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Lauren Olivia

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So, my current plan is to buy 25L of RO water when I can get to the lfs next week. I can’t really buy more at once as they charge for the containers. I’m not an adult so have to rely on my parents being able to take me. I can then use this to do a 50% water change with half RO and half tap water? Or would I be best only using half the RO water then half again so parameters don’t change too quickly? And I assume I’m best mixing the two waters together and dose the tap water with dechlorinator still. Sorry for all the questions, just want to make sure I get this right.
 

seangee

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So, my current plan is to buy 25L of RO water when I can get to the lfs next week. I can’t really buy more at once as they charge for the containers.
I got 4 of those 25l containers from Amazon for less than the LFS charges for 1. I just took my own containers for filling. 25 litres is about right per week if you change 50% of your water using half RO and half tap water.
Hint: You can also get those containers in 10 litre size. My LFS charges half the price of a 25l for a 10l - so it works out slightly costlier. But the 10l ones are so much easier to manage.
 
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Lauren Olivia

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I got 4 of those 25l containers from Amazon for less than the LFS charges for 1. I just took my own containers for filling. 25 litres is about right per week if you change 50% of your water using half RO and half tap water.
Hint: You can also get those containers in 10 litre size. My LFS charges half the price of a 25l for a 10l - so it works out slightly costlier. But the 10l ones are so much easier to manage.
Thank you! I’ll have a look! I had a quick glance before but couldn’t find them much cheaper but if I can find them that would be a lot more convenient.
 
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essjay

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Ah right, all I’ve heard before is that you can judge how much water you need to change how often by your nitrates. Mine still don’t start to go above 5-10 in two weeks so I assumed it was okay to do it every two weeks to keep these low. Out of interest, what other substances build up? At the moment I do about 50% every other week so I’ll think of increasing that. This was the kind of information I found along with local fish keepers and stores advice when I was learning https://www.aquariumcoop.com/blogs/aquarium/how-to-change-aquarium-water-correctly
In a tank with no live plants nitrate is an indicator that water needs to be changed. But when there are live plants in the tank, little or no nitrate is made as the plants take up the ammonia and this can lull the fish keeper into thinking water changes are not needed.

We excrete most of our waste products as urine. Fish can excrete them straight into the water. I once worked in a hospital pathology lab and we tested urine for a lot of things - fish will excrete similar, if not the same, things. They also secrete hormones into the water as communication with other fish. All of these build up in the water between water changes.
Water changes also replenish things that are taken up from the water by fish and plants
 
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Lauren Olivia

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In a tank with no live plants nitrate is an indicator that water needs to be changed. But when there are live plants in the tank, little or no nitrate is made as the plants take up the ammonia and this can lull the fish keeper into thinking water changes are not needed.

We excrete most of our waste products as urine. Fish can excrete them straight into the water. I once worked in a hospital pathology lab and we tested urine for a lot of things - fish will excrete similar, if not the same, things. They also secrete hormones into the water as communication with other fish. All of these build up in the water between water changes.
Water changes also replenish things that are taken up from the water by fish and plants
Okay, thank you, that’s so much easier to understand now. So would you recommend introducing the RO water to my water changes gradually or would I be okay starting with a 50% water change with half RO and half tap water? Oh and can you leave RO water hanging around in the container for a week or does it have to be used quicker?
 

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Doing a 50% water change with half RO half tap mix means a quarter of the tank will then be RO so the hardness will be reduced by a quarter at one go. Maybe start with a mix of quarter RO, three quarters tap for the first water change, then half and half for the next one.

I don't know about keeping RO for a week (I have soft water so luckily I don't need to use it) - someone who uses it will be able to give a proper answer.
 
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Lauren Olivia

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Doing a 50% water change with half RO half tap mix means a quarter of the tank will then be RO so the hardness will be reduced by a quarter at one go. Maybe start with a mix of quarter RO, three quarters tap for the first water change, then half and half for the next one.

I don't know about keeping RO for a week (I have soft water so luckily I don't need to use it) - someone who uses it will be able to give a proper answer.
Right, I shall do that then. Thank you so much for all your help.
 

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You should keep a supply of RO water on hand just in case of emergencies where you have to do a water change right away like sick fish or an ammonia spike in your tank.
 
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Lauren Olivia

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Ok, I think I might purchase two containers tomorrow then so I can get more if it’s ok sitting for a while. I couldn’t find much info so just wondered if it would go stagnant. Going to get some tomorrow so hopefully the better parameters will help them, lots of them are still looking perfectly healthy. I knew our water was hard but I didn’t realise it was that hard!
thank you so much everyone for the help, everyone here is so knowledgeable and nice :)
 

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