What do you use to do water changes? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 07:29 PM Thread Starter
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What do you use to do water changes?

I have a 50 foot Python, but thinking about getting rid of it as does not work great for me, it always gets clogged, plus the adapter does not fit on any of my sinks. Unable to find an adapter that will fit on the sink, it oddball size.

So I have to use a little hand held syphon to get it to empty, don't want to get mouth full of tank water. Then I have to fill the bath tub up with water and use my eheim pump to fill it back up. Go to be a better way to do it? I am finding weekly water changes annoying.

Thinking about ordering 50 feet of 3/4 vinyl tubing and getting some type of pump that inline to do away with the hand help syphon pump I am using. Would also help make water changes faster.
Any suggestions?
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 07:45 PM
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I use a python - I've accidentally clogged it once or twice, but generally I've found it trouble free.

Edited to add: you can get a universal faucet adapter for the python. http://www.amazon.com/Python-UNIVERS.../dp/B000255NWS

Several people on here have made their own DIY water change systems - Tom Barr (Plant Brain) has posted pictures of his on a couple of threads, if I remember correctly he uses pretty large diameter pipe so I would think it would be virtually uncloggable.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 08:04 PM
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One of the largest items for making water changes simple took me a bit of work but has tremendous benefits. I added a drain through an outside wall so that I just shove the plastic tubing into a 3/4 PVC pipe under the stand and let it fly to the grass outside.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 08:15 PM
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I also have unusual shaped faucets so haven't bothered to get a python

What I've been doing:
I got a larger (50 liter) cooler with wheels and use a syphon to pull the water into the cooler, then dump the cooler out (often on plants to water them)
Then, I fill the cooler with hose water while I'm outside (not a special hose or anything, and my fish don't seem to care)
(optional) add dechlorinator - I get my water from a well so I skip this step
I pull the cooler inside and then I use a Maxi-Jet 1200 and stick it in the cooler and have a hose run from the pump to the tank to fill it back up

I can water change a 20H and 10 in about 15 minutes this way and I don't have to lift a heavy bucket or anything, which is what I was doing before

I have a 40B and a 20L that I'm working on currently so the easier water changes are WELL worth it to me

-Josh


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"Give a man a fish and he will get a bowl, teach a man how to keep fish and he will get a planted tank"
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 08:22 PM
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I am liking these ideas! I too have odd faucets and unfortunately my tank is no where near an exterior wall, so I have been doing the water changes with a damn bucket and it sucks. I really like the idea of a cooler on wheels!

At my old place, my 75 gal was on a stand in front of a window. I popped the screen out and just siphoned the water out the window into the grass and refilled from the hose, through the window- that was a great system!

I should have planned a better tank placement in this house!
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 08:26 PM
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Siphoning out the window and filling straight back in would be REALLY convenient haha

Now I thought the cooler's top would be water tight and it isn't, but I found if you move it fairly slowly (to prevent a LOT of splashing in the cooler) it ends up moving the water without spilling. Or just don't fill the cooler as high lol but I want to make it in as few trips as possible

-Josh


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Quote:
Originally Posted by pejerrey
"Give a man a fish and he will get a bowl, teach a man how to keep fish and he will get a planted tank"
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 08:37 PM
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I used to have a small submersible pond pump and vinyl hose that used when I was a fish breeder/hoarder. I keep the pump a 5gal pail, 8' of intake hose and 30' of outlet hose. It was easy to move around my fish room basement. After I was done with W/C it all was stored in the bucket. That worked well and never a leak concern.

All my tanks back then were bare bottom, so there wasn't any gravel cleaning.

My biggest tank is now a 40 and it's next to a patio door. A simple hose is all I use today. Refills are with 1 gal jugs.
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 08:55 PM
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I have a 44 gallon Brute on gravity drain lines to my sump. Water is pumped using an off-shoot of the plumbing going back to the tank. 3 valves to turn and nice and quick.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 09:54 PM
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My 55 gal is right next to a sliding door that goes out to the patio...I just use a 10 foot vinyl tube to drain out to the lawn.
For filling up, instead of using a piece of crap plastic tube from aqueon that costs 75 dollars i spent ~20 at the hardware store and got a faucet adapter with a hose barb on the end that attaches to a 20 foot vinyl hose. During the summer cold tap water comes out at about 78 degrees so its perfect. I just add dechlorinator directly to the tank


however...my 10 gal is a diana walstad set up. it's 2 months old and i have yet to have to do a water change...beat that!
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 10:31 PM
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For now I am using an ordinary garden hose, with a U shaped PVC end on it, that hooks over the top of the tank. I start by hooking up the other end to a hose bib, with the PVC end laying on my deck, turning on the water briefly to clean out the hose and fill it with water. Then I carefully move the PVC end to the tank, again turn on the water briefly, to remove any air in the hose. Shut off the hose bib, and disconnect the hose, from which water immediately pours. I catch several gallons of old water in 5 gallon buckets to water my container plants on the deck, then drain the rest over the edge of the deck to the plantings below. When the water has drained down far enough, I reconnect the hose to the hose bib, and turn on the water to fill the tank. Immediately when that starts I add Prime to the tank. During the drain and refill I also wipe down the glass, pick out plant debris, etc. When the tank is nearly full I time how long it takes for the water to rise about a half inch in the tank, then use that to judge when to close the hose bib outside. After that I pick up the PVC end out of the tank, hold it high so no water spills out, and carry it back outside, drop it on the deck, and disconnect the hose from the hose bib. When I roll up the hose I keep that end high so the hose drains as I roll it up. Stick it back in the storage compartment on my deck and I'm done.

In the winter I will probably switch to 25% water changes twice a week, so the colder water won't harm the fish.

Hoppy
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 11:12 PM
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Aqueon water changer. It fit my sink without needing an adapter but you can get those cheap at Home Depot or somewhere similar if needed. Been using it for a while now, no problems.
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 11:16 PM
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I can't use the python on my kitchen sink, but I can on the bathroom sink. I took out the little filter part, got an adapter that fits in it from Petco, and my python is 25ft. I use it to both fill and empty my tanks.

Fluval Flora Pimp #34, 40b Congo Puffer Tank,

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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 11:20 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks all for the feedback, I have tried about 10 adapters none would fit. My sinks are odd ball size I am sure.
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 11:38 PM
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I had the Aqueon version of the Python, but recently the valve and faucet hookup were getting aggravating. the valve is kind of flimsy, the compression type nut that holds the tubing on always comes loose, and overall I just wasnt happy with it. I got some larger 1 inch pvc fittings and a valve, and few bushings to adapt it to my faucet. I have it hooked up to my faucet and I'm still using the original hose until I buy some larger diameter vinyl tubing, probably 3/4". Tired of the stock narrow hose always kinking and I feel it just doesnt flow enough water. Looking to make my water changes a little quicker. Heck, maybe I'll just get 1" hose instead of 3/4
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-23-2012, 12:06 AM
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i use the garden hose from my backyard to act as a suction/vacuum water out then use it again to fill up my tank. super easy and clean.
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