Carrying water, overflowing buckets and this for 30 tanks twice a week? No thank you! Fishkeeping should be fun and not slave work that’s why a automatic water change system was a must for my fishroom.
In my garage I have a 1000 ltr tank that I covered with black plastic. Only a little strip exposes the tank and shows the scale how high the water is in the tank. Reason being that I don’t want algae growing in the storage tank so I keep it as dark as possible.
This tank gets filled up every Saturday 6pm with 550ltr rain water and 250ltr water out of the mains water line. The rain water gets collected from the garage roof and is stored inside a 5000 ltr tank beside the fish room. This tank also helps watering our veggie garden in summer when there are water restrictions in place. After the tank is full I add 480gr salt and 24gr of magnesium sulphate. My guppies do really well with this salt concentration. The magnesium sulphate is mainly for the plants + every tank gets liquid iron once a week.
Inside the tank is a self-made air driven filter with activated charcoal. Also inside the tank is a big net bag with 10kg of coarse grit to buffer the pH. Since there is no automatic water change on Sunday, the water has 36h to dissolve the added salt, flow through the charcoal filter and the grit numerous times. Comes Monday 9am the automatic water change circle starts again and by then the water is primed.
A small submersible pump inside the tank is connected to a pressure reducer, a filter and a backflow valve. From here the new, fresh water flows through a pipe under the ground to the fishroom. This pipe is connected to a 40mm PVC pipe under the ceiling. This pipe is fitted with 30 4mm hose tails that are fitted with black irrigation hoses. Every hose ends in a special dripper that delivers 8ltr per hour - independed what the pressure is. That way I can control the amount of new water per tank and day by simply having a timer that starts and switches off the pump after x minutes. Everything is timed that way that at the end of the week the pump has drained the tank down to about 200ltrs. Means every one of my 40ltr tank gets 26.6ltr of new water per week through the automatic system. Combined with sucking out poo twice a week, all the tanks get at least 100% water change per week.
When new water enters the tanks, the water level rises and once it reaches the top of the drainpipe inside every tank it flows down into the drainage system and outside into the soak hole. This happens twice a day every 12h because I believe that smaller water changes more often are better than one big water change for the fish.