Easy water changing...

Discussion in 'Hardware & DIY' started by bobtail, 14 Jul 2007.

  1. bobtail

    bobtail Member

    Messages:
    29
    Location:
    Wirral NW UK
    Ok has anyone got diy plans or even just a diagram of what you use for easy water changes.
    Im curious as to how you dose for declorinator while changing straight from the tap?

    Also getting the chemistry to match the original water, How?

    At the moment Im only changing 15, 20% every other week because of these challenges and want to step it up a bit.

    thanks
     
  2. 2pods

    2pods Member

    Messages:
    138
    Location:
    Gourock
    I use one of these
    http://www.aquatics-online.co.uk/catalogue/water-changers.asp

    The Python is great no more buckets for me !

    I just add the dechlor as its re-filling using my mixer tap to match tempertures.

    Peter
     
  3. Nosnibor

    Nosnibor Newly Registered

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    Berkshire
    I second that, I've had mine for about a onth now and I do more PWCs that I have ever done :eek:) I can't stop it's so easy hee hee

    Martin :D
     
  4. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,937
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    Hi 2pods,
    That sounds great but what happens if you use collected rainwater or RO? Water removal would be OK but filling would still be problematic wouldn't it? I imagine your tapwater GH/TDS is faily low or you use high water TDS with success?

    I use the electric version of this idea. I don't have a schematic for bobtail but the idea is simple. I use a powerhead connected to my long tube. The tube either heads out to the vegetable garden in summer or to the kitchen drain in winter. The powerehead is only needed to get the flow going because what I do is unplug and disconect the powerhead while submerged and attach a tube with a grill (I use an old shepards crook with the grill that came with my Eheim). In this way you can actually vacuum the gravel without polling up too much gravel. If I don't feel like vacuuming then I leave everything alone until I've removed the amout that I wanted.

    When that's done I connect the powerhead to a second tube routed from the RO/rainwater collection reservoir to the tank and then plug it in. Depending on your distances you need either a few meters or lots of meters but either way there is no need for buckets and no sucking to start the siphon. Sure, it isn't as slick as the python but it still beats buckets. This is problematic if your water collector is in the basement and the tank is upstairs. Then the little powerhead cant push that column height so then I'd use a stronger pond pump.

    The python homepage has great entertainment value. The webpage design is best described as "1980s arrested development", and my favorite FAQ quote is;

    "...How much water do I take out? We recommend only a 5 to 10% water change every other week. Removal of too much water at one time may stress your fish and result in disease or death..."

    I thought that was hillarious and at first I figured I must have reached the Monty Python website...

    Cheers,
     
  5. Nosnibor

    Nosnibor Newly Registered

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    Berkshire
    Ha ha ha I love it. The woman demostrating it looks like an 80s throwback too :)

    Martin
     
  6. 2pods

    2pods Member

    Messages:
    138
    Location:
    Gourock
    5% to 10% ?
    Not worth unravelling the Python for.
    25% or nowt :lol:
     
  7. Matt Holbrook-Bull

    Matt Holbrook-Bull Founder

    Messages:
    963
    Location:
    Dorset, UK
    stick a hosepipe in the outlet hose.. throw hose out the window.. pump away. if you have a garden, put a water butt outside the window and save the water, garden plants love it.

    stick hose in inlet, put hosepipe end in the container of water (whatever that might be).. pump away.

    I actually hosepipe the water right off the tap, straight into the tank.. takes me about 10 mins to do 60% weekly. for me, its 50% or nothing :) as per full EI
     
  8. bobtail

    bobtail Member

    Messages:
    29
    Location:
    Wirral NW UK
    And then dose with dechlorinator?
    Im just worried about my fish and shrimps I presume the plants can deal with chlorine in small doses?
     
  9. Matt Holbrook-Bull

    Matt Holbrook-Bull Founder

    Messages:
    963
    Location:
    Dorset, UK
    I dont actually have any chlorine in my water, but Id do it this way even if I did, just add the dechlorinator BEFORE you add the replacement water.. job done. I normally get the tap going, having matched the temperature by hand (im quite good at it now, can do it within 1 degree), then use the outflow to wash out the measuring lid.
     
  10. Ed Seeley

    Ed Seeley Member

    Messages:
    3,262
    Location:
    Nottingham
    Where do you get your water from then Flora? I thought all UK tap water had to be chlorinated for Health and Safety reasons to prevent water bourne diseases and parasites, like Legionella?
     
  11. Matt Holbrook-Bull

    Matt Holbrook-Bull Founder

    Messages:
    963
    Location:
    Dorset, UK
    not the case. I have a full water report from Wessex water with the assurance that they dont add any type of chloramination.

    Scary NO3 though huh?
     
  12. Ed Seeley

    Ed Seeley Member

    Messages:
    3,262
    Location:
    Nottingham
    They say no Chloramination. That means they don't add Chloramine; that's different from Chlorine as it's bound to an ammonia molecule which stabilises it and makes it more persistent. I might be wrong on the Chlorine thing, but I'm pretty sure.

    High Nitrate readings are one reason why I use an RO unit. My killis and Dwarf cichlids don't appreciate levels like that!
     
  13. Matt Holbrook-Bull

    Matt Holbrook-Bull Founder

    Messages:
    963
    Location:
    Dorset, UK
    interesting, they told me they didnt as Id asked specifically for those readings.

    for me the added nitrates are a bonus, as its one less thing to add for EI. My tank grows far better on tap water than it ever did using RO. Also, carting about 120litres of RO every week just isnt feasable.. and Im not prepared to suffer the wastage of an RO unit, water bills are high enough as it is.
     
  14. rjtaylor

    rjtaylor Newly Registered

    Messages:
    13
    Location:
    Eltham, London
    So is it a load of rubbish that you shouldn't use water directly from your homes' hot water system? Thought this could contain high levels of metals, so best to heat up cold water before addition to your tank?
     
  15. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,937
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    I wouldn't quite say "a load of" rubbish. I'd just say it's "mostly" rubbish. There are maybe a handful of species that are sensitive to the level of dissolved solids. I've just set up my tank yesterday and simply dragged the garden hose over and turned it on. I'm 100% with Flora on this one. I hate water changes and RO greatly complicates life for larger tank volumes.

    Cheers,
     
  16. SuperColey1

    SuperColey1 Member

    Messages:
    2,668
    Location:
    Lincoln UK
    Hot Water

    I don't se
     
  17. Dave Spencer

    Dave Spencer Member

    Messages:
    1,389
    Location:
    N. Wales
    Re: Hot Water

    My Otos and Corys know where I add the water during a change, and they sit there waiting for the stream of coldwater. I think they would be pretty upset if the water I added was the same as the tank.

    No spawning yet, though. :arghh:

    Dave.
     
    Alexander Belchenko likes this.
  18. Ed Seeley

    Ed Seeley Member

    Messages:
    3,262
    Location:
    Nottingham
    Be careful though, I did a 50% water change with water from my butt of RO water in the garage in the winter and stupidly, without thinking, I added it straight to my nano tank. The water dropped over 10oC and my Cardinal tetras all lay comatose on the bottom. Thinking I'd killed them I picked them out and put them in some of the old tank water and they all came around none the worse for wear - they didn't even get any subsequent problems like White spot. I must breed them tough here in Nottingham!

    I imagine tap water could get almost as cold during winter. Before I got my RO unit I would add some hot water just to take the edge off the cold water in winter and never had a problem, even before we had a combi boiler fitted.

    I agree most fish seem to like a bit of cool water, even my Tangyikans did and they aren't supposed to like unstable conditions.
     
  19. bobtail

    bobtail Member

    Messages:
    29
    Location:
    Wirral NW UK
    I remember reading somewhere that in the rio negro I think it was at some times of the year they have ice floating down the river. :wideyed:

    Also like other comments maybe the fish associate this with spawning time?
     
  20. Matt Holbrook-Bull

    Matt Holbrook-Bull Founder

    Messages:
    963
    Location:
    Dorset, UK
    this is turning into a facinating thread guys..

    what do you think about the temperature difference on inverts like Shrimps? I have a handful of shrimps and Ive never had them worry about a water change, infact, they seem to be far more active for the hours after a waterchange. I do try to match the water as best as I can, but usually I end up with the tank at about -+1C.

    I might do your idea of cold out of the tap, trouble is my cold is extremely cold as its pumped through a thick chalk hillside first, so I might lift it slightly.

    With regards to the rumour of not using hot out of the taps as far as I can see is bumpkus, most of our houses are now fitted with combi boilers, whose supply of hot water is always fresh as its heated on the fly, so to speak. So the water doesnt sit around in the taps like it would do with an immersion heater system with a header tank. Even then though, most of our systems are fairly new as standards are far higher now then they were even 10 years ago, so all the piping is fairly new and much more resistant to corrosion.
     

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