Let me state for the record that I’m all about saving a little money. I also love DIY stuff as long as it relates to some activity I enjoy and I’m confident I can’t purchase that DIY for less.
I have posted a few times about how I do water changes. All of my cichlid tanks, except my quarantine and hospital tanks, contain sand substrates. As a result, I use a system I created using Python water changers that easily minimizes loss of source water, cichlid fry, and sand. My process utilizes two Python brand water changing hoses and a few other components.