What's the lowest budget option for an AWC?

RCS82

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Was on the verge of investing in a Tunze 3155 but I might have to strongly consider the Auto Aqua instead.
I was in the same boat on my new build a few months ago. With my old tank I used my ghl doser to handle the ATO but with the new tank I wanted that dosing head for something else. So I thought about buying the old reliable Tunze 3155 but when I figured for that price I could try the Auto Aqua unit which will take care of my ATO plus give me auto water changes. It was a no brainer and so far I'm really pleased
 

AquamanE

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Ive been doing this with same Stenner pump for many years. See my thread below. Might not be cheapesdt but its not far from it and its an industrial chemical pump. With APEX I just tell it how many minutes to pump for. I have it figured out to do 1% per day divided into 2 runs. One at 6am and one at 7pm. I’m home at those times so i can monitor if i have to.

Stenner pumps have one motor controlling 2 heads. Never had an issue with unacceptable differences in equal dosing.

That thread is 7 years old.

 
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dportero

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What about just using a Jaebo doser to with one head pumping out tank water, and then one head pumping in new saltwater. The Jaebo dosers are like $80
 

TX_Punisher

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I think the best method would be to have a system that removes X amount and adds back the same X amount. The sensor version I’m running isn’t the best IMHO.
Sounds like the apex and dos to me. Not the cheapest if you don’t have an apex already, though.
 

Scwahl44

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To be honest auto water changes only take about a gallon a day out and replace it , you could just when your feedin your tank take a gallon out and replace it with a fresh gallon of saltwater , that’s assuming you feed your fish everyday , it would save you a lot of money
 

Dj City

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To be honest auto water changes only take about a gallon a day out and replace it , you could just when your feedin your tank take a gallon out and replace it with a fresh gallon of saltwater , that’s assuming you feed your fish everyday , it would save you a lot of money
AWC is however much an individual would like it to be.
I had mine change 2.5 gallons every day in a 15g column nano reef tank.
To do a gallon a day manually is more work than expected.
Making a gallon of saltwater everyday would be tedious to say the least.
 

rcpalmer1

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What about just using a Jaebo doser to with one head pumping out tank water, and then one head pumping in new saltwater. The Jaebo dosers are like $80
I had an old Jebao 4 head pump I wasn't using. I paid $65 originally. I have it set so on the hour it pumps in 300ml in, 5 minutes past the hour it pumps out 300ml, 10 minutes past the hour it pumps in 300ml in, and 15minutes past the hour it pumps out 300ml. That is 3.8 gallons a day. After 6 months I noticed my salinity going up. It turned out one of the heads was slipping. I replaced all the heads with Kamora heads and have not had any problems since.
 

ikiwi

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Great question, I’ve been wondering the same. Seems DOS and AutoAqua are the most popular. Can I add a question.... for those who do AWC, do you keep your Fresh salt water reservoir heated and circulating?
 

BOWHUNTER4250

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If you want to do automatic water changes on a budget and have an apex then read on ......... I have a 75 gallon tank that i use for fresh clean salt water, heated and stirred , i have a Maxijet 1200 in that tank to pump my " clean " water into my sump , i have a Maxijet 1200 in my sump to pump " dirty " water out of my sump and into a drain .... every Sunday morning at 9:00 ( thru my Apex ) my A.T.O shuts off anf the " dirty " pump kicks on and pumps out 30 gallons then after A 1 minute delay my " clean " water pump kicks on and refills my sump back to working level , a few minutes after all is done my A.T.O kicks back on and i just did a 30 gallon water change and i didnt have to be home .

I make sure that 75 gallon tank stays filled and heated to the same temp. and salinity as my display , been working like this for going on 7 years with no issues !! total cost was less that 50.00 for the 2 Maxi - Jets .

everyone told me this way would never work and it would always be " OFF " NOPE !! K.I.S.S. method ;)
 

sharpimage

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Great question, I’ve been wondering the same. Seems DOS and AutoAqua are the most popular. Can I add a question.... for those who do AWC, do you keep your Fresh salt water reservoir heated and circulating?
I don't. 1 gallon a day on a 100 gallon tank.
 

jwt1603

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Great question, I’ve been wondering the same. Seems DOS and AutoAqua are the most popular. Can I add a question.... for those who do AWC, do you keep your Fresh salt water reservoir heated and circulating?
I don't heat but I have power heads and airstones in both the fresh and salt reservoirs. The fresh top off only lets in a small amount each time it goes off and it gets mixed in the sump before it goes back to the display so no temp impact. The Auto Aqua lets you adjust how fast (five settings) you want the salt water to refill so if you slowly refill the temp doesn't get affected.

I've been using it since it came out about two years ago and really like it. I change 2.5 gallons a day in my system. Then once a month or so, I use the manual option on the unit and change out about 15-20 gallons. Again, refilling it slowly so the temp isn't affected. Takes me a while on the big changes because I set the refill to the slowest point. But the system is doing it, not like I have to stand around and watch it.

Might be overkill to do both the daily changes and the monthly big change but I'm a bit obsessive about keeping the system clean. Then again I change out the three filter socks everyday too so maybe I'm too obsessed.....
 
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RCS82

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I don't heat but I have power heads and airstones in both the fresh and salt reservoirs. The fresh top off only lets in a small amount each time it goes off and it gets mixed in the sump before it goes back to the display so no temp impact. The Auto Aqua lets you adjust how fast (five settings) you want the salt water to refill so if you slowly refill the temp doesn't get affected.

I've been using it since it came out about two years ago and really like it. I change 2.5 gallons a day in my system. Then once a month or so, I use the manual option on the unit and change out about 15-20 gallons. Again, refilling it slowly so the temp isn't affected. Takes me a while on the big changes because I set the refill to the slowest point. But the system is doing it, not like I have to stand around and watch it.

Might be overkill to do both the daily changes and the monthly big change but I'm a bit obsessive about keeping the system clean. Then again I change out the three filter socks everyday too so maybe I'm too obsessed.....
Great to hear feedback from a long time user. Don't mean to derail but how often do you clean the sensors and have you had any mishaps with them at all? I've used the unit for a month or 2 now and really like it.
Thanks
 

lavoisier

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The cheapest (and easiest) way I have found to do AWC is to run my skimmate very wet, use a float valve in sump attached to FSW container--size dependent on volume of system. I have a 1000g system and use 2 100g tubs, so 20% of system. I then dose FW to keep salinity stable. I change about 20% a month (but it is easy to vary the amount by adjusting the skimmer) and it is a daily change.
 

Gareth elliott

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Also use the auto aqua, i have a profilux but, adding a maxi doser and and level sensors cost 3 times what this does lol. I use the same 15 gallon barrel as above. The old water goes either into a qt tank or my drive way depending on how i turn the valve. Used my 3d printer to make a ledge under my window where the tube fits. So dont have to have my window open or drill holes in a wall.
 
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Daniel@R2R

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I'm currently running an ATK as my ATO (which I've really liked). I wonder if I go this route, should I uninstall that one or leave it on and just not set up the ATO portion of the Auto Aqua unit...
 
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Daniel@R2R

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