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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hey,

I am trying to setup a auto water change system for my tanks that house shrimp.

I have a hole drilled into each tank and a bulkhead. The water drains out into this as it is filled,

I am using drip irrigation to drip water into the tanks at between 1-4gph

it is on a sprinkler control box that will run once or twice a week doing 20% at a time.

my tap however has ammonia in it at about 1.0ppm

I want to prefilter it before it goes into my tanks.

I want to run it into a carbon media then to ammo chips or something to remove ammonia.

is anyone doing this? if so how? will it remove the ammonia as it runs through the filter?
 

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To be safe with something as sensitive as shrimp, you'd likely want to treat your water in a reservoir of some sort prior to pumping it into your tanks.

With some fish it probably wouldn't be a problem just to dose the tank with Prime after a change. But with sensitive critters? Better safe than sorry with thing like ammonia & nitrite.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
To be safe with something as sensitive as shrimp, you'd likely want to treat your water in a reservoir of some sort prior to pumping it into your tanks.

With some fish it probably wouldn't be a problem just to dose the tank with Prime after a change. But with sensitive critters? Better safe than sorry with thing like ammonia & nitrite.

well that's the thing no nitrite in the water supply.

I want the system to be automated because I have another business that might lead me away for a week or so at a time once in a while and I want the system to still be changing water.

Running into a carbon media should break down the Chlorine right? then all that would be left is ammonia, then running it into the ammo chips should take that out?

Should it run through the carbon first before the ammo chips?

my understanding is chorammines? (spelling) are chlorine and ammonia bonded together and u must break the bond before ammonia can be removed?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I think you likely need to read up a bit on shrimp keeping. Start with the sticky here in the shrimp section.

You'll need to treat the water to remove chlorine and ammonia prior to putting it into your tank. The use of something like Prime may be necessary.

Thats what I was getting at,

I wanted to prefilter the water into a carbon media then into ammo chips before it went into the drip irrigation system into the tanks, does that make more sense?
 

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I understand what you're saying. Which is why I recommended you do a bit more shrimpkeeping research to make things easier on yourself.

With sensitive invertebrates, you can't risk ammonia and chlorine. Unless you are 100% sure it's gone, don't add untreated water to your tank. Carbon and ammo chips likely won't solve the problem you have on your hands. It would also be more wasteful and more expensive than just treating the water with Prime.

What would solve it is treating it with something like Prime or Safe prior to pumping it into your tank. You'd need a reservoir container of some sort for that.

Again, for most fish, it'd probably be fine. But ammonia, nitrite, chlorine and such are bigger no-nos with sensitive invertebrates like most shrimp kept in the hobby.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I understand what you're saying. Which is why I recommended you do a bit more shrimpkeeping research to make things easier on yourself.

With sensitive invertebrates, you can't risk ammonia and chlorine. Unless you are 100% sure it's gone, don't add untreated water to your tank. Carbon and ammo chips likely won't solve the problem you have on your hands. It would also be more wasteful and more expensive than just treating the water with Prime.

What would solve it is treating it with something like Prime or Safe prior to pumping it into your tank. You'd need a reservoir container of some sort for that.

Again, for most fish, it'd probably be fine. But ammonia, nitrite, chlorine and such are bigger no-nos with sensitive invertebrates like most shrimp kept in the hobby.
Alright makes sense,

Here is another question them, The whole point is to have this on an auto water change system,

so pumping it into a holding tank and having an auto doser pump prime into it. how would that setup look? any ideas?

I would need to put a pressure pump onto the holding tank as there would not be enough pressure to run it through my shelves they are three high, about 40 tanks in all.

thoughts?
 

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You'd have to have a mechanism to dose the same amount of Prime into the container - based on volume - each time it filled up. Continual dosing of Prime and continual flow of water into the container would/could lead to potential problems.

It would be much easier, in my opinion and experience, to treat the water manually and then turn on pumps to do the water change. Shrimp - even the most sensitive - should be fine in a healthy, well-established tank with healthy filtration for a few weeks between water changes. So if you're gone for a couple weeks, it shouldn't cause any problems to do the water change when you get back.

P.S. Another option would be to use RO/DI water. But you'd still need to add specific minerals to you water and do parameter matching prior to pumping water into your tanks.
 

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from where the water comes in to a storage tank


than you also put one of these on each tank with a pump in your storage tank.

done deal.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
You'd have to have a mechanism to dose the same amount of Prime into the container - based on volume - each time it filled up. Continual dosing of Prime and continual flow of water into the container would/could lead to potential problems.

It would be much easier, in my opinion and experience, to treat the water manually and then turn on pumps to do the water change. Shrimp - even the most sensitive - should be fine in a healthy, well-established tank with healthy filtration for a few weeks between water changes. So if you're gone for a couple weeks, it shouldn't cause any problems to do the water change when you get back.

P.S. Another option would be to use RO/DI water. But you'd still need to add specific minerals to you water and do parameter matching prior to pumping water into your tanks.

Alright so your saying just pump water into a housing tank then treat it, then turn on the pressure pump and let the drip irrigation system do its thing?

I have thought about RO Water but like you said I would have to remineralize it.
 

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I have thought about RO Water but like you said I would have to remineralize it.
Not if you are just using the RO for top offs. If the RO is being used for top offs only through the ATO system DO NOT remineralize that water. I would go with the RO route. The top offs will be automated and then you can tap into the RO reservoir for water changes in which you DO remineralize the water.

The reason why you don't want remineralized RO water being used for top off is that the concentration levels of the minerals added to the water will continue to increase as evaporation takes away water and you are adding additional minerals with the water to replace the evaporated water. By using RO water straight it is a lot easier to keep parameters stable.

Either way you are going to have to treat your water before it reaches the tank. With tap you have to use prime for the ATO and water changes. With RO you need only to use chemicals once and that is to remineralize for water changes. The RO system would be much more hands off once you get it setup.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Not if you are just using the RO for top offs. If the RO is being used for top offs only through the ATO system DO NOT remineralize that water. I would go with the RO route. The top offs will be automated and then you can tap into the RO reservoir for water changes in which you DO remineralize the water.

The reason why you don't want remineralized RO water being used API. The ATO is that the concentration levels of the minerals added to the water will continue to increase as evaporation takes away water and you are adding additional minerals with the water to replace the evaporated water. By using RO water straight it is a lot easier to keep parameters stable.

Either way you are going to have to treat your water before it reaches the tank. With tap you have to use prime for the ATO and water changes. With RO you need only to use chemicals once and that is to remineralize for water changes. The RO system would be much more hands off once you get it setup.
thanks for your post.I don't want to be a top of system I simply want to be able to have an automated 2 Change water when I'm not there. However as you guys stated it might be easier if I do it manually and how's the water and a reservoir. So what you're saying is I should run my RO water into a holding tank with the float valve and then whenever I want to change my water I simply remember our lives the whole holding tank?
 

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thanks for your post.I don't want to be a top of system I simply want to be able to have an automated 2 Change water when I'm not there. However as you guys stated it might be easier if I do it manually and how's the water and a reservoir. So what you're saying is I should run my RO water into a holding tank with the float valve and then whenever I want to change my water I simply remember our lives the whole holding tank?
How much water are you planning on changing per a week? And how long do you plan on be away on average. If not a lot of water and not sensitive shrimp you can get away with pretreated prime water in a reservoir set to the size capable of maintaining your tanks water while your gone.

With RO I am suggesting that you keep the ATO water just plain RO. Then when you are able to change water, draw water from the RO system or directly from the ATO reservoir and then remineralize that in a bucket before slowly adding it to the tanks at the end of the water change. Once a shrimp-only tank is established it can run for weeks without water changes so the ATO with pure RO will just be used to make sure evaporation doesn't cause a crash. With top offs only my OEBT tank has been running for three weeks without a change. Just a slow TDS creep from 166-198 and 5ppm nitrates.

Your biggest hurdle is actually setting up a mature tank with enough biofilm for the shrimp to graze on while you are gone for weeks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Not if you are just using the RO for top offs. If the RO is being used for top offs only through the ATO system DO NOT remineralize that water. I would go with the RO route. The top offs will be automated and then you can tap into the RO reservoir for water changes in which you DO remineralize the water.

The reason why you don't want remineralized RO water being used for top off is that the concentration levels of the minerals added to the water will continue to increase as evaporation takes away water and you are adding additional minerals with the water to replace the evaporated water. By using RO water straight it is a lot easier to keep parameters stable.

Either way you are going to have to treat your water before it reaches the tank. With tap you have to use prime for the ATO and water changes. With RO you need only to use chemicals once and that is to remineralize for water changes. The RO system would be much more hands off once you get it setup.

As water is pumped into the tanks with the drip irrigation it is also leaving it as it overflows in the bulkhead and out into the drain.

So when using the ro water system I will house it then only turn it on when I want to preform a water change. after I have remineralized the tank correct?
 

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I think you're getting yourself into a more complicated situation than you need.

Regardless of the water you use (I'm ignoring top-offs, as that's not what you asked about), you'll need to either: treat tap water with Prime or remineralize RO water before it goes into the tank during water change.

You shouldn't add remineralization products directly to your aquarium.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I think you're getting yourself into a more complicated situation than you need.

Regardless of the water you use (I'm ignoring top-offs, as that's not what you asked about), you'll need to either: treat tap water with Prime or remineralize RO water before it goes into the tank during water change.

You shouldn't add remineralization products directly to your aquarium.
Okay here is what I am thinking.

A holding tank with say x amount of water in it. Say its RO water.

It fills and shuts off with a float valve. once a week or however I pick I do a 20% water change before I do that change I remineralize the holding tank of RO water.
 

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Right.

To make it easier, you'd fill the holding tank to only the amount you'd be changing. That way it'd stay the same each water change when you mineralize.

Or you could have one huge container of RO water. And pump, as others suggested above, whatever amount you need for your change into a smaller mixing container.

Okay here is what I am thinking.

A holding tank with say x amount of water in it. Say its RO water.

It fills and shuts off with a float valve. once a week or however I pick I do a 20% water change before I do that change I remineralize the holding tank of RO water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Right.

To make it easier, you'd fill the holding tank to only the amount you'd be changing. That way it'd stay the same each water change when you mineralize.

Or you could have one huge container of RO water. And pump, as others suggested above, whatever amount you need for your change into a smaller mixing container.
Alright cool,

im looking at doing this to 24 10 gallon tanks and 8 40 gallon tanks for all the shrimp
 

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Sorry I must have misread. So you are basically using your System to constantly change the water through displacement of the old. If that is the case you have a problem especially if you plan to support 560 gallons.

Tap water: you are going to need a larger reservoir or at least a constant source that can be treated BEFORE the tank. IMO and as voiced by other posters, any treatment be it dechlorination or remineralization should be done before the water enters the tank with shrimp. So as Jake said you need some sort of automated dosing machine to dechlorinate because you have ammonia and chloramines. If you had just chlorine you could place an air stone in the tap water reservoir and age the water. You have to judge for how long you will be gone otherwise you reservoir may be empty before your trip is up. With 560 gallons to support you are going to need a huge reservoir.

RO: As a constant flood system over a pure top off system you will need to find a way to constantly remineralize the water to the correct point. It's going to be worse of a problem than with tap water because you need to calculate the flow rates and remineralize based upon the a set rate of inflow and outflow.

You could set up an Ardunio project with a flow meter and auto "dose/remineralize" base upon the water used through your irrigation water change system. But the problem is that RO filter systems are slow and depending on how you time your water change system the RO water in the reservoir may not have been fully replenished and thus you have a higher concentration than you want. I am sure you can program around it with flow meters and switches, but it's becoming more of. Project already.

Another method is that you can buy an aquarium controller and set this all up through the controller and dosing pumps. It's going to be expensive.

Easiest way is to split up the ATO and water changes like I suggested above. It prevents problems caused by evaporation and shrimp tanks don't need to have water changes so frequently. Aiming for stable constant parameters is more important.

Remember you want to change the water parameter of the water going into the system before it enters the system. Most remineralizers will warn against use of the product directly into the tank.

The biggest problem here is we don't know your experience with shrimp keeping and what type of shrimp you plan to keep. If it's the same species on a rack system a linked system with a central sump, with the sump being the only thing topped off might be easier. But even now if you plan to keep neos and bees the parameters are going to be different and the adjusting the system to meet their individual needs is going to be hard.
 
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