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Old 03-23-2012, 10:05 PM   #1 
TheDevonFox
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Exclamation Any Advice on Water Changing and Tank Cleaning?

Hellooooo, all!

Though I have had two bettas before in the past, I was younger, and didn't intend on taking as good care of them as I am of my new Loki! (That not to say that my past bettas were uncared for! I was in middle school when I had Rainbow, and even though we never really knew how to take the best care of him, he was with me for over three years, in just his one gallon bowl and a weekly full bowl clean.)

ANYWAY, for Loki, who I purchased just two days ago, I want to know what kind of regiment I should have for changing his water and cleaning his tank. And I want ALL the details and advice you guys have got!

Here are the details that I've got:
He is a delta tale male
Living in a 5 gallon tank
With filter and heater
Decorations include a pretty large, holey Parthenon for him to hide in, two different fake plants, two tiny columns, and a small Loki action figure
I used small white gravel

Give me everything you've got, guys! I'm pretty much at a complete lost as to how often and how intensely I need to clean the tank and change the water, especially with a filter, which is completely new to me!

ALL advice is greatly appreciated :D
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Old 03-23-2012, 10:23 PM   #2 
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I'm still a noob but we have the same set up so I will tell you what I do. My fishies have been healthy and happy so I must be doing something right

My tank is cycled, is yours? I do a 50% water change every weekend.

I have a basic aquarium vacuum but I cut the intake tube in half because it was too long for the 5 gallon. I vacuum the tank every weekend. I can only clean about half the gravel before half the water is sucked out.

I don't change the filter cartridge but I do swish it and clean it in the dirty water I siphon out and then replace it into my filter. I also scrub the inside front wall of the tank to remove algae if needed. I have a glass tank. I use a paper towel.

Then I refill the tank with treated tap water. I have gotten pretty good at matching the temperature to the remaining tank water.

I learned from this forum that the bacteria needed for a stable cycled tank live in the gravel, the filter and the decorations, so it's OK not to clean them 100%.
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Old 03-23-2012, 10:27 PM   #3 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by registereduser View Post
I'm still a noob but we have the same set up so I will tell you what I do. My fishies have been healthy and happy so I must be doing something right

My tank is cycled, is yours? I do a 50% water change every weekend.

I have a basic aquarium vacuum but I cut the intake tube in half because it was too long for the 5 gallon. I vacuum the tank every weekend. I can only clean about half the gravel before half the water is sucked out.

I don't change the filter cartridge but I do swish it and clean it in the dirty water I siphon out and then replace it into my filter. I also scrub the inside front wall of the tank to remove algae if needed. I have a glass tank. I use a paper towel.

Then I refill the tank with treated tap water. I have gotten pretty good at matching the temperature to the remaining tank water.

I learned from this forum that the bacteria needed for a stable cycled tank live in the gravel, the filter and the decorations, so it's OK not to clean them 100%.
The thing is, since I just got him, and just set up his good tank today, I haven't got a regiment at all what so ever! But that all sounds simple enough. I haven't got a tank vacuum, but I believe I may be able to make due without it. So once a week seems like the amount of time for tank cleaning and water changing, then?
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Old 03-23-2012, 10:47 PM   #4 
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If filtered, I say once a week is enough. Vacuums are a must for me, they are quite cheap and you can even make your own. You should see the water after a vacuuming! Yucky

http://www.instructables.com/id/Make...your-Aquarium/
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Old 03-24-2012, 12:18 AM   #5 
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Just got to mention, a regiment is a group of soldiers. A regimen (no T) is a schedule. :p

I highly recommend getting a gravel vacuum. Without, trying to get all of the grossness out of the gravel is a laborious task and you might miss bits.

Whilst your tank is cycling, 2 50% changes a week are recommended, vacuuming the gravel for one of these. Once it is fully cycled, 25-50% is enough. :)

I suggest you buy a test kit (the API master kit is the best) so you can be sure when your cycle is over.
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Old 03-24-2012, 12:54 PM   #6 
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i got this api test kit. it has 800 uses http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...00_i00_details

i got a gravel vacuum but it was horrible. it was a battery operated one that seemed like the right size, but it didnt work out. i'm looking for something better for 5-10 gal tanks.

if anybody knows of one that returns the water while it sucks, let me know please. i also have ghost shrimp and i have to watch out for those guys when i'm cleaning. some are quite small and take a long time to grow.

i also got this purigen stuff that gets good reviews.
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...00_i00_details

i replaced one of my media cartridges with a bag of this stuff and i've noticed my water is super clear.
when the media is at the end of its life you can replenish it by soaking it in bleach and then putting it in water with a dechlorinater

Quote:
If filtered, I say once a week is enough. Vacuums are a must for me, they are quite cheap and you can even make your own. You should see the water after a vacuuming! Yucky

http://www.instructables.com/id/Make...your-Aquarium/
that's a siphon in my book

Last edited by jasonh; 03-24-2012 at 01:00 PM.
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Old 03-24-2012, 05:06 PM   #7 
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Siphon, vacuum...sorry if I confuse anyone by using them interchangebly. :) I am recommending what Jason refers to as a siphon, to clear up any confusion. :)

Jason, if you find yourself sucking up ghost shrimp, you can do two things: pour your dirty water away through a fine-holed net or a tea strainer to catch any shrimpies that got sucked up, or put a net over the end of the siphon, big enough to allow dirt particles and water through but small enough to catch shrimp.
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