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How much water to take out in water change, and otocinclus

I keep 6 different tanks of different sizes ( 3 gallon to 55 gallon), and a 40 gallon pond. The pond almost never has any nitrates but phosphates do build up. I don't change the water in the pond that much.

I figure how much water to change based on nitrate levels. If there's relativley low to zero nitrates all the time I'll do a small water change/cleanup of overgrown plants/mulm at the bottom every so often when needed. Typically this is once per week but some of the tanks have low nitrates so I don't do them as often, or lower amount of a change.
 
Hello Ram. There's more to the need for large and frequent water changes. It's not only about the build up of nitrogen from the waste produced by the fish and plants. The nutrients in the water need to be replenished too. The fish and plants are constantly using up nutrients in the water and if the water isn't changed regularly, the fish and plants are starved of those nutrients they need to remain healthy. I keep large tanks and have a 300 gallon outdoor tank. I remove and replace half the water every few days. This guarantees steady water conditions and water that's near nitrogen free and always high in healthy nutrients.

10
 
I figure how much water to change based on nitrate levels.
I'll let Byron say why this is not a good way of doing things.
Many aquarists wrongly assume that a rise in nitrates (or a drop in pH) is the trigger for a water change. But this is waiting too late; the health of the fish and the aquarium’s biology has already been compromised if it shows up in these tests. The whole idea behind regular partial water changes is to prevent this from occurring, by maintaining a truly stable biological system.
The whole of Byron's article is a sticky in Tropical Discussion.
 
Hello Ram. There's more to the need for large and frequent water changes. It's not only about the build up of nitrogen from the waste produced by the fish and plants. The nutrients in the water need to be replenished too. The fish and plants are constantly using up nutrients in the water and if the water isn't changed regularly, the fish and plants are starved of those nutrients they need to remain healthy. I keep large tanks and have a 300 gallon outdoor tank. I remove and replace half the water every few days. This guarantees steady water conditions and water that's near nitrogen free and always high in healthy nutrients.

10
I'll let Byron say why this is not a good way of doing things.

The whole of Byron's article is a sticky in Tropical Discussion.

I completely agree that frequent water changes are a good thing for all the reasons that 10 Tanks is saying and Byron posted about. I've followed that credence since reading it in the past. I don't agree that large changes are needed if the nitrates are lower. I agree that more and larger water changes are beneficial, but I'm also not trying to spend that much time doing water changes.

Even Byron says in the stickied post.

Byron: The volume and frequency do somewhat depend upon the specifics of the aquarium, but as will be evident throughout this article, there can be no doubt whatsoever that the more water that is changed and the more frequently, the healthier will be the fish. And water stability is virtually impossible otherwise.

This is why I use the nitrate level and amount of water to change when it does come time to change it, which is typically one time per week, sometimes one time every two weeks. My nitrates typically always stay below 20 ppm, with some staying a zero.

I dose ferts for the plants weekly and use root tabs.

The reason the pond is more stable atm is due to fresh rain water. In the dry season I will definitely have to do more water changes in it. I should've clarified that in my previous comment on hte pond not needing water changes that much.
 
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Hello again. It's just common sense to devote the most time to the thing that makes up the largest part of the tank keeping hobby and that's the water. I've followed an aggressive water changing routine for many years and over time, you develop a system where you can remove and replace half the water in a large tank in about 40 minutes. By simply removing and replacing most of the water every few days, you can postpone or even stop doing other things that used to take up time. For instance filters, filter maintenance, vacuuming and water testing.

10
 

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