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Fish for the Planted Aquarium Planted Aquarium Fish - Discuss which type of aquarium fish are best suited for the aquatic plant environment you have created. Create a natural home for aquarium fish using aquatic plants.

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Old 07-24-2019, 02:45 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am I doing Water Changes Wrong?

What types of fish deaths? What were the symptoms?
Have you tested your ammonia, nitrIte, and nitrate levels recently between water changes?

Issues with proper dosing of Prime would be obvious immediately while doing water change itself and shortly thereafter. Fish gasping for breath at water surface, clamped fins, and in extreme cases- a quick death.
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Old 07-26-2019, 12:48 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am I doing Water Changes Wrong?

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Originally Posted by safina View Post
What types of fish deaths? What were the symptoms?
Have you tested your ammonia, nitrIte, and nitrate levels recently between water changes?

Issues with proper dosing of Prime would be obvious immediately while doing water change itself and shortly thereafter. Fish gasping for breath at water surface, clamped fins, and in extreme cases- a quick death.
I have never seen signs of chlorine/chloramine poisoning after a water change so I don't think dosing Prime was the real issue. That being said, I have increased the amount of Prime I dose during water changes. I do still believe that dosing Prime for the entire volume of the aquarium is a little excessive if the goal is only to de-chlorinate the replacement water. Now I am dosing for the amount of replacement water times two. For instance, if doing a 15% water change of 75 gallons (0.15 x 75 gallons = 11.25 gallons) then I will dose Prime for 22.5 gallons (22.5 gallons = 11.25 gallons x 2). That gives me plenty of wiggle room if I estimated incorrectly the amount of water changed in the aquarium. So far so good!

I religiously kept an "aquarium log" at the time I was having the most issues 2 years ago. I just reviewed it and knowing what I do now, I think I see the pattern that may have caused the issues.

I was keeping a 5-gallon and a 3-gallon aquarium. I was testing water parameters every 3-7 days and doing all of the regular maintenance you would on a larger aquarium. In order to keep the substrate looking clean, my weekly water changes ended up being large (50-80%). I was also just learning about EI dosing and the finer details of fertilizing plants. Between large water changes and dosing fertilizers, the GH would fluctuate between 7-12 German degrees and the KH between 3-4 degrees. I had read somewhere that top off water should only be RO water to prevent mineral buildup over time--so I started messing around with RO water. Lessons learned:
--Most people know KH can only be raised slowly (about 0.2 every 24 hours). Now I know GH also has to be raised slowly (about 0.5 every 24 hours).
--Don't mess with RO water unless you really know what you're doing. Water treatment is way more complicated than I thought it would be.
--Try not to do more than a 20% water change per 24 hours. More than that may stress inhabitants (i.e., invertebrates such as shrimp are especially sensitive to sudden changes in total dissolved solids).

The types of disease I saw varied and I think it all came down to disease-susceptibility caused by a stressful environment that I inadvertently created.
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Old 07-28-2019, 09:14 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am I doing Water Changes Wrong?

I'd like help setting up this calculation if possible because I think it'd be useful.

So let's say 75 gallons of aquarium water is at 6 degrees GH. You want to decrease it a nudge with a 15% water change. You want to ensure that the total change in GH in the aquarium does not exceed 0.5-0.6 degrees GH to protect the inhabitants. You plan to make the replacement water 5 degrees GH.

15% of 75 gallons = 11.25 gallons

You'd be adding 11.25 gallons replacement water at 5 degrees GH to 63.75 gallons aquarium water at 6 degrees GH. When mixed together, what is the new GH?

I know in the above example the answer would be somewhere between 5-6 degrees GH. But how do you calculate the exact answer? This calculation would just be for estimation purposes, like doing proportions.
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Old 07-28-2019, 10:22 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am I doing Water Changes Wrong?

I've added 10% of untreated water into a tank without issues.
I now run incoming water through a duel stage house filter with 5 micron carbon filters. It removes any chlorine and saves me on add dechlor chemicals.
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Old 07-29-2019, 10:37 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am I doing Water Changes Wrong?

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Originally Posted by christinamac910 View Post
I'd like help setting up this calculation if possible because I think it'd be useful.

So let's say 75 gallons of aquarium water is at 6 degrees GH. You want to decrease it a nudge with a 15% water change. You want to ensure that the total change in GH in the aquarium does not exceed 0.5-0.6 degrees GH to protect the inhabitants. You plan to make the replacement water 5 degrees GH.

15% of 75 gallons = 11.25 gallons

You'd be adding 11.25 gallons replacement water at 5 degrees GH to 63.75 gallons aquarium water at 6 degrees GH. When mixed together, what is the new GH?

I know in the above example the answer would be somewhere between 5-6 degrees GH. But how do you calculate the exact answer? This calculation would just be for estimation purposes, like doing proportions.
(11.5 x 5)+(63.75 x 6) / 75 = 5.9 If you replaced 50% of the 6 dKH water with an equal amount of 5 dKH water, you would have 5.5 dKH water.
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Old 08-04-2019, 06:18 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: Am I doing Water Changes Wrong?

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Originally Posted by hoppycalif View Post
(11.5 x 5)+(63.75 x 6) / 75 = 5.9 If you replaced 50% of the 6 dKH water with an equal amount of 5 dKH water, you would have 5.5 dKH water.
Awesome--thank you!! That calculation gives me a lot more flexibility than I originally thought. I'll definitely keep this handy.
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