Author Topic: nitrate issues help  (Read 2980 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline stbh1

  • Fish Out of Water
  • *
  • Posts: 16
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
nitrate issues help
« on: August 21, 2007, 10:06:38 PM »
I am having issues with keeping my nitrate levels down I have done two water changes in the past week consisting of 20% and even used a siphon to clean the sand substrate, I recently added a protein skimmer to help this issue.  I have tested my water which I use well water and it shows no traces of nitrate so I can eliminate the water source, any help would be great. I am using a tetra test kit and its showing 100mg/L (very red) thanks for any advice.

Offline skipm

  • Global Moderator
  • Mature Reef
  • *****
  • Posts: 2058
  • Gender: Male
  • December 2, 1998-April 29, 2008 I miss her.
    • View Profile
Re: nitrate issues help
« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2007, 11:09:14 PM »
a 20% water change won't make a significant change in the nitrate levels, you would need to make larger changes in order to see a drop.  In order to get the levels down you need to find the source and make changes there.  Tell us a bit more about the tank like its size, its inhabitants, how long its been set up, etc.  It could be as simple as the tank being overfed causing the high nitrates.  Another culprit could be the filtration system.  Give us some more info to go on and we'll see what we can come up with.
The only thing that happens fast in a reeftank is disaster......and an empty wallet!

Offline nemosreef

  • Mature Reef
  • *****
  • Posts: 1075
  • Gender: Male
  • Charleston Reefer
    • View Profile
Re: nitrate issues help
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2007, 11:11:02 PM »
You will need to do several large water changes over a period of time to bring a level that high down. You can also use Purigen which will help some to. The protein skimmer will help kkep the nirate level down but will not bring it down initially. So the water changes are a must.
For it is not 10,000 times I have tried and failed, but 10,000 ways I have found that have not worked.

38gal. Freshwater Planted Aquarium, 10gal. Freshwater Planted Aquarium.

Offline aquaticimports

  • Established Tank
  • ****
  • Posts: 346
  • Gender: Male
  • Charleston Reefer
    • View Profile
    • Aquatic Imports International
Re: nitrate issues help
« Reply #3 on: August 22, 2007, 11:17:27 AM »
Get a differant Test kit . The tetra test always do that .Try a fast test or bring me the water and I wil test it for you.

Offline stbh1

  • Fish Out of Water
  • *
  • Posts: 16
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
Re: nitrate issues help
« Reply #4 on: August 23, 2007, 07:49:16 PM »
I was advised that the bio balls would be contributing to my high levels of nitrate,  I was also told that since I had enough live rock that by eliminating the bio balls this would lower my nitrate anyone ever experienced this or have any ideas thanks. 

Offline skipm

  • Global Moderator
  • Mature Reef
  • *****
  • Posts: 2058
  • Gender: Male
  • December 2, 1998-April 29, 2008 I miss her.
    • View Profile
Re: nitrate issues help
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2007, 05:03:55 PM »
Removing the bioballs will not cause the nitrate to drop, you will have to do water changes to get it down but it will help keep the levels from going back up.  I kinda figured you might be running a wet-dry filter with the high nitrates, that is why I asked about what kind of filtration you have.
The only thing that happens fast in a reeftank is disaster......and an empty wallet!

Offline stbh1

  • Fish Out of Water
  • *
  • Posts: 16
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
Re: nitrate issues help
« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2007, 10:08:12 AM »
I have been thinking about this and i have removed the bio balls like I stated.  I was wondering what the rest of you guys thought about this.

 1. My nitrates are reading extreme levels in my 125 gallon some corals/fish/liverock.
 2. If I did a 25% water change of 125 gallons = 25% less nitrate (approximately) now with my readings that is still way over the recommended level.

 3.  would it be safe to do 4 water changes with a two week period or shorter to reduce the nitrate level without shocking the tank.  I guess my real question is how many water changes can i do in a short period of time with no ill effect to the system an it inhabitants.

Offline skipm

  • Global Moderator
  • Mature Reef
  • *****
  • Posts: 2058
  • Gender: Male
  • December 2, 1998-April 29, 2008 I miss her.
    • View Profile
Re: nitrate issues help
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2007, 01:49:44 PM »
As long as the pH, alkalinity, and temperatures are matched you can do multiple water changes or even large water changes without any problem.  I know of one reefer that does near 100% water changes every time he does a water change in his nano with no adverse effects.
The only thing that happens fast in a reeftank is disaster......and an empty wallet!

Offline stbh1

  • Fish Out of Water
  • *
  • Posts: 16
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
Re: nitrate issues help
« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2007, 12:54:51 PM »
Thanks for all the replies but have some good news.  I had my water tested by someone else and using a different test kit (NOT TETRA)  and it showed that it was approximately 20ppm which is much better than what tetra was showing.  Which is good news but not where I want it yet.  To answer some of your other questions I have 3=pajama cardinals,2=clowns,=1=blue chromis,1=hawkfish,1=pygmy angel,1=damsel,=psuedoschromis,=six line wrasse,1=green carpet anemone. I have tested my water source and I use well water which shows no signs of nitrates even using the tetra kit. I have about 90 lbs of liverock not all live yet since i just added a few new pieces but have a good bit of lr that is nice.

dan-o

  • Guest
Re: nitrate issues help
« Reply #9 on: August 31, 2007, 06:09:26 PM »
I probally went thru every possible "ammonia event" that you could imagine.  I did everything you can imagine to overcome ammonia problems.  I came to the conclusion that something I did wrong caused the condition and little helped other than allowing time to pass.  I would look for the causes, such as over crowding or over feeding, correct it and wait.  I did not do water changes unless fish death was immanent.  I believe that the bacteria will grow to over come the ammonia and if you remove some of the ammonia by water change, it takes away from the food available to the bacteria.  I have tried infusions of new bacteria and had great success in a short period of time. I will mention "Biospira" as a possible remedy only because "I" had some miraculous results that many will tell you is "bull".  I also tried the various resin products such as Puragen with fair results.  I guess it all boils down to reducing the causes and waiting for the bio system to restore it's self.  With marine aquariums, patients is the big issue.
« Last Edit: August 31, 2007, 07:06:34 PM by dan-o »