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> Aquarium Maintenance, Written by cool fish dude
  Posted: Nov 8 2004, 07:22 PM
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Aquarium Maintenance




So you have gone through the cycling process and are starting to get the hang of the hobby of fish keeping. But you must take care of it by doing maintenance. Maintenance is taking care of your fish by changing water and monitoring it. We do Maintenance because we want to keep are tank clean and our fish very healthy. We maintain our fish tank by taking care and having respect for the fish. Things you should have on hand for Maintenance and to maintain you fish tank are siphon, gravel vacuum, large bucket, towel, chlorine neutralizer, other chemicals that will make you tank safe, and a net. If you keep up on your fish tank and take care of diseases you will have a great looking tank that can make a center piece in a room!

Tank Maintenance
Water changes, gravel vacuuming, algae scrubbing, watching levels of ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH, GH, KH are very important. Without water changes you fish would die from polluted water. For giving your tank a water change you should have the following equipment:


Gravel Vacuum
Large Bucket
Towel
algae scrubber
chlorine neutralizer
And any other elements that you add to the tap water such as
pH up nitrite control or any other products that need to be added to make you tap water good for fish

Id first make sure the power is turned off for 15 minutes before removing the water. If you dont unplug the heater it will over heat and crack and break. If you dont unplug the filter before a water change it wont suck up water and it will over heat and fry the motor. Id then take off the hood and scrub the algae off the glass and rocks with the algae scrubber. BUT make sure it is for glass if you have glass and if you have an acrylic use acrylic scrubber. The acrylic scrubber is coarser and rougher on the glass. If you have an acrylic tank, use the Kent Pro scraper (plastic) or the algae glove. For particularly stubborn residue on the glass, use a razor blade to scrape it off. Take care not to cut yourself, or scratch the glass. If your aquarium is acrylic, use a special plastic razor blade, as standard razors will scratch acrylic. Make sure to do this before you clean the gravel, because when the cleaning the gravel you suck up the algae instead of it just staying in the tank. I always put a towel under the bucket that will hold the water getting siphoned out of the tank, just in case anything slops over it will fall onto the towel and not the carpet. (This ensures you don't get in trouble with parents or spouses, I had learned the hard way)
What a good idea to do is with your removed fish water is to pour it into your garden, there is a lot of nutrients in the water, it acts like fertilizer. Also when you rinse out your filter cartridge never rinse it out under tap water, instead take some water from your tank and rinse it out in that. If you did it under the tap the chlorine would kill the bacteria in the filter.
When putting water back into the tank make sure to add chlorine neutralizer to the water to remove it, otherwise you could poison your fish. Remember to add it before you put the water in, to give it time to act and mix in. Also try to get the pH and temperature as close as possible to your tank water before putting in, to minimize any shock the fish have. When pouring the water into the tank put your hand underneath the stream of water as you pour, so you don't stir up all your gravel. Also you should check you pH nitrite nitrate ammonia KH and GH about every month Id guess. These tips and info should help you maintain a healthy happy fish tank.


Filter maintenance
This is the one aquarium maintenance task you must NOT put off - the life of your fishes could quite literally depend on it. For canister filters, change the filter medium as often as the filter manufacturer recommends; wash out sponges but NOT in chlorinated tapwater - use either some water taken from the tank (discard it after you've used it to clean the filter) or treat a bowlful of lukewarm tapwater with chlorine remover (sometimes sold as "new tank treatment" solution) and use that. If you have to replace some of the sponges, never replace them all at once. When next you change the filters, change the oldest of the sponges and keep rotating them so you never run out of bacteria.
Undergravel filters require very little maintenance beyond raking the gravel gently once a week to ensure that it doesn't get packed down too firmly for the water to be drawn through it easily, and ensuring that the air-lift is working properly. If this is in the form of a power lift there is very little
maintenance to be done; an external air pump linked to an airstone in the filter lift tube needs to have its inlet filter changed occasionally and the airstone may need changing from time to time if the flow diminishes because it is getting blocked

These next things are things you should do daily, weekly, monthly, every 6 weeks to 2 months and periodically

Daily Feed your fishes daily. Check the fishes whilst feeding them - count heads, look for signs of injury or illness. If necessary, move any fish showing signs of illness to a "hospital tank" for treatment, and remove any dead fish. Check the water temperature.

Weekly (or bi-weekly) Do a partial water change. The amount of water to change depends on the number of fish you keep, but can vary from 10 to 50 percent. Make sure to treat the fresh water with chlorine / chloramine remover and adjust the temperature to match that of your tank water before adding to your tank. (EDIT: Neon Man 7-15-10)

Monthly Change carbon filter. (If you use one). Trim overgrown plants; replace any which have been eaten away by the herbivores in your tank.

Every six weeks to two months Change 30% or 40% of the biological filter (if you use one) (which is usually in the form of blue sponge material.).

Periodically Consider rehousing (or even rehoming) any fish which have outgrown their present home. Re-stock according to losses to maintain aquarium population balance.




This post has been edited by Neon Man on Jul 16 2010, 12:21 AM
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SA-OceanDevil
Posted: Dec 21 2004, 10:18 PM
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Water changes will produce better growth and health. Simple fact.
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Pekemom
Posted: Dec 22 2004, 08:47 PM
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I wanna come back as my dog!


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QUOTE
I have never done a water change as a matter of routine. If necessary, I will top up with fresh water to replace any which has evaporated (see above) but I do not deliberately remove water from the tank.


Hmm. that's funny. I was thinking the same thing today, as we were getting ready to leave on vacation. The water in my one 37 gal is absolutely crystal clear. I went ahead and changed out five gal anyway. But the thought did cross my mind, that I could do just a top-off and leave well enough alone...Old habits die hard, though, and I really want to keep that tank clear - as I'm struggling through an algae outbreak of some type in the other 37 gal...

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  Posted: Dec 23 2004, 05:46 AM
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Water changes are a pain in the rear, and messy.
Kinda like picking your dogs poop up.
You dont wanna do it. But ya have to.
Because ..... oh nvm
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Posted: Jul 19 2005, 06:36 PM
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If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts


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just rereading through this for ideas on my "buying a "new" used aquarium profile" i noticed Some aquarists advocate a partial water change - some even as often as weekly. In all the thirty-odd years in which I have been keeping fish, I have never done a water change as a matter of routine. If necessary, I will top up with fresh water to replace any which has evaporated (see above) but I do not deliberately remove water from the tank. The water continues to be crystal clear and odor-free and the fish continue to thrive. Maybe my attention to filter maintenance has something to do with it, but my tank systems run just fine on the water they have already in them. My dad must have edited this when he was on at some point. just to say
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Posted: Jul 19 2005, 10:28 PM
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Monkey See, Monkey Do...


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*LOL* I was going to say in "your thirty odd years of fish keeping"....*looks at your profile and notices that your only 20*

Glad to see your dad joining in, why don't you get him to join the forum. thumbup.gif
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Posted: Jul 20 2005, 03:55 AM
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If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts


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he doesn't realy go onto the comp much so...

This post has been edited by cool fish dude on Jul 20 2005, 03:55 AM
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Posted: Jul 20 2005, 04:37 PM
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i've been adopted :)


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QUOTE (wild-tiger @ Jul 19 2005, 11:28 PM)
*LOL* I was going to say in "your thirty odd years of fish keeping"....*looks at your profile and notices that your only 20*

Glad to see your dad joining in, why don't you get him to join the forum. thumbup.gif

lol i did wonder about the age diff! lmao.gif
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