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Is there any way to test for when to change water
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ozziegt
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Joined: 07 Mar 2005

PostPosted: 2005.04.17(Sun)10:10    Post subject: Is there any way to test for when to change water Reply with quote

Is there any kind of test that can be done to know when to change the water? I have read that water changes are needed to remove nitrates (my plants do this), and to keep the buffering capacity up (my tap water doesn't have any buffering capacity any way, I add a chemical buffer), and to remove toxins like phosphorous (again, my plants use this up). So what else can I do to check when it's time for a water change?
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Darkblade48
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Joined: 21 Jun 2004
Location: Toronto, Ontario. Canada

PostPosted: 2005.04.17(Sun)11:53    Post subject: Reply with quote

Experience. Smile

But then again, you should be doing water changes once a week, or at the very least once every other week anyways, so I don't see a need to "test" for when it's required to change the water.
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uLtRa
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Joined: 11 Apr 2003
Location: Southend, UK

PostPosted: 2005.04.17(Sun)14:10    Post subject: Reply with quote

The more you waterchange the better and happier your fish are, so it all depends on how seriously you take your hobby. Ideally I would waterchange every 10 minutes but obviously I can't so every 2 or 3 days has to suffice for me.
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ozziegt
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Joined: 07 Mar 2005

PostPosted: 2005.04.17(Sun)16:58    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well that doesn't really answer my question. I guess the root of my question is what necessitates water changes? It must be something besides the three things I mentioned earlier.
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ozziegt
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Joined: 07 Mar 2005

PostPosted: 2005.04.17(Sun)17:00    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK so I found this in the article on water changes on this site:

Quote:
If your system shows little fluctuation in pH and little rise in nitrate, you can schedule your water changes according to declines in general hardness or buffering capacity readings, or visible cues such as change in water color (slight yellowing) or the buildup of biofilm or algae on the glass which dulls your view of your fish. If you know about how long it takes before you see these indicators, you can schedule the change beforehand, so that your aquarium never looks like it needs maintenance.
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Chaffe
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Joined: 21 Feb 2005
Location: Hong Kong

PostPosted: 2005.04.17(Sun)20:00    Post subject: Reply with quote

As nitrates are 'generally' the end product of the nitrogen cycle I monitor the nitrate concentration and change when it gets to 40ish ppm. In my case once a week if I'm lucky Confused

'Generally' means not a heavily planted lightly stocked tank.

Edit: From reading your post again it looks like the above is your situation. Embarassed
For what it's worth, I have read that water changes are good to 'reset' the water parameters back towards 'normal'. Preventing any long term build up of more difficult to detect toxins/inbalances.
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ozziegt
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Joined: 07 Mar 2005

PostPosted: 2005.04.17(Sun)20:29    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah I'll probably change the water weekly anyway...in a 5g it only takes a few minutes anyway. Just wondering if there was any way to check for it...I guess not.
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Chaffe
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Joined: 21 Feb 2005
Location: Hong Kong

PostPosted: 2005.04.17(Sun)21:36    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah I have remembered where I read that. It was not quite the same as I said so forgive the error.

I think was in the article or the discussion regarding the Poor Mans Dupla Drops (PMDD). I think the idea was that with the regular water changes you could reset all the minerals and fertilizers back to optimum. Avoiding a build up of any one fert or mineral that wasn't being completely used up by your plants during the time between PMDD dosing.

Similar but not the same as I stated on my previous post. Apologies.
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Josh Hansen
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Joined: 20 Feb 2005
Location: Dayboro, Queensland, Australia

PostPosted: 2005.04.18(Mon)1:53    Post subject: Water change Reply with quote

I test the aquarium water for quality deteriotation in ammonia, nitrite, pH etc and if the water quality worsen I do a water change or with in the fortnight time frame where I think the water quality has worsen in time period.

Is this the information your after.

from Josh
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ozziegt
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Joined: 07 Mar 2005

PostPosted: 2005.04.18(Mon)8:28    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another thing I realized is that if you don't change the water, as you keep refilling the tank due to evaporation you are going to get a build up of all the chemicals / minerals in the water, which isn't a good thing either.
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