Time consuming and expensive problems are able to be prevented by spending some thirty minutes on maintaining aquariums every week. The most important factor for maintenance is the stability of the tank. As long as the fish are healthy and all things are running well, one will not need to do any major changes. This is even if the pH or water hardness is out of range. When considering aquarium maintenance Dayton residents should note increase or decrease of major parameters. These need more immediate attentions.
A key part of maintenance is the change of water. It should be done after every fortnight. It is the norm to change just about 10 to 15 percent of the volume of water. The extracted water gets replaced as one gets to vacuums the gravel. Uneaten foods and other residues that may have settled on the substrate will be gotten rid of in the process.
The parameters of the water used for replacement and that in the tank should be carefully checked. Tap water is most likely to contain chlorine or chloramines which tend to air out very quickly. The use of a water conditioner neutralizes chlorine in either of the cases. Ammonia will however still be present in the water with chloramines. It is able to be broken down by nitrifying bacteria. These bacteria are always present in the aquarium.
Water supplied by the municipal council has various other elements, iron and phosphates being the most common. The composition of tap water needs to be confirmed from the local water company. Well water is normally harder than tap water but is free of chlorine. Water that is filtered needs to be checked as well since the filter membranes may be damaged or they could need replacement.
The chemistry of water is not visible hence the need to check it regularly. This can be made a routine by checking on tank chemistry as the water is changed. The most important parameters to be checked are nitrites, nitrates and salinity in the case of marine tanks. The pH is what determines stability and the optimum level is 6.5 to 7.5 for most fish species. This may however be adjusted depending on specific requirements.
The proper function of filters is very important. Filter inserts need changing every other month. The change of inserts may however be done after a shorter period in the case of higher fish loads. Trapped particles usually decompose in filters as much as they do in the aquarium. Cleaning filters once monthly is recommended. If the filters have bio-wheels, they should never be touched during cleaning. They get cleaned with water extracted during replacement.
Daily maintenance includes making sure equipment is running well and ensuring fish is watched during feeding. Any changes in behavior are a good indicator of potential problems. Fish should be counted on a weekly basis. The death of fish is likely to lead to increase in nitrate levels.
Expiration dates of various kits are very important. This needs to be checked to ensure there is no use of expired kits. These will tend to give false readings.
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Author: Karina FrostThis author has published 246 articles so far.