Maintaining a healthy habitat will ensure a long life for your Red Eared Slider Trachemys scripta elegans not to mention you won’t be spending hundreds of dollars at the vet. Once a month move the turtle to another container of appropriate size that’s filled with water. They won’t be there long so there’s no need to heat the water but it shouldn’t be cold either, about room temperature would be fine. I use a five gallon paint bucket for one turtle or one of the large tubs that we see at the beach with ice in them and rope handles for more than one.
Turn off the filter and unplug the heater, let the heater sit for about 10 minutes. During this time you can take the filter into your bathroom and use the bathtub to rinse and clean the filter and all the media inside. Once a month you will change out the carbon and once every three months you can change out the pre-filter which is a sponge like material. Now we go back and bring out our siphon.
Siphon, what siphon? Well, unless you plan on bucketing all that water out you will need a siphon to get the water in the tank into another receptacle. Any aquarium siphon will work but if you truly want the easiest one you will spend about $80 depending on where you buy it but it’s called oddly enough The Python. It attaches to your kitchen faucet andboth drains and fills the tank within minutes by way of a valve change. The price always kept me from getting one so I use the regular siphon and bucket routine. Next