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I have a 55G 48" 2x 28W Coralife fixture, Compressed Co2 with Reactor, Dry Dosing what was recommended by Wö£fëñxXx. About 40 fish, 5 shrimp, misc snails and a freshwater clam. 50% water change once a week, daily trimming, feeding and cleaning.

Don't get me wrong I love the growth and I love the way my tank looks.

1 time spent trimming. I have water sprite and Wisteria, both of which it seems I could trim them nearly daily to keep them under control. So if someone could recommend a good background plant that grows slower I would really appreciate that.

2 cleaning... On the water change day, I clean the glass 1st, I fill up 5x 5 gallon buckets and treat them with prime and add my ferts into the new water.(which brings me to another question doesn't prime get rid of nitrate which I am adding to the water?) I then siphon out half of the water in the tank. I take apart the powerfilter and clean it. Put the filter back together again and drop a pump individually into the buckets full of new water and fill up the tank. The entire process takes me about 2-4 hours. Would a canister filter decrease the amount of maintenance I am doing? Any tips that make the WC faster?

Any help would be greatly appeciated! Thanks!
 

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One word.................PHYTHON.

Buckets are a time killer, especially when doing a 50% change weekly due to EI. I use a phython to change the water on my 3 High tec tanks. I remove 50%, trim the plants, add prime to the tank and refill using the phython. I can do a 55 gallon in about 30 minutes.
 

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You shouldn't have to clean the filter every week.

Also, try buying a python so you can hook it up to your sink instead of filling up buckets!
You add the prime directly to your tank then add the tap water in. I've always heard that ideally you should treat the water then add it to the tank, but I've never had a problem by just adding prime to the tank and filling it up.

You can lower C02/lights/dosing and your plants will grow slower.
 

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Children Boogie
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prime works perfectly fine as directed. I just bought a 75G and even I realized a python is necessary.

I'll give the bucket method this though, my arms are nice and chiseled, good muscle definition, because of it.
 
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