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Old 11-19-2011, 09:04 PM   #1 
Dead Sunlight
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Post Maintenence Checklist

Daily-
Feed fish twice a day (as much as consumed in 5 minutes)
Turn light on and off (10 hours a day)
Check water temperature
Make sure all equiptment is working properly and is not too dirty
Study fish carefully, watching for behavioral changes and signs of disease

Weekly-
Preform 10% water change of the current tank water
Add matured water to compensate for water evaporation
Check filter(s) to see if top mat needs to be replaced
Vacuum thoroughly and attempt to clean up mulm and detritus
Test the water for pH, nitrates, and softness (for newly-established tanks)
Trim and fertilize plants as needed

Monthly-
Preform 25% water change of the current tank water
Clan tank's inside glass with an algae scraper or sponge
Vaccum the tank thoroughly, stirring up substrate and eliminating mulm
Test water for pH, nitrates, and softness (for established tanks)
Rinse any decorations that have accumulated in buildup
Trim and fertilize plants; replace if necessary

Quarterly (every 3 months)-
Preform 50% water change of current water
Replace airstones
Rinse filter materials completely and replace if necessary
Clean inside glass with algae scraper or sponge
Vaccum tank thoroughly, stirring up substrate and eliminating mulm
Trim and fertilize plants; replace if necessary
Test water for pH, nitrates, and softness
Rinse any decorations that have accumulated in buildup

Yearly-

Completely start over
Place fish and live plants in seperate containers with current water
Strip down filter; replace at least 50% of the media with new matter and charcoal
Drain tank
Replace airstones
Rinse substrate thoroughly until most detritus is removed
Clean the insides of the tenk throughly
Restart aquarium all over again, but save some old water to help jump-start cycling

NOTE- I DO NOT OWN ANY OF THE ABOVE, I had many books aid me in putting together an ideal checklist. Of course, the list varies between each person, as one may do things differently than another.
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Old 11-19-2011, 09:14 PM   #2 
Pitluvs
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Old water doesn't not carry bacteria to jump start a tank. It's just that, old water. To jump start a tank, media from an established filter or substrate that has not been ashed or dried will help.
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Old 11-19-2011, 10:42 PM   #3 
Kytkattin
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Why restart the tank every year?
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Old 11-20-2011, 08:06 AM   #4 
Littlebittyfish
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IMO, there is no reason to start over yearly if your tank is completely cycled...Unless you are just wanting to redecorate...The gravel doesn't need to be rinsed because it holds in your benefical bacteria.10% water change seems a little low for weekly water change..I have had more success keeping my weeklywater changes around 30-40%.

Last edited by Littlebittyfish; 11-20-2011 at 08:14 AM.
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Old 11-20-2011, 09:12 AM   #5 
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A check list could be a good thing, and it's appreciated you took time and effort to put one together- but you have to keep in mind everyone's tank, and the needs are different.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dead Sunlight View Post
Daily-
Feed fish twice a day (as much as consumed in 5 minutes) Actually that will turn into over feeding. There is a recommended amount to feed, such as pellets (4-6 total a day for medium, etc) and other types of food. If you allowed them to pig out for that long, at some point, or multiple times, will cause the fish to become bloated. That recommendation is usually on a flake food container, and used for a community tank with multiple fish. A single betta has different requirements.
Turn light on and off (10 hours a day) Depends on whether there is live plants, etc. People with live plants usually do approx 12 hrs. with it. So the time will differentiate between the tank's needs concerning plants, algae, occupants, etc.
Check water temperature
Make sure all equiptment is working properly and is not too dirty
Study fish carefully, watching for behavioral changes and signs of disease

Weekly-
Preform 10% water change of the current tank water Once again, that varies. Not a lot of tanks are fine with 10% a week- as most have 10 gallons and under for their bettas, the water changes per week is up quite a bit larger then just the 10%. Also unfiltered tanks (which many people have) require multiple water changes per week. Cannot safely say to do just a 10% water change per week since very few can get away with that.
Add matured water to compensate for water evaporation
Check filter(s) to see if top mat needs to be replaced
Vacuum thoroughly and attempt to clean up mulm and detritus
Test the water for pH, nitrates, and softness (for newly-established tanks)
Trim and fertilize plants as needed

Monthly-
Preform 25% water change of the current tank water Once again, this is not enough.. as tanks 10 gallons and under, 25%+ weekly is the norm.
Clan tank's inside glass with an algae scraper or sponge
Vaccum the tank thoroughly, stirring up substrate and eliminating mulm
Test water for pH, nitrates, and softness (for established tanks)
Rinse any decorations that have accumulated in buildup
Trim and fertilize plants; replace if necessary

Quarterly (every 3 months)-
Preform 50% water change of current water (read previous water changes)
Replace airstones Should add in "if applicable" since a lot of people don't use them with bettas as it's not necessary and in the smaller tanks causes more problems then anything.
Rinse filter materials completely and replace if necessary
Clean inside glass with algae scraper or sponge
Vaccum tank thoroughly, stirring up substrate and eliminating mulm
Trim and fertilize plants; replace if necessary
Test water for pH, nitrates, and softness
Rinse any decorations that have accumulated in buildup

Yearly-

Completely start over Why would you want to go through the cycle process all over again? You can do more harm and damage then good.. an established tank can go years and years..
Place fish and live plants in seperate containers with current water
Strip down filter; replace at least 50% of the media with new matter and charcoal Charcoal should be replaced monthly.. and sponges only replace is absolutely necessary.
Drain tank
Replace airstones
Rinse substrate thoroughly until most detritus is removed
Clean the insides of the tenk throughly
Restart aquarium all over again, but save some old water to help jump-start cycling

NOTE- I DO NOT OWN ANY OF THE ABOVE, I had many books aid me in putting together an ideal checklist. Of course, the list varies between each person, as one may do things differently than another.
I'm sorry to sound rude.. but you generalized this down so much- have to keep in mind most owners here have the smaller tanks, from 1 gallon to 10 gallons which require quite a big difference then what you recommended on here.
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Old 11-20-2011, 01:32 PM   #6 
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I agree with the above. I'd like to see you list some of your references so I can check them out myself.

You don't make any qualifiers. 10% weekly might be enough for a HEAVILY planted, low stocked tank, generally speaking that's going to be your tanks in the 100 gallons and up mark.

No need to re-start a tank, in fact that would be a bad idea unless you wanted to rescape, etc because you risk messing up the water chemistry. Don't fix what's not broken.

I won't go on since most of it has already been gone over.
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Old 11-20-2011, 10:10 PM   #7 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1fish2fish View Post

You don't make any qualifiers. 10% weekly might be enough for a HEAVILY planted, low stocked tank, generally speaking that's going to be your tanks in the 100 gallons and up mark.
My divided 5.5 gallon is planted I would say a medium amount and the water changes on it are only 10% every week. I guess it is the giant filter I have on it to make up for it? The water quality always remains perfect, and my fish are as healthy as can be. Sometimes I only do water changes every two weeks. I mostly do them to get the water level low enough to prune and scrub a little algae off the walls. And I know OFL has some smaller planted tanks that basically take care of themselves with only a couple water changes a year.
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Old 11-21-2011, 12:42 PM   #8 
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Yeah, there is a lot of nonspecific and wrong info in that checklist. I would never completely restart a cycled tank. and 10% is low. My 5.5 gets at least 50%, my 10 gets at least 30% and my 29 gets about 20% changes once a week. And they are all planted.

and Kytkattin, 10% is not nearly enough once or twice a week, planted or not. A bigger filter helps, but when the waste gets down to nitrates, it still builds up and no filter can get rid of that. Thus, water changes still need to be sufficient. Please consider upping that. Especially since it's divided. I would probably be doing 30-50% changes twice a week on that. Or like 80% once a week.
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Old 11-21-2011, 12:47 PM   #9 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokeNLark View Post

and Kytkattin, 10% is not nearly enough once or twice a week, planted or not. A bigger filter helps, but when the waste gets down to nitrates, it still builds up and no filter can get rid of that. Thus, water changes still need to be sufficient. Please consider upping that. Especially since it's divided. I would probably be doing 30-50% changes twice a week on that. Or like 80% once a week.
I test the water frequently (weekly) with the API master test kit and it is always perfect. My nitrates always hang around .10ppm. I base my changes on tests and how my fish look. What else should I base it on?
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Old 11-21-2011, 01:19 PM   #10 
Sena Hansler
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I do a 20% weekly change for my sorority 20 gallon tank, that has three types of live plants... and every 6 months I do a 50-75% with rearranging... When I move, I have to keep 10% of water in the tank to keep the media moist, and the bacteria alive because I don't want it to have to re-cycle!

For me, I think tanks beneath 2 gallons should be cleaned 3 times a week at least (usually every other day), 3 gallons can get away with once a week half to 75%, with one fish that is... 5 gallons once a week 25-30%, 10 gallons once a week about 20-30%, and so on... That way you keep the waste down :) Also depends if you have filtration, snails, live plants, how many fish and how big the bioload of each fish is (goldfish versus a betta)... It's so hard to get everything down lol.

I don't even bother with testing anymore, once I had all of my 10+ gallon tanks cycled, as long as I keep up with the cleaning chart I do. (for instance, bettas in 2-3 gallons have their days of cleaning, every week the big tanks get cleaned, etc). Just gotta find out what works, and even use a calendar to state when and how much should be cleaned :)

I feed my bettas twice a day, one day of fasting. Never over feeding. This reduces waste (less left over food, less chance of sickness, etc), which also changes how much of a water change and when... And also if there are treatments being done.
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