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Old 03-21-2005, 11:58 AM   #11
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Well, the ocean gets water changes through evaporation and rainfall, and rivers that dump into the ocean.

Since my tank tries to mimic the ocean...I do frequent (weekly) small (5gallon) water changes on my 40gallon tank. I have no algae, no weird fish problems, my corals do well.

That's my take on it.
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Old 03-21-2005, 12:31 PM   #12
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So PC, what did you have in the tank for the first year? Based on your experience, it sounds like water changes ARE needed but I'm wondering at that interval and how large. I suppose that will fluctuate for every person depending on filtration, tank location, stock, etc..

I guess I'll just have to play with it and see how it goes once I get my tank up and running.

The reason I started this discussion was because I was talking to someone else and they mentioned that they did approximately a 10% water change every week. I asked him why he changed his water so frequently and he stated because, "that's what someone else told me to do and that everything has been running and looking great!"

To me, while I'm sure it was running and looking great, this didn't make sense. He had no idea how long he could go without changing his water and still have his tank look great. Then I seemed to recall that someone else mentioned going a full year without changing their water and that their tank was fine. So here we are.
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Old 03-21-2005, 12:40 PM   #13
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I rarely do water changes. When I do, it is about 10% (5 gallons in a 55 tank). I would say I do a 5 gallon water change about once every... 5-6 months.

I think I'm about ready for one now, I'm seeing a drop in my Ph. All other parameters are fine. I don't have very many corals, etc so I'm not concerned with CA/Alk. My theory on why my tank is ok like this: 55 gallons, CC/LS bed about 4inches deep, 70+ pounds of LR and about 3 fish. Extreemely lightly stocked but a healthy cleanup crew and plenty of natural filtration. The more you put in your tank, the more frequent you will need to do water changes.
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Old 03-21-2005, 12:44 PM   #14
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I've done (3) 10%-15% water changes in the last 9 months and honestly I don't think I needed to do any.
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125 SW
80 lb LR
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Euphyllia, Alveopora, Pachyclauvularia (Metallic Green and Daisy), Frogspawn, Torch, Gold Nepthea, Kenya Tree, Galaxea, Pulsing Xenia, various leather (umbrella, toadstool, fingers, devil fingers, lettuce)
Maroon Clown/White tip LT anemone, Powder Blue Tang, Female Swallow Angel, SixLine Wrasse, Solar Fairy Wrasse, Firefish, Fathead Anthias, Blue Mandarin, 3 Chromis, 3 Green Gobies
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Old 03-21-2005, 12:59 PM   #15
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Ahh! More responses! This is VERY interesting.

So, what I take out of this is either people are over-stocking their tank for the type/amount of filtration they have OR the tank is over-stocked for the total amount of water volume and the 'trace elements' that's needed is getting used up to quickly. (or a combination of the two)

Clown Monarch, what do you have setup for filtration? Also, have you tried doing, say, monthly water changes (or more frequent) and noticed a change in the tank health?
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Old 03-21-2005, 03:12 PM   #16
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I have my tank for now about 4 years, I do Rarely some water change... About 1 each 3 month.

My tank was going fine. The water that I add 3 times/week to compensate the evaporation is Way enough to bring enough of important nutriment in the tank I woud say.
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Old 03-21-2005, 03:21 PM   #17
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I only have about 90 lbs of live rock in a 125, a 20 gallon wet/dry, simple skimmer, and a Fluval 404 with 5-6 lbs. of live rock in the canister. I have a decent animal load and coral load but so far no problems. I don't think I ever tested above zero for ammonia, nitrates or nitrite except when I tried using bio-balls for a few weeks.
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125 SW
80 lb LR
330w PC
Euphyllia, Alveopora, Pachyclauvularia (Metallic Green and Daisy), Frogspawn, Torch, Gold Nepthea, Kenya Tree, Galaxea, Pulsing Xenia, various leather (umbrella, toadstool, fingers, devil fingers, lettuce)
Maroon Clown/White tip LT anemone, Powder Blue Tang, Female Swallow Angel, SixLine Wrasse, Solar Fairy Wrasse, Firefish, Fathead Anthias, Blue Mandarin, 3 Chromis, 3 Green Gobies
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Old 03-21-2005, 03:25 PM   #18
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I've never done more frequent water changes than maybe one every 3-4 months. Reefkeeping is one of those ventures that I consider a "if it ain't broke don't fix it" deal. The more I meddle with a smoothly running tank, the more chance things will die.
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125 SW
80 lb LR
330w PC
Euphyllia, Alveopora, Pachyclauvularia (Metallic Green and Daisy), Frogspawn, Torch, Gold Nepthea, Kenya Tree, Galaxea, Pulsing Xenia, various leather (umbrella, toadstool, fingers, devil fingers, lettuce)
Maroon Clown/White tip LT anemone, Powder Blue Tang, Female Swallow Angel, SixLine Wrasse, Solar Fairy Wrasse, Firefish, Fathead Anthias, Blue Mandarin, 3 Chromis, 3 Green Gobies
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Old 03-21-2005, 03:32 PM   #19
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Interesting discussion, just 1 observation:

Malkore you stated that "Well, the ocean gets water changes through evaporation and rainfall, and rivers that dump into the ocean.

Since my tank tries to mimic the ocean...I do frequent (weekly) small (5gallon) water changes on my 40gallon tank. I have no algae, no weird fish problems, my corals do well"

this would seem more closely related to evaporation and top offs than it would be to a Water change.

Great reading though.
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Old 03-21-2005, 05:39 PM   #20
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I think it really depends on the aquarium. If water cahnges are needed to bring down nitrates and so on then they are definately needed. Myself I do one about once a month. If all my readings are good and my filtration is working properly I don't need to do alot of water changes so I don't. It also depends on what you are keeping. If you have a lot of high water quality demanding species then you have to keep a close eye on your parameters and do changes accordingly. I believe that having external filtration really cuts down the water changes. I was sick for a week and my filter broke on my aquarium and I was too ill to do any water changes or even go get another filter. In a matter of a week I had a crazy hair algae attack. Why? because I had no filtration and I didn't do any water changes. As soon as I got healthy I battled the algae and won. I feel the best water is the water that is in there. If it wasn't then why do livestock die if you do to large of a water change?
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