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Old 03-16-2013, 07:42 AM   #1 
Juditko's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Texas
Smile Makes water changes easier for tanks on tall surfaces

Thought I'd share a cheap success of late. We have a newly established ten gallon on a sturdy dresser in a child's room (safest option available and working well.) We started with a one gallon, moved to a 2.5 gal, and finally came to the ten as the best option for our busy family. We needed less water changes per week, though I was concerned about more water.

Cleaning the tank and removing the water has not been a problem via the gravel siphon. Replacing the water was, though, since the dresser is too tall to siphon water back up. I found a pond pump:

I did not worry too much about the gph, but I watched for the max lift. This one was close to the distance i needed and had an adaptor for a smaller hose, and it works well enough to push the water up and into the tank with just a gentle flow. I zip tied a plastic hanger hook that I found in the plumbing department at lowes to the aquarium end of the hose so I could hook it over the side of the tank. (The pump does not come with hose, so I purchased it separately.)

Sorry the last two pics are sideways, but you get the idea. The rig works like a charm!

After two water changes with it, here are my "I learned its":
1. My betta is too curious, so I cup him for safety before I start the partial water change.
2. Plan for an extra gallon of water. This keeps the pump submerged in the bottom of the bucket and prevents damage since it doesn't run dry.
3. My bucket is only a five gallon, so I have to bring an extra water container and top off as needed to keep the pump submerged if I want to do a full fifty percent water change.
4. If you turn off the pump, remove the hose from the tank as it WILL create a back siphon and drain your tank back into the bucket (I proved that lol!)

The pump takes about ten minutes or so to refill the aquarium. The flow is really gentle. Due to this, the water cools a bit, so I actually use new water that is a degree or two hotter than the tank when I start. It turns out right on the mark that way.

I just wanted to share this as a fairly cheap alternative if you have a high tank that is difficult to refill.
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Old 03-16-2013, 10:34 AM   #2 
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Very cool, thanks for sharing
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Old 03-16-2013, 02:34 PM   #3 
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Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Midwest
I used to change a 10 gallon tank this way years ago when I had an aquarium. It's fast and efficient and flow is low. I am not sure where that pump is so thank you for posting this. I will be gettting 20 gallon divided soon and this is going to be handy.
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Old 03-16-2013, 02:37 PM   #4 
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Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Ontario, Canada
great idea...I like this as I can have one tank filling while I take water out of the 2nd tank. time saving tip here!
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Old 03-17-2013, 01:59 AM   #5 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Apple Valley,CA
Great! Ingenious! Beats lifting buckets.
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Old 03-17-2013, 06:19 AM   #6 
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C?m on bác, d? mình ki?m nghi?m l?i xem sao
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Old 03-17-2013, 07:19 AM   #7 
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Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Texas
I agree on beating buckets. Plus, my betta lives with five rasboras, and though I cup him, they stay in the tank. The flow rate is thus still important, and it's very gentle!

I forgot to mention that this pump has an adjustable value on it as well. I'm running it wide open due to the dresser height, but you could alter the flow by adjusting that control if you found it too strong for your purposes.

It also has suction cup feet which hold it firmly in the bottom of the bucket. :)
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Old 03-17-2013, 08:38 AM   #8 
Blue Fish
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: East Tennessee
This is FANTASTIC!! I've got 4 20 gals and a 10 gal, and water changes are a real pain in the butt, even with cycled tanks. :P I'll *definitely* need to invest in one of these...and some very long hoses/tubing. ;)
Before I was lugging around 5 gallon jugs of water, which was just awful, and usually left me with wet carpets and slick bathroom floors. :)
Thanks so much for posting this wonderful idea!!
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Old 03-17-2013, 09:23 AM   #9 
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Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Texas
Blue Fish, it has really helped me. If you didn't want to lug the buckets, you could do a sink hose line also into a bucket at the aquarium site. I'm not that good with hoses lol.

By the way, I'm using a cheap clear plastic hose I found at lowes. The hanger hook on the end in the pic is a must...could make it out of nearly anything though.

I know people who run large aquariums set up this kind of stuff permanently, but we are just little ten gallon people at my house...
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