Whats the skinny on water changes? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-10-2010, 01:29 AM Thread Starter
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Whats the skinny on water changes?

Ok guys heres my problem. Im still pretty new to planted tanks and am having strange readings on my test strips. Before I got into planted tanks, 30 % weekly was fine for me to keep nitrates low. And that was my regiment until something strange happened. I missed a week on changing the water on my 36 gallon planted tank. So the following week, I tested with a strip to see how bad my water was. It was actually way better than before! My nitrates were were barely reading a trace on the strip. I guess maybe 5-10 ppm. But I also noticed my ph had dropped to 6.8. That was weird because this tank used to be my cichlid tank and still contains a couple of lace rock pieces and has crushed coral substrate. Any help on this phenomenon is appreciated because now im nervous about doing anoher waterchange and really screwing up water parameters. Strip reads as follows:no3 0-10 ppm, no2 0, gh 300, chlorine 0, kh higher than 300, ph 6.8 its a low tech tank 1.2 wpg using NO t8 bulbs, cascade 1000 canister with sponge, eheim cocoapuffs, and biofloss, and am dosing every other week with micrbe-lift special blend and tetra florapride.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-10-2010, 02:18 AM
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Well for starters the strips are really bad, once you get massively hooked into the plant hobby you'll stop using them and then all you need is the liquid drop tests for ammonia and pH and even then they are not all that exact without calibrating them and that's a pain in the butt.

If you have live plants that makes since as they will be absorbing some of that which is what you want to happen. Actually after re-reading your posts that sounds exactly what should be happening, sounds like you have things well under control.

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-10-2010, 02:22 AM
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I have always noticed that my fish really like it when I do big water changes, and nothing bad ever happens as a result, assuming I always use Prime or equivalent to get rid of chloramine and chlorine in the new water. The water changes also get rid of any possible buildup of undesirable substances in the water, and prevent any excessive buildup of any of the fertilizers being dosed. Big water changes are good.

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-10-2010, 02:23 AM
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Water changes also remove the pheromones that your fish give off to communicate with others, such as pheromones that show they are ready to breed and what not. It is not just to remove Nitrates.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-10-2010, 12:23 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info. So I will continue my water changes as usual and drop the test strips for a liquid test kit. I did not know about the fish pheromones and is nice to learn something new.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-10-2010, 12:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppy View Post
I have always noticed that my fish really like it when I do big water changes, and nothing bad ever happens as a result, assuming I always use Prime or equivalent to get rid of chloramine and chlorine in the new water. The water changes also get rid of any possible buildup of undesirable substances in the water, and prevent any excessive buildup of any of the fertilizers being dosed. Big water changes are good.
Both my plants AND fish thank me after large water changes! It's almost like it's party time! LOL.

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Water changes also remove the pheromones that your fish give off to communicate with others, such as pheromones that show they are ready to breed and what not. It is not just to remove Nitrates.
That is something I never thought of but makes perfect sense. The things I learn form this forum are amazing!!! I wonder what else gets removed that I never thought of???
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-11-2010, 06:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Noahma View Post
Water changes also remove the pheromones that your fish give off to communicate with others, such as pheromones that show they are ready to breed and what not. It is not just to remove Nitrates.
interesting, But whenever i do water changes (30-40%), within 2 days my goldie pair go in spawning frenzy . so they like the wc i guess and communicate harder ? :P
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-11-2010, 06:32 AM
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A lot of fish spawn after big water changes though. One method used by lots of friends is to do huge water changes on the new moon and it makes african cichlids spawn like mad.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-11-2010, 12:26 PM
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interesting, But whenever i do water changes (30-40%), within 2 days my goldie pair go in spawning frenzy . so they like the wc i guess and communicate harder ? :P
It was all outlined within an article I had read a few months back. If I can find the issue, I will let you know, it was a pretty interesting read.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-11-2010, 03:00 PM
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Big WC's tend to lower the temp which is what normally induces spawning when I want to force spawns I stop pre-heating my water and let it shock them. I wouldn't recommend doing that on guppy tanks unless you like 100's of fry, I'm in that pickle right now.

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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-11-2010, 06:12 PM
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Originally Posted by bradac56 View Post
Big WC's tend to lower the temp which is what normally induces spawning when I want to force spawns I stop pre-heating my water and let it shock them. I wouldn't recommend doing that on guppy tanks unless you like 100's of fry, I'm in that pickle right now.

- Brad
get something cool that likes small feeders... problem solved.
lol
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