Do you do water changes?

BRS

Do you do water changes or dose?


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Ocean’s Piece

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I recently stopped doing water changes. Let’s be honest, water changes are a big hassle, especially if you’re doing it weekly. As a reefer, I’m always looking for new, better, and more efficient ways to achieve my goals. I found that dosing is the best method for me to go about nutrient import and export. In this video, I’ll cover what I use for nutrient import and export, how I test and dose, some new challenges I have to faced because of this switch, some shocking news for those that have been following my videos, and how I keep my tank stable.

Share which method you use through the poll and in the thread. There’s not one way to achieve nutrient import and export, and I want to hear what you do to import and export nutrients. There’s pros and cons to water changes and dosing, and love to hear what method you’re currently using.

A view on my video means a lot to me. One view shows me that one person gave me time to relax and enjoy my content and hard work. I would really appreciate if you simply viewed this video, but if you want to show your support even further, I’d appreciate if you liked, subscribed, and left a comment.

Check out the other videos on my channel:
 

watdachuck

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Other, I do water "exchanges".

I open the drain of my skimmer and flood my sump inducing aggressive wet skimmate. This coincides with me siphoning the tank into a filter sock at the entry end of my sump. Most of what is too small for the sock (I believe) gets removed by the skimmer. The corals also get a great meal during that time.
 

rtparty

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I follow the Reef Moonshiners method. No water changes unless my corals or ICP test shows a need. My last water change was in May.

IMG_20220109_010312_573.jpg
 
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Ocean’s Piece

Ocean’s Piece

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Other, I do water "exchanges".

I open the drain of my skimmer and flood my sump inducing aggressive wet skimmate. This coincides with me siphoning the tank into a filter sock at the entry end of my sump. Most of what is too small for the sock (I believe) gets removed by the skimmer. The corals also get a great meal during that time.
That’s a very interesting way to go about this. Never heard of it before. On occasion, especially if my nitrates are low, I’ll dump the some of the collection cup in my tank
 

90's reefer

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I started my 120 2.5 years ago with the goal of no WC's. I went 18 months and then started doing one 12g every 2 months with no obvious benefit. About 24 months I noticed that the tank just looked off. No parameters out of range but visually just off.
I did another 12g and even my wife noticed that it looked better with more enhanced colors.
So I now do 12g's a month to remove anything that might buildup that cant be tested for.
I just got my first ICP test back and everthing was inline.
I dose trace elements so the test showed my dosing amount is correct.
20211231_145351.jpg
 

jsker

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Auto water Change and some doing to keep my parameter at desired levels.
 
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Ocean’s Piece

Ocean’s Piece

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I follow the Reef Moonshiners method. No water changes unless my corals or ICP test shows a need. My last water change was in May.

IMG_20220109_010312_573.jpg
I follow the Reef Moonshiners method. No water changes unless my corals or ICP test shows a need. My last water change was in May.

IMG_20220109_010312_573.jpg
I have never seen this method, but I’m about to look it up. I follow the same philosophy. Nothing has suffered from starting to dose a few months ago. I plan to never do a water change unless absolutely needed. Plus, I have changed my parameters pretty far away from instant ocean that it would probably create more problems doing a water change.
 
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Ocean’s Piece

Ocean’s Piece

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I started my 120 2.5 years ago with the goal of no WC's. I went 18 months and then started doing one 12g every 2 months with no obvious benefit. About 24 months I noticed that the tank just looked off. No parameters out of range but visually just off.
I did another 12g and even my wife noticed that it looked better with more enhanced colors.
So I now do 12g's a month to remove anything that might builup that cant be tested for.
I just got my first ICP test back and everthing was inline.
I dose trace elements so the test showed my dosing amount is correct.
20211231_145351.jpg
Something that amazes me is how you can tell if your tank is happy or not based off the corals. It may look like things are good through testing, but if I notice my corals are unhappy, I trust them more than my test kits quite honestly. Beautiful tank btw.
 

jda

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I am too lazy and cheap not to change water. For me, a water change is just a $9-10 bag of IO for 44g of water, turning of a few valves over a few days. I do use calcium reactors for day-to-day supplementation.

DSR, or the more recent methods, are too much work and too expensive for me. Nobody has to change water, but you need to be doing what the water change would of done - nobody can just be lazy for a long period of time and expect things to stay stable. The DSR (or equivalent) folks test more, spend more and otherwise work harder than I want to. I just test alk like once a week.

...a few months in infantile in terms of a tank - even people who change water have life happen and go 2-4 months or more sometimes without water changes when they got busy or sick. Years is what is needed to see. Your tank will not be the same in a few years unless you work hard like the long term limited water change people do. Every time that I go a few months without water changes, the corals just seem to perk up a bit when I am done - it is certainly noticeable. I don't keep many softies, but I do have some higher value Z&P and mushrooms and their growth takes back off after I get back to my routine.
 
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90's reefer

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Thanks. Its
Something that amazes me is how you can tell if your tank is happy or not based off the corals. It may look like things are good through testing, but if I notice my corals are unhappy, I trust them more than my test kits quite honestly. Beautiful tank btw.
Thanks! Its always nice to hear that.
I started by researching Glenn Fongs DSR system.
I only use the DSR trace and I also use a Carx instead of 2 part.
For my system I believe removing the 12g's a month removes any buildup of untested substances.
I use IO and just have to lower alk to 8 as the other 2 big 3 are right where I run my system.
I also run an oversize skimmer that removes 300ml of skim a day.
So that also equals 1/2 gallons a week of new salt water. I replace 300ml a day.
 
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Ocean’s Piece

Ocean’s Piece

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The picture below is the reason I do water changes. Even with mechanical filtration on my bare bottom system this is what I pull from my sump every 2-3 weeks
FAF55BA6-C3C1-4529-B40D-0DAB2EEA76BB.jpeg
That is some pretty disgusting water. I currently run chemi-pure blue, which contains carbon to remove this tint from the water.
 

jda

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BTW - I have talked for years with Glenn and some of the other "no water change" people about having a different up-front message. All of them change water if they need to for their tank to succeed, so they are really "limited water change" or "no scheduled water change" people. The distinction is important since too often people skip the details and only read the title and get rigid about never, ever, changing any water to the detriment of their corals, inverts and fish. Nearly all of the limited water change folks indeed change water will if they need to treat with a med, something just gets too far out of whack, etc.

It is not too dissimilar from the no oil change people. Yes, these people exist. They just add when they get low and change a filter. However, if they have a head gasket problem and get coolant in the oil, or the like, they do an oil change.
 

90's reefer

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The picture below is the reason I do water changes. Even with mechanical filtration on my bare bottom system this is what I pull from my sump every 2-3 weeks
FAF55BA6-C3C1-4529-B40D-0DAB2EEA76BB.jpeg
Every couple months I clean my return pump. While im cleaning it I put a pump with a hose attached in the sump. The hose goes into the filter sock. By the time im done cleaning the pump the sump is clean. Super simple with no water removal needed.
 
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Randy Holmes-Farley

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I recently stopped doing water changes. Let’s be honest, water changes are a big hassle, especially if you’re doing it weekly.

Water changes are not a hassle at all if you automate it. I spent less than 15 minutes a month to change 1% daily (as 24 x 15 minute periods each day). :)
 

jda

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In sticking with the theme of: you don't have to change water, but you need to do what water changes would have done.... I don't recommend limited water change systems without a skimmer. You introduce heavy metals into your tank every day with feeding (and some supplements) and those have to exit. GAC and can get some of them, but most don't change it often enough to truly be effective for long periods of time. Some of the media made for metals can get some. Some can bind to aragonite. Most can bind to organics and get skimmed out. ...so if you are not doing regular water changes, at least run a skimmer so that some of the metals do not build up.
 

90's reefer

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BTW - I have talked for years with Glenn and some of the other "no water change" people about having a different up-front message. All of them change water if they need to for their tank to succeed, so they are really "limited water change" or "no scheduled water change" people. The distinction is important since too often people skip the details and only read the title and get rigid about never, ever, changing any water to the detriment of their corals, inverts and fish. Nearly all of the limited water change folks indeed change water will if they need to treat with a med, something just gets too far out of whack, etc.

It is not too dissimilar from the no oil change people. Yes, these people exist. They just add when they get low and change a filter. However, if they have a head gasket problem and get coolant in the oil, or the like, they do an oil change.
Exactly. I replace 300ml of skim water a day equal to 1/2g a week.
I also notice an uptick in coral health right after a WC.

I agree on the upfront staement as Glenn has mentioned if he needs one he does one.

His system is a no scheduled, like weekly WC, imo.

Also unrelated as he swore T5's are the only light for reef systems.
He is now building his own leds, lol.
 

90's reefer

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Water changes are not a hassle at all if you automate it. I spent less than 15 minutes a month to change 1% daily (as 24 x 15 minute periods each day). :)
My next large upgrade will incorporate some amount of AWC.
 
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Ocean’s Piece

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BTW - I have talked for years with Glenn and some of the other "no water change" people about having a different up-front message. All of them change water if they need to for their tank to succeed, so they are really "limited water change" or "no scheduled water change" people. The distinction is important since too often people skip the details and only read the title and get rigid about never, ever, changing any water to the detriment of their corals, inverts and fish. Nearly all of the limited water change folks indeed change water will if they need to treat with a med, something just gets too far out of whack, etc.

It is not too dissimilar from the no oil change people. Yes, these people exist. They just add when they get low and change a filter. However, if they have a head gasket problem and get coolant in the oil, or the like, they do an oil change.
I’m not opposed to water changes, and I’ll do them if an icp result/my corals are showing that they need one. I am early into dosing, so my system will be perfect as I do it more frequently.
Water changes are not a hassle at all if you automate it. I spent less than 15 minutes a month to change 1% daily (as 24 x 15 minute periods each day). :)
Personally, the auto water change system was a little pricey for me, so I was doing it manually. Probably should have said that doing manual water changes weekly is a hassle.
 
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