Posted 07 August 2012 - 05:11 PM
Daft question I know but I have mainly Coldwater fish although I am foraying into Tropical fish at the moment want to get it right so i'll run the risk of making myself look very foolish .......
I am fortunate in that most of my tanks have little if any ammonia and or nitrite registering at all. My 5ft tank is definitely the best in this regard but I was wondering should I only do a water change when ammonia and or nitrite and or nitrate start to register or should I stick to a weekly schedule of water change as i'm doing at the moment?
Posted 07 August 2012 - 07:21 PM
In uncycled tanks, you need to do as many water changes as necessary to stop the ammonia and nitrite from ever going over 0.25ppm. In reality, that means getting them down to zero, as they'll rise again before you can do another change (as the fish will always be producing ammonia). That may mean 80 -90% changes, or even multiple large changes in one day, whatever it takes to get the levels down to zero.
How long have your tanks been running? If they're new, then that would explain why you have ammonia and nitrite present (in cycled, mature tanks, you would never see either of those). If they've been set up for sometime, then you need to find out why you have ammonia/nitrite present at all.
How do you clean/maintain your filters? Do you always remember dechlorinator?
Posted 07 August 2012 - 07:58 PM
I understand about the ammonia and have been reading extensively on various posts about cycling with fish and fishless of course. I haven't tried fishless as yet but will give it go for my next tank and in answer to your questions yes I use dechlorinator (Nutrafin Tap Safe and Tetra's Easy balance too) I am vicula with partery paranoid about that sort of thing. Filters are cleaned when necessary, they are squeezed out into the siphoned tank water. Every month or so the internal filter is removed and all the gunk washed out as it has a tendency to cl around the impellor. I have a cheapie filter that I use to pump water through a 11w Vecton UV Steriliser too. This I treat the same
What brought the question on was I have been doing weekly water changes even if there were no ammonia and nitrite levels registering and normal 40ppm Nitrate showing. I was wondering should I bother changing the water if all seems to be in the correct balance. If so then I was wondering why and of course I was wondering whether I was doing right or was I just about to have a disaster!
Or is the weekly water change a means of keeping the levels from registering? Just curious as to why tbh.
Edited by Mamba, 07 August 2012 - 07:59 PM.
Posted 07 August 2012 - 08:06 PM
But plants and, to a lesser extent, fish deplete certain trace minerals out of the water, so those need replacing with water changes.
Tanks that don't get enough water changes develop something called 'old tank syndrome', where the nitrate gets very high and the water softer and more acidic.
While most fish can adjust to that, if you ever have to do a large water change, because you have a disease, or the tank leaks or something like that, the fish can be killed by the shock of the new water, so the nearer you can keep your tank water to what comes out of your tap, the better.
Posted 07 August 2012 - 08:44 PM
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