Flushing a Tank...ok procedure? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-27-2016, 01:48 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
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Flushing a Tank...ok procedure?

My existing tanks (3) are all low tech with minimal water changes. Combined with some sloppy maintenance on my part, the water parameters in them are different enough from my new tank that I can't just plop the fish from the old tanks into the new. pH varies by .2-.3, TDS are about the same, but the kH is way off.

I'd really rather not drip acclimate the fish, and have been doing daily 20% water changes. The parameters are slowly creeping up, but at this rate it will take awhile to get everything back to the same point and I'd really like to add some fish to the new tank.

Found the below procedure online for flushing a tank:
The first water change:
  1. Remove 1/2 of the water in the tank.
  2. Treat enough water to replace the tank with conditioner, but only fill the tank up half way. (So that itís now 3/4 of the way filled).
  3. Wait 15 to 30 minutes, then fill the tank the rest of the way.
Taking the first water change slow will keep them from being stressed as they slowly adjust to the new water.
The second water change:
  1. Right after you refill the tank, remove half the water again. Thereís no need to fill it up in two steps this time, as the fish are already used to the large water changes.
After the second 50% water change, wait no more than 60 minutes, then conduct 2-3 more 50% water changes.

Would the above be too great of a shock to the fish or does it seem like something worth trying?
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-27-2016, 02:36 PM
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Much will depend on the fish and how each is prone to harm. Some are tough, some not. Fish caught in a river can be taken home and chucked directly into a stock tank and do fine. Neon tetra may die from bringing them home to a different tank so it matters a lot. What fish do you have?
I would far rather go with giving them more time to adjust and watching them as I do. I would also want to keep a backup plan so I could retreat if they showed signs of dying.
I see the reason for wanting to make the change and would do the same but perhaps a different way. What about using water from one tank to refill the other and at the same time do large water changes. It may still not work out to be totally the same as what is in one tank may change the water there in ways that it doesn't in the other tank.
Keep tough fish???
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-27-2016, 03:09 PM Thread Starter
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I'm trying to be cautious as the entire point to the new larger tank (180g) was for the clown loaches, all of which I'm rather attached to. I've kept them in properly maintained water here, but life resulted in me getting very non-consistent with water changes and parameter differences. Unfortunately, the existing tanks are all 40g (2) so I can't really fill the new one with the old water.

They've been doing ok with the 20% daily changes, I just may have to keep at it until the water stabilizes at the higher kH.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-27-2016, 04:04 PM
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I find clown loaches are really some of the tough guys who just keep on ticking. I have swapped them from my tanks to my daughters tank which are considerably different and back again and their main concern seemed to be when they got to eat!! My Pflugerville water and Austin water are from different sources.
If KH is the main point of concern, one way to bump that up might be to add a big old hunk of limestone. If it is easy to find in your area, I might just suggest picking some outside and trying it in the tank as it does provide lots of GH/KH for buffering which makes the PH far more stable and that is a good thing.
One big point in your favor is that the larger tanks are far easier to keep steady and steady seems to be far more important than keeping any of the parameters exact by the book. I fight my 20 long but my 125 is a piece of cake.
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