Questions for folks who aren't doing water changes

Lasse

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Yes Lasse but you are a bad example :p
From what I gather most of your life's work has revolved around keeping water systems healthy. You probably have knowledge on a lot of areas that only a few people like you and Randy Farley share. It kind of reminds me when I bought in an expert Gardner to look at our property and he could just look at almost every plant and identify what we were doing wrong and what needed to be changed. Nothing beats working decades on various systems and seeing it all.
Yes i have a lot of experiences - that´s true but the most of it say "look at your animals and do not do the mistake to show your figures for them" :D Another life experiences is to just turn things the other way around. Oh it is a problem and a waste - Have to find some organism there exactly this will be their resources. Algae is normal no problem for me - I have a wide variety of CUC andI vary it with time. In the start - I hade urchins - do not need them for the moment -my snails and hermits fix it. I have also learned that what we say in Swedish "Mångfald är bättre än enfald" - direct translated will it be "Diversity is better than simplicity" - but in swedish "enfald" also stands for imbecility. We are good in sayings :p

It means that I try to have as many organisms as possibly in my tank and if I get a "pest" (which means something that I do not like - nothing else) - my first question - what will eat this organism. I also have learned not to use unknown chemicals and wonder remedies - if it really kills something - it will kill at least 10 organisms that have been a part of my stability. There is no goal seeking missiles in the hobby -most remedies are more like a small nuke

Sincerely Lasse
 
Lazys Coral House

robbyg

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Yes i have a lot of experiences - that´s true but the most of it say "look at your animals and do not do the mistake to show your figures for them" :D Another life experiences is to just turn things the other way around. Oh it is a problem and a waste - Have to find some organism there exactly this will be their resources. Algae is normal no problem for me - I have a wide variety of CUC andI vary it with time. In the start - I hade urchins - do not need them for the moment -my snails and hermits fix it. I have also learned that what we say in Swedish "Mångfald är bättre än enfald" - direct translated will it be "Diversity is better than simplicity" - but in swedish "enfald" also stands for imbecility. We are good in sayings :p

It means that I try to have as many organisms as possibly in my tank and if I get a "pest" (which means something that I do not like - nothing else) - my first question - what will eat this organism. I also have learned not to use unknown chemicals and wonder remedies - if it really kills something - it will kill at least 10 organisms that have been a part of my stability. There is no goal seeking missiles in the hobby -most remedies are more like a small nuke

Sincerely Lasse
I agree with your approach Lasse. I also do not put any magic potions in my Tank, I found out the hard way that they temporarily fix one problem while creating several new ones. It's kind of funny when you have been in this hobby as long as we have to see all the new chemicals they create each year. I think the chemical products really got entrenched in the market sometime around 2000 and it has just grown and grown. It seems like in each catagory of "Chemical Fix" the product always gets these threads that say how great it works and then it takes about 2-3 years before the consensus is that it has no real or lasting benefit and does mostly harm. Then the product goes away and is soon replaced with a new one and the cycle repeats.
 

Sallstrom

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I guess running an aquarium without reguar water changes you must accept, or don't believe in it, or somehow deal with the risk of "the unknown" building up in the water.
For me, I wanted to test it and I haven't seen any tank "crasch" so far(I'm responsible for the tropcial tanks here at the Aquarium, so that's 10+ tanks for 10+ years, about 5 years without regular water changes). So this is mostly a post to weigh up for the posts saying almost every tank with this type of husbandry will crasch :)

And to be clear, it's not a competition on how long you can run a tank without changing water. I hope we all want to create an environment as good as possible for our animals. If it's easier to reset the water quality with a water change, do a water change.
And it's not about being lazy and wanting to get away from doing manual labor (roll up the sleeves kind of work). I think you need to do a lot of testing and dosing to run a tank this way. Probably not easy for a beginner.

As for "magic bottles" I think this method is a way of getting away from the unknown addetives. I might be a bit too meticulous when it comes to certain addetives (we use 96% etanol as carbon source for example), but that is a way for me to get rid of some of the risks of getting something bad into the tank. So IMO this is a way to get more control. Using newly mixed saltwater would be more of a risk then keeping the tank water you've tested and are happy with. Do you test your newly mixed saltwater for all the things you test the tank water for? I don't. So for me the newly mixed saltwater is more unknown then the tank water.

Another thing about this method is that you can do it any way you like. In our case we test our water at Triton lab and have been since 2014. We try to get as close as we can to their setpoints, yes. But we don't run every tank by the Triton method or manual. Every tank is different and sometimes you can't have 10x turnover rate or a refugium etc. Like I mentioned before, we had a soft coral tank and kept it running well with just buffer and some Triton addetives. We couldn't use a calcium reactor because the Ca just kept increasing(we tried a CaRx), while the KH was stable. So we had to try something else. But with the same goal, keep good water quality.

Just some thoughts :) And I'm happy to share more of our experiences if anyone would like.
 
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Zirco

Zirco

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Here’s one reef tank which we ran without WC for 5 years.
83648B56-026A-47C6-84F9-9BE34BA80251.jpeg

I guess running an aquarium without reguar water changes you must accept, or don't believe in it, or somehow deal with the risk of "the unknown" building up in the water.
For me, I wanted to test it and I haven't seen any tank "crasch" so far(I'm responsible for the tropcial tanks here at the Aquarium, so that's 10+ tanks for 10+ years, about 5 years without regular water changes). So this is mostly a post to weigh up for the posts saying almost every tank with this type of husbandry will crasch :)

And to be clear, it's not a competition on how long you can run a tank without changing water. I hope we all want to create an environment as good as possible for our animals. If it's easier to reset the water quality with a water change, do a water change.
And it's not about being lazy and wanting to get away from doing manual labor (roll up the sleeves kind of work). I think you need to do a lot of testing and dosing to run a tank this way. Probably not easy for a beginner.

As for "magic bottles" I think this method is a way of getting away from the unknown addetives. I might be a bit too meticulous when it comes to certain addetives (we use 96% etanol as carbon source for example), but that is a way for me to get rid of some of the risks of getting something bad into the tank. So IMO this is a way to get more control. Using newly mixed saltwater would be more of a risk then keeping the tank water you've tested and are happy with. Do you test your newly mixed saltwater for all the things you test the tank water for? I don't. So for me the newly mixed saltwater is more unknown then the tank water.

Another thing about this method is that you can do it any way you like. In our case we test our water at Triton lab and have been since 2014. We try to get as close as we can to their setpoints, yes. But we don't run every tank by the Triton method or manual. Every tank is different and sometimes you can't have 10x turnover rate or a refugium etc. Like I mentioned before, we had a soft coral tank and kept it running well with just buffer and some Triton addetives. We couldn't use a calcium reactor because the Ca just kept increasing(we tried a CaRx), while the KH was stable. So we had to try something else. But with the same goal, keep good water quality.

Just some thoughts :) And I'm happy to share more of our experiences if anyone would like.

When I decided two years ago to stop doing water changes, I was pretty sure it would be possible to maintain a healthy tank. Your tanks prove that it is possible even though my particular attempt failed. Given all the confounding variables, I doubt I'll ever be able to figure out exactly why it didn't work in my tank but it's encouraging to see that it can be done!
 

tony'stank

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I have a RSR450 with no water changes for 21/2 years. The last water change was after chemiclean treatment for a cyano
outbreak. I have previously gone 4 years without a WC. I RO skimmer and a small refugium from which I remove caulerpa weekly. I use Chemipure Blue in a reactor and occasional Phosphate remove. My tank is heavily stocked with both fish and corals. I have a 6 inch Hippo Tang and 5 inch Yellow tang, an Ocellaris clown, or damsel, and two pygama cardinals, a Royal Gramma, a purple fire fish, a shrimp, and a coral shrimp. i do ICP testing every 3 to 6 months and adjust trace elements as necessary with ATI supplements. My tank is extremely stable.
 

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