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Old 12-28-2005, 11:35 PM   #1
itsadryheat1
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daily water change with LiterMeter advice


I have had my new reef tank up for about 3 weeks now. I have a 120 with 30 gallon sump, 120 gallons of total water after rock and sand. I just ordered a litermeter III dosing pump to do my roughly 1.5 gallon per day top off. I will have a 55 gallon barrel filed with ro/di that will feed this pump. I will be able to top off a month without touching anything if necessary. I also ordered the water xchange module and I wil also have a 55 barrel filled with pre-made saltwater. For those not familiar with the LiterMeter III, one pump will pump new saltwater into the tank, while another pump will remove an equal amount down the drain. The removal and replacement is done over equal amounts over a 24 hour period. For example a 1 gallon a day exchange would be roughly 5 ounces of water an hour, every hour. This way there are no changes in temp, salinity, etc., that will be noticable by the creatures in the tank. Does anyone have experience with this type of waterchanging? A 10% change a week is roughly 12 gallons a week, or 48 gallons a month. This is about 2 gallons a day waterchange. Any opinions would be appreciated as I am new to this and want to set up the easiest and best system I can. Is 2 gallons a day sufficient? Any downside to doing daily changes?
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Old 12-28-2005, 11:41 PM   #2
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Sound great to me. but I have never used one.
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Old 12-28-2005, 11:48 PM   #3
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The only downside is that you won't get the same efficiency. Less frequent water changes take out more "good water" than less frequent large water changes. In other words if you take out 1 gallon per day, more of that water will be "good water" than if you did one large water change. There is an erticle out there which illustrates this, I'll try to find it. BUT, if you have some SW to waste, it's a good thing because it will put less stress on your system than a massive water change, and it's easier! I'd do it. How much is that system, and where can I see some specs?

Also, how do you account for evap?
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Old 12-29-2005, 12:04 AM   #4
itsadryheat1
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Do a search on spectrapure LiterMeter III. As far as top-off I will have a separate pump putting in amounts of RO/DI equal to the evaporation. There is a pressure sensor so you cannot overfill. A second pump will remove saltwater, and a third will add saltwater. Waterchanges and top off are all controlled by the same controller. It is expensive, about $600 for all, but very safe for top=off's, and a good way to easily change water. As far as removing mostly good water, I don't quite follow. If I am removing mostly good water, then my system must be good water, right? If I can change it before it gets bad, isn't that a good thing? Thanks
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Old 12-29-2005, 12:07 AM   #5
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Quote:
If I am removing mostly good water, then my system must be good water, right?
Exactly! So why would you remove it? When doing water changes peridiodically, you are removing more bad water, because all the water has had time to get bad.
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Old 12-29-2005, 12:10 AM   #6
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Here's the article: http://www.advancedaquarist.com/issu...2004/short.htm
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Old 12-29-2005, 12:23 AM   #7
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Mike, I see your point. The article uses a hypothetical about a contamination in the tank. And there example was when doing a water change it is better to remove the old, then add the new. In stead of adding the new, and then removing the old water that includes the new. He does go on and conclude that a 20 or 30% is better than a 10 or 50. I see the logic but it seems that if by doing daily changes I can keep the water always good, why wait until it goes bad, just so I can remove bad water. It seems that my coral and fish would be better off living in a stabe "good water" environment then going from good to bad to good, etc. all the time. Thanks for your feedback, this is why I posted.
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Old 12-29-2005, 12:24 AM   #8
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You're right, it is better. It just wastes more water.
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Old 12-29-2005, 12:31 AM   #9
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But that is the beauty of it, it is the same amount of water. I have a water volume of 120 Gallons. If I do a 20% every 2 weeks that is 48 gallons a month. That is about 1.6 gallons a day, so I can just program in a 1.6 gallon a day waterchange.
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Old 12-29-2005, 01:48 AM   #10
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If you do a 20% water change you have 20% of all "bad" water. If you do a small water change each day then you will be taking out some "good" water when you do you water change so your not really getting a full 20% water change in the same time period. You may change over the same amount of water but the effect isn't the same. Wow this is hard to try and explain. One more time.
If you do a 48 gallon water change your getting a full 48 gallons of bad water.
If you do a 1.6 gallon water change per day, you are mixing good and bad water together. That means when tomorrow comes that 1.6 gallons is really a mixture of both waters. Then so one throughout the whole month. When the month comes up yes you have changed out 48 gallons but you some of that has been the new water and some the old water.
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Old 12-29-2005, 02:06 AM   #11
itsadryheat1
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You are so right, it is hard to explain. But the problem with what you suggest is that in order to get the 20% of all "bad" water, I have to allow the water to get "bad" by waiting to change the water. It also puts stress on the fish from letting the water constantly change from good to bad to good to bad, etc. By a constant changeout the water stays very stable, and should not get "bad". In a natural reef the water is constanly changed by the waves and tides and flows and everything else natural, not a biweekly current. I am not trying to suggest this is even close to a natural reef, but it seems that a constant replenishment of fresh with a constant discarding of used must be better than a sudden change of 20 or 30 percent twice a month. Not to mention the only work involved is mixing a barrel of water once a month.
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Old 12-29-2005, 02:08 AM   #12
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If he's starting with good water, and changing 1.6gpd, how does he get bad water? The water would allways be good, and stable, right?
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Old 12-29-2005, 09:33 AM   #13
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Here's the deal: Doing daily water changes is undoubtedly "better", in that you have less chance of stressing the livestock with the new water. What is not so good about it, is that it will take a lot more new water to get the same dilution.

WHen doing a 20% water change, we must be careful to match the new water's temp and pH with the old water, so that the livestock isn't stressed. The thing to understand is that when we say "bad water" it isn't really bad. We never want BAD water in our tanks. What I mean by bad water is old water, which is still good, but does not have the full concentrations of trace elements, and has a bit more nutrients than what I'd like. But it's still perfectly safe.

It all depends on how much water you want to use. As the article says 4 50% water changes will dilute the "bad water" as much as 23 10% water changes. That's a big difference.

Of course, you can elect to use the same amount of water as if you were doing a massive water change, but you will not get the same dillution effect.

I'm not saying one is better than the other. I think the reason most peole do a 20% water change every 2 weeks is that it's a good middle ground.
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Old 03-28-2011, 06:07 PM   #14
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does not sound right......


Although I love the idea of the stability by not shocking the system
with less frequent larger water changes....I still think the less frequent
larger changes are the way to go.....

Hard to explain why.... I just feel that when you change
say 30 gallons at once on a 300 gallon system yoU KNOW that
there is 30 gallons of fresh trace element filled saltwater going into the
tank that is brand new and all trace elements are still in tact and have
not been skimmed out etcetc....... and you know that 30 gallons of
bad water was just removed prior to putting the 30 in of fresh saltwater

The above is a water change.

This few drops on a regular basis just does not sound like it will have
the PUNCH of more trace elements freshly put in etcetc......

Its like there will be the same amount of salt in the food but...
it all went to the bottom of the french fry box and you didn't taste it! ha!

ok...so I have food on the mind hahahahaha the analogy is sound ...ok!!!!!! hahaha

ANyways..>I could be wrong but that is my feelings on this.

10 percent water change ever 2 weeks is the way to go in my opinion.

My animals have never been shocked from that change providing

1) I make the water 24 hours in advance
2) The water is room temperature at least before putting in sump
3) I add the new water fairly slowly and mix in with the sump water prior
to pumping it back into the dt.
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Old 03-28-2011, 06:19 PM   #15
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Rising from the dead....



all I can say is I would not spend over $300 for an ATO system without a float...
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