I had some store credit at a particular LFS so I bought some Lee’s brand water changer parts to use with my existing gravel siphon. The parts I bought were the part that screws into the faucet- which came with a plastic aerator adaptor, a shut off valve (placed at the tank end between the siphon hose and the screw in hose), and a female threaded hose to tubing adaptor.
I went to Home Depot to get a 25’ hose and noticed that many of the shorter hoses are now made out of recycled material and state clearly on the label “not for potable water”. But I found an RV/camping hose that was safe for drinking water for close to the same price.
When I got home I realized that on two of the three sinks I planned on using this with the aerator threads were too far recessed for the plastic adaptor to even make contact with the threads, and on the kitchen sink, the threads should have fit, but I could not get them lined up to screw them in. So I ordered this: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
Even the metal adaptor available at the LFS or one available at HD would not have been long enough to fit the first two sinks.
The second time I used it I had a hard time screwing the hose into the part that attaches to the faucet and realized I had cross-threaded the threads and mangled them up pretty bad. So then I ordered this quick release adaptor, so I could screw it in and leave it on: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
(This adaptor is pretty awesome)
I was all good to go on my basement and kitchen sinks, but when it came time to try it out on my newer bathroom sink upstairs it turned out the flow was not strong enough to create enough suction to start the siphon, so to drain I had to hang the hose out the window. It did work fine for refilling though.
Even on the downstairs sinks the suction is not strong enough to really clean out the gravel, but I don’t really need to do that too often. When I do need to do that I will either drain the hose outside on the first and second floor, or to the floor drain in the basement. To help get the siphon started I may later on add a little squeeze pump like this: http://www.amazon.com/Lees-Squeeze-B...ump+for+python
So while this has cost me more than I hoped it would, I would consider it very worthwhile. With the 5-gallon bucket method it was very difficult to pour the water in slowly enough not to disturb the substrate. Refilling the hang-on back filters is also much easier.