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I'm putting together a python type system and have started to wonder how to temperature match my water changes. Do all you python users out there mix water from the hot tap with the cold?

I ask because I have heard to never cook with water from the hot tap, mostly because of dissolved metals. Could the hot water be a problem for my fish as well?

Any advice or experiences appreciated. :)

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Claire, I personally don't recommend it. I know a lot of people do this but I would be wary. The TDS (total dissolved solids...minerals, metals etc) levels in cold water are set at a standard 500mg by the US EPA. The warmer the water the more materials are dissolved into the water and therefore the higher the level of TDS.

The other thing to remember is sterility. Boilers are far from sterile. In fact if you inspect them they are often scary places for mould and rust. Hot tap water is never recommended for mixing baby food. That's a good enough reason for me not to use it in my tanks.

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Thanks, Imo. That confirms my feeling to stay away from the hot tap!

Last winter I was using water from the cold tap, heated in my kettle, to temperature match. I think I will stick with this method. I can still use the python thingie to empty the tank, and partially fill as well. I'll just take the fish out first, get it nice and temperature matched, then put them back in.

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Yes, well water isn't going to have the same level of contaminents as city. The thing that counts is through what kind of pipes your water is coming and what kind of heating system it's passing through. Water alkalinity also plays a role in toxicity at higher temps...low alkalinity water allows a higher concentration of metals to remain dissolved/soluble for far longer, if you have copper pipes and fish this is a big worry!

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I've always wondered this. I am considering getting a python too and just asked Kathy about this the other day I believe.

Just to be clear.. when you guys say that HOT tap water is not okay, is it okay to use warm tap water? If I am doing a water change and the water is say 75, it is okay to get the water to 75 coming out of the tap and use that correct?? Having buckets around the house is just not possible for all the water changes I've been doing..

Basically, at what temp would you say tap water is safe? At what temp would you say it's too hot to use?

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I'll give a shot at trying to explain this. It finally made sense to me when I lived in England, where most of the time, in a single sink the hot water tap and the cold water tap were completely separate.

It makes the most sense if you think of a typical bathroom sink. You have one knob for hot water, and one for cold. If you turn on just the cold water knob, the water that comes out is straight from the mains, that is the main city water supply out in the street. If you turn on just the hot water knob, the water is probably coming from a hot water tank in your house. The water in the hot tank may have dissolved contaminants in it, and as that hot water travels from the tank to your faucet, it is also dissolving things from the pipes.

So mixing a small amount of hot water will give you a small amount of possible contaminants, using all hot water will give you a larger amount. It is not so much the temperature of the water, as how much water you use from your hot water system.

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Okaaaaaaaay.. I think I've got you.. So if you are trying to get water to 75, or even 80 (For the tops), and getting the water out of a faucet where the hot and cold are together, although the temp is warmer, you are pretty much using MOSTLY cold water with a little bit of the hot to warm it. So that's okay then?

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You've got the idea right. :) I think this is what most people do, and it's why I started the thread, to see if anyone else ever had problems.

For myself, I'm going to go with what Trinket said, and avoid using any hot water at all. That means I will have to take the fish out when I do a water change. Then I'll add in cold water, and bring it up to the right temperature with some water I've heated on the stove (out of the cold tap, of course). In summer it is not so bad because my tap water is almost as hot as my tank, but in winter it will need more heating up.

So anyone else out there mix in hot water with problems or not?

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I'd like to let my water sit out, but in this crazy animal house it's nearly impossible to find places to let the water sit, where the animals can't get into it. And let alone in the same room. We have a split level house with an addition on top which makes it approx 4 levels.. Level 4 is the hottest area of the house, but we keep it majorly air conditioned. However there is NO room for a tank up there. Level 1 is Tanya's area, but she pays for that space, so I can't move goldfish in there. The only tank in there is the 5 gallon with a platy that SHE picked out.. That tank is set to 80. I can't let water sit out in there because of the cats. The second level has my 29 gallon tank. It maintains a pretty good temperature, but again, the cats. Not only do they try to drink from the buckets but they knock them over. The only place the cats do not have access to is the back bedroom where my 38 gallon is. However this room gets the warmest, and sometimes 5-10 degrees warmener than the rest of the house. Not to mention the room is PACKED..

For this reason when I change my tanks, I look at the temperature, adjust the tap to match, fill my buckets, add prime, and add to the tank. I never even THOUGHT about my method being a problem honestly.. I really hope it isn't!!!! I want to try a python and I assume with that it would be the same? Kathy said there is a valve you can open to allow you to match the temperature. I am very curious to try one out..

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