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Seems like a simple enough concept yet on my searches on the web, I find so many differences of opinion .... what do you do? I've heard 40% a week, 10% a week, "what water change?" etc...
 

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Really depends on your occupants really and your own personal pref.

For example, keeping species such as Discus' and Rays will require you to do larger frequent water changes. Some go up to 50%/wk.

The average theory is 25%/wk for a normal community tank.

Now...if you have messier fishies (eh hem....like goldies), you will need to do more.

Lightly stocked or heavily planted tanks, you can get by with 10%/wk. This is actually my current setup. I like to use the plants for natural filtration as well.

So...in a nutshell. No set rule in place. But certain guidelines should be made aware of.
 

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+19 to james it depends on your tank size and inhabitants
 

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its the same with any other "rule" of fish keeping. its application really depends on too many factors to be the same for everyone.

general rule of thumb is 25-30% weekly. this includes vacuuming, etc.

overstocked tanks, or tanks with messy fish like plecos, goldfish, oscars, etc. will produce a higher bioload, which would require more frequent or larger changes. while planted tanks can get away with less because of the additional "filtration" the plants do.

so it depends on the tank. but you cant go wrong sticking to 25-30% weekly.
 
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