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I have a 150g tank and I'm curious how you all maintain the PH levels during vacuum/water changes? I have 7.2ph water out of my tap but I do have a buffering substrate so the PH is high, but I am trying to avoid drops during water changes. I typically use a python system to do the changes, but am not sure I'm doing this correctly. Any thoughts?
 

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premix the water in a clean (used only for water changes) trash barrel and get the pH to the right level and dechlorinate it in the barrel, get a cheap return pump and pump it to the tank from there. It'll cost you a bit up front and you'll have to store the trash barrel somewhere when not in use but it'll make your water changes safer and more consistent for your fish.
 

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I did what liscoots has suggested for years and I've also just added buffer (baking soda) to the tank as I'm refilling it. Most of the fish I've kept have not seemed to notice any difference. I have some wild caught tanganyikans in the tank right now and they tend to be a bit more sensitive. I still just add buffer to the tank as I'm filling but keep the water changes smaller.

It becomes less practical to use a barrel to mix the water when you have a bigger tank.
 

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I don't know if it's less practical, I used a 55 gallon drum to premix mine, and pumped it to 30+ tanks under 40 gallons, to a 180, 2x125's, and 2x75's, 55 gallons at a time, the mixing and pumping time allowed my hot water heater to heat back up between fills of the drum.
 

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lilscoots said:
I don't know if it's less practical, I used a 55 gallon drum to premix mine, and pumped it to 30+ tanks under 40 gallons, to a 180, 2x125's, and 2x75's, 55 gallons at a time, the mixing and pumping time allowed my hot water heater to heat back up between fills of the drum.
Maybe I should have said less practical...if you're a lazy fishkeeper :)

I have a 240 now and I haven't used the 55 gallon drum since I set up this tank. When I had a 120 (which is now the sump for the 240) I used it all the time. The drum is still set up with the pump and is ready to go. Maybe I'll give it a try on my next water change.
 

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I used to pre-mix my water for 24hrs in two 55-gal drums when I kept Discus but for Africans I just mix baking soda, epsom salt, and Malawi Lake Salt in a 5-gal bucket right before doing my 50%-60% weekly changes in my 450gal and 180gal. I add the pre-mixed water in gradually as the tank is refilling.
 
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