Water Changes or AWCs... is one better than the other?

What do you think of auto water changes?

  • Best thing ever!

    Votes: 42 43.8%
  • It's good, but doesn't seem as effective as weekly/bi-weekly

    Votes: 8 8.3%
  • I'd like to do it, but haven't

    Votes: 34 35.4%
  • I prefer the old fashioned way

    Votes: 12 12.5%

  • Total voters
    96

Jax15

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A few months back I set up auto water changes on my Waterbox 130. It has worked amazingly well.. in theory. Back when I was doing bi-weekly 10-15% water changes, I would notice a happy shift in my tank after doing it. Corals and fish seemed to love the refresh, and things did well. With the AWC, I wonder if the 1% volume daily isn't as effective, and doesn't have that same "refreshing" effect.

What do you all think? Have you noticed any downside to AWC?
 
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Crustaceon

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It’s easier to notice a difference after a larger water change. To our eyes, the tank perks up, but I think it’s just because the tank suddenly becomes much cleaner from an overall dirtier level and refreshed with trace elements vs. with an AWC where the tank always stays at a slightly dirty level and has trace elements continually being added. I run an AWC and have seen better sps growth probably due to the stability and constant addition of trace elements. IMO it is better than a 10% weekly WC from that angle.
 

elwallacejr

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I wonder if the 1% volume daily isn't as effective, and doesn't have that same "refreshing" effect.
I do AWC on my 100g Planet and to start I'm doing 3.5% daily and thinking while 5% may be better. 1% IMO seems a bit low for AWC.
 

schuby

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I have AWC on my current tank (2nd overall). It takes me less than 3 minutes a week to swap out the new-water jug and empty the waste jug, every other day. I do about 1.5% a day. More time to enjoy my tank and very consistent.
 

Blknovass

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With doing AWC do you run a bare bottom tank or a sand bed? The idea of AWC always sounded good but when I do my 5% I always use a turkey baster to clean my rocks and sift through my substrate.
 
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LegendaryCG

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With doing AWC do you run a bare bottom tank or a sand bed? The idea of AWC always sounded good but when I do my 5% I always use a turkey baster to clean my rocks and sift through my substrate.
I think it absolutely works best bare bottom. You’re not getting the same detritus removal that you get with a manual change.
 

Kyl

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I do AWC on both my systems, 2g a day on my ~150g total, and 1g a day on my frag system, ~50g total.

I will never go back to a standard water change tank, AWC is probably the most liberating thing you can setup. No more putting a water change off till next week, then not doing it. No more flat out forgetting, no more having to heat your salt mix, no more risking dKH spikes on a water change if using mix-matched salt vs tank, etc.

Continuous water changes:

These changes are slightly less efficient than single batch water changes of the same total volume. A continuous water change of 30% exactly matches one batch 26% water change. As with very small batch water changes, these have the advantage of neither stressing the organisms (assuming the change is done reasonably slowly), nor altering the water level in the aquarium. The ease of doing such changes automatically also makes it far more likely that busy or lazy aquarists will actually do them.
The most important thing with either manual or automatic water changes is actually going through with doing it.
 

Angelwolf21203

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I am seriously considering buying this one.
Screenshot_20200522-092526~2.jpg

In fact I posted about it this am. How do you have your reservoirs set up? I need to figure out a way to do it vertically next to the tank, because under the stand and through the wall are not an option.
 

|Tom the Bomb|

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A few months back I set up auto water changes on my Waterbox 130. It has worked amazingly well.. in theory. Back when I was doing bi-weekly 10-15% water changes, I would notice a happy shift in my tank after doing it. Corals and fish seemed to love the refresh, and things did well. With the AWC, I wonder if the 1% volume daily isn't as effective, and doesn't have that same "refreshing" effect.

What do you all think? Have you noticed any downside to AWC?
Try the Triton method... NO WATER CHANGES AT ALL

Stuff needed:
  • A very large sump with a dedicated refugium chamber (also very large 10-20% of display) A more staright forward option is the Trigger Systems: Triton line of sumps dedicated for this method
  • Refugium with lots of chaeto and caulerpa. best if you buy Algae Barn's Ultimate refugium starter pack. WIth deep sand bed and live rock for nitrification and denitrification. Copepods. with grow light
  • A bunch of good media reactors for carbon and purigen and a chaeto reactor if u can
  • A very Powerful and Good skimmer that's recommended tank size is much over your tank size (oversized)
  • The sump needs a greater turnover rate. Overall, more filtration
  • A bunch of very nice Dosing pumps: recommended 2-4 neptune DOS with reservoir and apex and trident
  • A good test kit: salifert, apex probe and trident, hanna checkers
  • Buy a full set of Triton's Core7
  • and mail triton a sample of your water (ICP test)
The basics: very expensive and confusing but worth it
 

sjohnson2152

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I set up a doser maxi pump for AWC about 2 months ago, and I will agree, it is the best money I've ever invested in the tank. Takes a couple minutes to mix up new water each week and I don't get water all over the wood floors so they at least stand a chance of surviving another 100 years :). If I had done this a few years ago before we started what turned into 3 years of major renovations that sucked up all my free time, money, and energy I think my corals may have survived it. I think of my AWC system as a way to buffer the ebbs and flows of chaos in life that affect my ability to invest time in the tank.
 
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LegendaryCG

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How do you have your reservoirs set up?
For my setup I use 2 of the BRS 1 gallon space saver jugs and drilled a hole in the cap for the tubing. I just fill it every night and empty the other one. Takes like 2 minutes and unlike a bucket I can't really spill anything.
 
Last edited:

How often do you clean your filter socks?

  • Every few days

    Votes: 235 25.8%
  • Every weekend

    Votes: 144 15.8%
  • Every other week

    Votes: 73 8.0%
  • Every month

    Votes: 37 4.1%
  • When they look dirty

    Votes: 72 7.9%
  • I don't ever clean them

    Votes: 11 1.2%
  • I don't use filter socks

    Votes: 308 33.8%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 32 3.5%

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