Did my first weekly water change today with a siphon vacuum... cannot believe how much faster and more efficient it is with one of those things! Got a TopFin one from Petsmart, used a marked/measured bucket, not a drop spilled from the siphoning. Emptied half the tank in a little over a minute. Sucked up a lot of the schmutz. So pleased, just had to be careful of the ghost shrimp. ;)
OH, once you've done one, you'll never go back!
SO much faster, easier, and you clean up the gravel so much more because of the strong suction.
I think they've got one at walmart for 9 or 10$, but that's about average. :) I'd check online to whatever stores you have locally and find the best price and then just hit that store. :) That way you can shop from home and make one trip. :)
One other tip, someone came up with this a few months back, so I'm not taking credit, lol, but I did want to pass it on!
But to refill a tank, you can get a large bucket, fill it with water, treat it, and then take a pond or fountain pump and some wide-diameter airline tubing and pump the water back into the tank. ;) I do partial changes on 130 gals of water every 2 weeks, which made water changes SUCH a pain, but I bought a really big Rubbermaid container, stuck it in my bathtub, filled it with water, and then pumped the water out of the bathroom, down the hall, into the other room...and into the tanks. ;) You have to get a pretty strong pump, but it works great. :) And no more carrying buckets, yay!! :D