water change woes - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 22 Old 09-14-2012, 07:05 AM
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O would attribute it to the bleach treatment then. I personally only use tap water in my Freshwater tanks, as they can stand the water after I dose it with Amquel or Stresscoat. But in my Saltwater tank I use nothing but RO/Di water, as these creatures are a bit more sensitive than freshwater.



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post #12 of 22 Old 09-14-2012, 07:26 AM Thread Starter
Angry

I'm thinking that had to be it. Also I did some serious reading and if your water has chloramine in it and you use just a dechlorinator in it you can end up removing the chlorine but what's left is ammonia. Definitely not making that mistake again. I find it odd that my snails and hermits seem to be totally unphased by all this but at least it isn't a total loss. I knew they were more delicate than freshwater but I had no idea it was that easy to kill them.
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post #13 of 22 Old 09-14-2012, 08:36 AM
i have my salt water tank up for 4 months or so and i still havent did a water change.1 because the bio load is next to nothing at the moment.2 im saving for a ro/di system.
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post #14 of 22 Old 09-14-2012, 08:53 AM Thread Starter
Dude honestly I think I should've just left it because I tested my water before my change and I had zeros across the board. Plus my calcium and alkalinity was fine too. Everything you read though online is saying water changes every week or two weeks.
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post #15 of 22 Old 09-14-2012, 09:43 AM
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I usually do 5% Water Changes once every month or maybe every other week (depending on the size of the tank) just to replace trace minerals. Water changes in marine aquariums do not have the same effect as in freshwater aquariums.

In freshwater aquaria, Ammonia is excreted by the fish in the form of respiration, urine and feces. This ammonia is broken down by oxidizing bacteria into NitrItes. These nitrites are still harmful to fish, but Nitrobacter bacteria break it down into NitrAtes, which are not as harmful to fish in moderate levels. Through regular water changes we reduce the nitrates to manageable levels in the aquarium, but never near zero ppm. That would take a 100% water change every week, and that would be stressful the fish. I do a 25% water change (5 gallons) in my twenty fresh on the first Saturday every month that begins with a two (hence this month it will be the 22nd).

In Marine aquaria, we are trying to achieve ZERO ppm on Nitrates. So when the nitrogen cycle turns NitrIte into NitrAte, the cycle cannot end there. Nitrification reduces the buffers in an aquarium, lowering Alkalinity. So Nitrates have an adverse effect on water quality, making it hard to keep Calcium and Alk in check. Since water changes alone only change the percentage of Nitrates in the system (never reduce them to zero without a 100% stressful wc), we need to attack the problem beforehand.

Your live rock has deep-seeded denitrifying anaerobic bacteria that breaks down nitrates into Nitrogen gas that leaves the system naturally. A ddep sand bed (4"+) also harbors this denitrifying bacteria that breaks down nitrates into nitrogen gas. These two things coupled with a protein skimmer (which removes Dissolved Organic Compounds, eg urine and feces, before they are broken down by the nitrogen cycle. Activated Carbon also removes DOCs, but is a controversial method) can reduce and maintain a reading of 0ppm nitrates (or at least to a reading that is less than 5ppm).



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post #16 of 22 Old 09-14-2012, 10:18 AM Thread Starter
I have a bunch of rock and like 2" sand bed. So basically with my skimmer and rock and sand I really shouldn't need to do these water changes unless I am low on minerals. I don't have any corals....def waiting on those following this episode....so nothing is really consuming my minerals. The longer I have this tank the more I'm being convinced that if I properly set it up and have adequate biofiltration its going to essentially run itself.
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post #17 of 22 Old 09-14-2012, 10:18 AM
I do WC every 3-4 months, for Trace Elements. And keep my Nitrates between 20-30ppm. Softies and LPS prefer alittle Nitrate in the water.
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post #18 of 22 Old 09-14-2012, 01:22 PM Thread Starter
Man alive...shows how much false info there is out there. Literally every book and most articles I've read say water changes every other week and big ones. If I'd left it alone I'd still have fish as I was under 5 ppm for nitrates. Left me with 4 snails and 5 hermits.
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post #19 of 22 Old 09-14-2012, 01:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reefing Madness View Post
I do WC every 3-4 months, for Trace Elements. And keep my Nitrates between 20-30ppm. Softies and LPS prefer alittle Nitrate in the water.
I personally never heard this. Do you have a reference? I would be interested in reading that article.



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post #20 of 22 Old 09-14-2012, 04:11 PM
SPS are the ones that need the clean water. Even Clams feed off of Nitrates. Ill hunt the articles down for you.
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