcting a bad water condition and more than 25% of the water is to be changed, add new water back to the aquarium slowly or do smaller water changes every other day. For water changes in excess of 25%, add one inch of new water every ten minutes so as not to stress fish, or upset the environment. It is possible to change too much water or change water too often, and this happens more than you might think. Always remember that an aquarium should not be a sterile environment that is clean enough to drink out of!
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