New Tank Set up and Water Conditioning/Change - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-13-2006, 11:41 PM Thread Starter
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New Tank Set up and Water Conditioning/Change

I set up an Eclipse 12 gallon and 6 gallon yesterday with some vals, nana and java ferns. I have not conditioned the water to remove chlorine and chloramine yet and I was wondering when is a good time to do that.

Also, when should I do my first water change? When water changing, do you condition the water before adding it into the tank or do you just add water from the tap- supposing it's a 20-30% water change every 1-2 weeks?

No fish until my plants appear to be surviving and I get my questions answered.

Thanks!
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-13-2006, 11:54 PM
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I treat the water as I add it to the tank. Using Seachem Prime per the directions you add enough to treat the total tank volume. Then I just fill direct from the faucet.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-14-2006, 12:48 PM
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I'm on a well now, yay! But, when I was on city water I always squirted in as much water conditioner as necessary for my water change, then added the tap water directly to the tank. In almost 10 years of fishkeeping, I've never had a problem.

With just plants in the tank, there's not much point in doing water changes. Water changes are mainly done to reduce the ammonia/nitrite/nitrates built up in your tank from fish waste. How often you need to do them depends on a number of things...how high your fish load is, how much you're feeding, how well-cycled your tank is. I change water 2x (40-50%) per week in my planted discus tank. Other tanks are changed once per week.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-14-2006, 04:33 PM
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Have you checked your sitting pH on the tap? And you could check your KH and GH too, so you know what kind of water you may be dealing with. Oh, I didn't see your city. Seattle. Probably fairly soft water.





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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-15-2006, 02:56 AM
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I've always conditioned the water (chems and temp) BEFORE it goes into the tank. I never add more chemicals than is needed. Why? Waste of money and potentially not good for the fish. You could make an argument against conditioning it before hand for a larger tank, but I have a 46 and 20 (small) so it is just as easier to haul the 'ready to go' water to the tank.

Depending on your water specs, a water change also replenishes some of the trace elements. It can also mitigate an algae bloom if you see it heading that way.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-15-2006, 03:01 AM
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Overdosing any water conditioner is potentially dangerous as it may bind to free oxygen if it can't find NH3 or Cl- to bind to.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-15-2006, 03:08 AM
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I've been "off" tap conditioners for a long time now. I let my tap h2o cure in a bucket for 24-72 hours than add. I have a beef with the phosphates and whatever elese is in these "conditioners". But hey - dont get me wrong - if ya have a very big tank or get stuck in a bind it is a neccesity.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-15-2006, 03:17 AM
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"curing" the water removes chlorine, but not chloramines. Both are hazardous to the fishes.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-15-2006, 03:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MIL007
I've been "off" tap conditioners for a long time now. I let my tap h2o cure in a bucket for 24-72 hours than add. I have a beef with the phosphates and whatever elese is in these "conditioners". But hey - dont get me wrong - if ya have a very big tank or get stuck in a bind it is a neccesity.
Back in the times when water companies used chlorine to sanitize the water your method was a good one. But, now most places use chloramine, which is both chlorine and ammonia. They do this because chloramine is much longer lasting in the water - meaning it won't go away just by letting the water age. The safe way to get rid of this chemical soup is to use a water conditioner like Seachem Prime, which breaks down the chloramine into chlorine and ammonia and makes both harmless. From what it says on the Prime bottle, it also neutralizes nitrites.

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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-15-2006, 12:39 PM
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Prime only neutralizes nitrates when used in much higher doses than used in treating water.
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-15-2006, 04:41 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the tips and discussion everyone. I used added Tetra AquaSafe last night for conditioning which states it removes chlorine and chloramine and I'll do some pH tests this weekend. It's only been day 3 since I set up my tanks.

Specifically, thanks Bombay for the water change treating advice. Since my tanks are so small, I'll treat the water first before the water change and adjust it to the correct temp before adding it to the tank.
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