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About Me

  1. I am not new to the hobby. I keep 10-12 tanks plus 2 quarantine tanks. All but one have been running with few changes for over a year. They are all average to heavily planted. Some are heated, others are simply at room temperature. 1 or 2 could be considered over stocked a bit, but none are heavily stocked. All tanks have 1 or more air stones. None have any filtration except plants. I have ran a HOB on 2 of the tanks when I felt the mulm was excessive (about 2-3 weeks on each tank one time). Most of my experience with planted tanks was in the soft water similar to what Cory has. All of these tanks are using very hard water. Until recently everything was doing so well that other than checking to see how my new water tested, I didn't bother testing. Using Tetra easy strips, I tested my water by filing a 5 gallon bucket, adding Prime then waiting 2 days. Results: Nitrite 0, Nitrate 0, GH 150-300, Chlorine 0, KH 120-300, pH 7.2 - 7.8. Tested 3 buckets on different dates, that's why there is a range. I then used the last couple strips from that bottle and my tank results were about the same - except the Nitrates ranged from 40 ppm up to 200 ppm. That scared me, so I ordered a new bottle of test strips. Received them today. Results are the same. Some tanks are higher, some are lower, but they all test 80 ppm or higher for Nitrates. My fish appear healthy, the guppies, platies, mollies, plecos and white clouds are all breeding, the fry are growing normally. Only one tank has significant algae problem (hair algae). I stopped the Easy Green once I saw the high nitrates, prior to that I was dosing weekly but not super consistently. My questions: Should I be worried since the only problem appears on the test strip and tanks don't seem to be struggling? Should I continue dosing Easy Green, I think plant growth has slowed a bit since I stopped dosing?
  2. So, on a positive note, I did not lose a single fish from either my 20g or 72g. However right now I'm dealing with some massive nitrate levels. Let me give some details. My house went nearly 1 week without consistent power. Between 7 days I only received around half an hour of electricity on two different occasions. So I essentially put my backup heater in my big tank wrapped both tanks with insulating blankets, gave a salute and hoped for the best. So needless to say it worked, the temps didn't drop below 68F which is 10F below where it is kept. The house was at 48F at the lowest point. The 72g has a Fluval fx4 with Biohome media and two types of sponge, coarse/fine. I've never had an imbalance like this before. After spending all of last week cleaning the Fx4 and doing 25% water changes a day and 50% on Friday yet I saw zero change in nitrate levels. So I went to my lfs for some advice and they told me to get some Biochem-Zorb and place it in my Fx4. So I placed the BC-Zorb in my bottom tray after all the biohome yesterday afternoon. I expect to run it for atleast a week before I either add another pouch or try something else besides weekly 25% water changes. So essentially Im asking for some advice here to see if anyone else has had this problem. I suppose what I'm going through is 'old tank syndrome'. Was one pouch of BC-Zorb enough? I'm beginning to think I may have needed to buy two pouches. The tank is planted so I never get any ammonia readings. Nitrites are 0, and all the other parameters are normal just the Nitrates are through the roof. One other thing to mention is when I opened up my Fx4 on Wednesday to service it. My fine sponge is normally blue yet now its red. I think this means my Biohome is deteriorating? Could this be a cause of my nitrate spikes? This tank was in a such good cycle I could go 3 weeks with no water change before I would see nitrates go above 40ppm. Bonus pic of Ricky (royal) and Leo (Para) pleco's monchin, and a picture of the full tank taken this morning.
  3. I have a 55 gallon tank with a wet dry filter. For plants, there are Anubius, Dwarf Sagitaria, Java Fern & Ludwigia, 6 small sterbai coy cats, 2 hill stream loaches, 6 snails, 8 cardinal tetras, 10 rummy nose tetra, and more tetras in a hospital tank that will be moved over and plans to add dwarf gourami. I have been feeding root tabs 1 per dwarf sagitaria monthly and easy green once per week, and have 0 amonia, 0 nitrite and 0 nitrate. Is my wet dry so efficient that I never get an increase in nitrates? Are the nitrates going up and then back down so fast I never read >0? should I feed more often or more per feeding? Just get a lot more fish? Any suggestions would be appreciated.
  4. As a small low flow kinda sump like way to remove nitrates with the denitrate from Seachem or a different product my question is has anyone done something similar with a breeder box and helped keep the nitrates from getting too high between water changes ?
  5. As I have done more research on the chemistry of water, I just now have come to understand that what makes Chloramines so much more difficult to deal with than Chlorine by itself is that Chloramines is chlorine bonded with ammonia. So when you treat water with Chloramines, you are essentially just breaking the bond of the Chlorine/Ammonia and then the chlorine can be handled by the chemicals (prime) and it leaves the ammonia to be handled by your biological filtration in your tank. Is this correct? When I change water in my tanks I notice that is very hard to get the nitrates in the water to lower. Based on my understanding of the above, that is due to the chloramine my city water is treated with. Essentially, this means even though I am putting in new water, because the new water contains ammonia (after I treat with Prime), the new water gets cycled by my biological filter when added and spits back out immediately as Nitrate. Am I tracking this correctly? Ok so my real question - How do I get water to my tank without any effect of the Chloramine? Is the only way to get an RODI system that filters out everything into pure water? Does running my water through a chloramine pre-filter do anything or does it have to be a full RODI system to fully remove both parts of the chemical compound? Really appreciate any help the nerm crew can provide!
  6. Since set up, my nitrates for my 55 stayed around 5-10ppm (about 6 months now) but recently they went from 5ppm to 40ppm in a matter of a 2 weeks. I have a load of fast growing stem plants (ludwigia repens, anacharis) and floating plants (salvinia and water lettuce) to help with nitrates. I dont think the ludwigia has been growing as quick and they have algae growing on them now after the last small trimming. (All trimming were replanted in the same tank about 1.5 weeks ago) 0 ammonia 0 nitrites ph 7.8, fluval fx4 filter, airstone, prefilter sponge 20-22 juvenile corydoras, 16 juvenile rummynose tetras, 6 chili rasboras, 8 Amano shrimp, 8 ottoceiclus.
  7. Hello everyone. I have a heavily planted tank in a 24 gallon. I’m running a neo co2 (it’s 24/7 because there is no way to turn it off). I’m adding 10ml of flourish and 10ml of flourish advance in my tank daily and still register 0 nitrates. I measured another tank I have to confirm my API test kit is working and Indeed I’m registering nitrates in that one. I have 4 honey gouramis, 4 amano shrimp, 11ish cherry shrimp, 4 juli Corydoras, 2 guppy’s and 1 albino bristlenose pleco, 1 sword tail. My ph is 7.2 on average, ammonia 0, nitrite 0, nitrate 0. If I’m lacking any info let me know.
  8. I have a 110 gallon for my Lents and I love to have live plants for them to swim though. For the last 4 months I cannot get my plants to grow and they are dying. At first I was very confused because I recently moved and my previous water composition was extremely easy to keep plants alive but in my new house the water has absolutely nothing in the water. The house has a whole house rhino filters which I love for keeping fish but it is terrible for aquatic plant. I have dumped so much aquarium coop fertilizer and seachem nitrogen in the water but still cannot get the api nitrate measure to show any trace of nitrates. I have aquarium soil, running CO2, have medium light and fx6 filter. Can anybody give me suggestions on how to raise the nitrates?
  9. What would cause a planted tank to have high nitrates ?
  10. So I have a 29 gallon tank and I don’t seem to have enough light for plants to thrive and struggle to keep nitrates down. I have 1 clown pleco and 6 corys. Do struggling plants cause an increase in nitrates? Would fake plants be better?
  11. Hi Everyone, Wanted to start by saying that I went through the forum to see if I can find anything related to my issue, but couldn’t exactly. Here is my issue: Plants: I have what one would consider moderately planted, if not heavy, 30G. I have swords, water sprite, xmas moss, epiphytes of various kinds, Crinum, Rotala- Green and Red, hornwort. I have also some new plants which are undergoing snail quarantine and will be added this week. That’s a mix of water cabbage, crypt and 2 green plants I forgot ID of. My HOB has destroyed most my water lettuce and only duckweed remains. The airline dam I use barely holds. HOB will go away in few months. Parameters: I am battling High Nitrates despite all this for months. Ph stays around 7, Ammonia and Nitrite always 0. Ammonia may touch the 0.25 sometimes. I do weekly water change. Nitrates stay close to 40-80ppm Fertilizer: I made a mistake of adding 3 root tabs in one go and that drove my Nitrates through the roof. This has been a problem since. Its been more than a month and nothing has helped except water change and that is also temporarily. I also added Easy green liquid for moss once last week but no use. I also add CO2 booster 3 times a week and only 1ml. This is less than recommended. Algae: I was struggling with black beard, hair algae and green dust. Most of which are under control since I did a blackout, taped half of my LEDs. Questions: 1. Clearly my plants are struggling. What am I doing wrong? 2. What can automatically contain my Nitrate apart from water change? 3. Why are they not absorbing Nitrates like they should? 4. Do I need more floaters? Thank you
  12. So... my parents' house has well water and a water softener system installed so it has a GH of 0. Unfortunately, there is still around 40-50ppm of nitrate in the tap water itself. I am looking for something on the market that can specifically remove nitrate from the tap water when I do water changes. I found something like this: https://www.filterwater.com/ps-350-7-inline-nitrate-removal-cartridge.aspx Does anyone have any experience with products like these? Anyone else have nitrates in their well water? What did you do about it?
  13. I have been fighting to get my Nitrates to an acceptable level in my tank, and just can't seem to make any real improvements. I can't get the Nitrates to be lower than maybe 40 to 60. Today I checked my tap water. It is at around 40 Nitrates. So... I'm fighting a losing battle. Should I invest in an RO system? Will that help?
  14. Hi guys, I have 4 tanks, all planted and all different sizes. I have been running all between 6-3 months. I did a 30% water change on the big tanks (40&29)and topped off the smaller tanks (20L with 3 guppies & 10 shrimpand 3 gallon with 7-10 shrimp). I did the water change on Wednesday and tested the water today (Friday) and I have ammonia at 0 but nitrates at around 60- 80 on all tanks. I did dose with ez green on all tanks. Is this normal or what can I do to bring down my nitrate? thank in advance Ricky
  15. I have a 50 gallon freshwater aquarium that has been established for 15 years and recently decided to move from the plastic plants to live plants. I bought several Java and Anubias from the Aquarium Coop along with a bottle of the Easy Green. The plants have been in the aquarium for 6-8 weeks and the plants appear to be doing pretty well. The fish seem to really enjoy swimming through the live plants especially the Java Ferns. The Java Fern Windelov has started to show signs of hair algae on the ends of the plants. The fish have been nibbling at it and I cut back the length of the lights from 14 hours to around 10 hours and that seems to be keeping it at bay. It has not shown up on the other plants either. I checked for nitrates and they were running between 25 and 50 with 0 Nitrites. I use a Fluval filter with biological treatment and filtration and have not lost a fish in over a year. What should the nitrates be running when I am also adding 5 pumps of Easy Green per week for my 50 gallon aquarium? Should I add less Easy Green to reduce the nitrates? Appreciate any advice for this newby.
  16. I'm trying my hand at a full planted tank. I use flourish tabs and Easy-green twice a week with a Fluval 3.0 on the preset planted lighting. I've been reading about wanting to keep 20ppm of nitrates but after three doses of easy-green i still only have 5ppm. I only do 30% water changes weekly to keep my Ph stable for German blues. Am i doing something wrong or do i just need to keep dosing twice a week for longer?
  17. My tank has high nitrite levels and approximately 20 ppm nitrate. I have 0 ammonia so idk what to do. Should I continue doing water changes slightly every day to level out the nitrite level?
  18. Hi folks, I’m doing a bit of learning about fertilizer methods, and want to get a better handle on what I’m currently doing. I’m dosing Easygreen into my oto breeder tank, and I want to figure out exactly how much. Apologies in advance for mixed units, and I'm not even pretending to remember significant digits from school. In a nutshell, I want to know how many pumps of Easygreen it would take to achieve a nitrate level of 20ppm in a 30 gallon tank. Low end of recommended dose, and a means of calibrating my brain. 20ppm means that out of every theoretical 1,000,000 parts in a volume, 20 of those parts would be nitrate. So if 30 gallons of water weighs 113562.3g as mass (1 US gallon of water = 3,785.41 grams ), I want 2.271246g of that to be nitrate (113562.3*20/1,000,000). The label says Easygreen is 2.66% nitrogen. That's not nitrate, so we need to do an extra calc. The atomic mass of nitrogen and oxygen are 14.01 and 16 respectively, so nitrate is 22.59% nitrogen by mass (14.01/(14.01+3*16)*100). Getting back to our 2.271246g of theoretical nitrate above, that means we need to add 0.51307g of nitrogen specifically (2.271246*0.2259). So in a nutshell, how many pumps of Easygreen add 0.51307g of nitrogen? 2.66% by weight would be 0.0266 g/mL assuming Easygreen is roughly the same weight as water (1g/ml). So if 1 pump is 1 mL, and 1 mL contains 0.0266g of nitrogen, does that make 0.51307g total nitrogen/0.0266g nitrogen per pump or 19.3 pumps in 30 gallons make 20ppm from scratch? That seems high, so I think my math is wrong somewhere, but I can't see where. The rotalabutterfly calc site says 3.7g of KNO3 in 30 gals yields 20ppm, as a check. The molecular weight of KNO3 is about 101 vs 62 for nitrate, which checks well against my value since 3.7*62\101 is 2.27, which I calculated above. I’m just not sure on the pumps of liquid fert. Thanks in advance for anyone’s time!
  19. Hi All - perhaps someone has experienced the following. I am pretty diligent when it comes to monitoring water parameters and doing water changes (Including cleaning my sponge filters 3 days after vacuuming the tank). I keep my parameters within a healthy range and it rarely goes up above the first signs of concern. Two things, however, are always high. One is the water hardness, but I've learned to live with that being that in my country the water in general is hard and the fish here have adapted to the hardness. Believe it or not, even Discus are sold here and have adapted to the hardness of the water (21 dh). My problem is NO3. No matter what I do the NO3 is always between 50-100mg. 50% and even 75% water changes never bring it below 50mg. Does anybody no if that is normal in certain parts of the world? Being that it is not as dangerous as NO2 and also being that I do regular water changes should I worry about this at all?
  20. on my 75 gal planted tank my bio load is small 4 angels and 6 baby rams a cpl corys and a cpl more algae eaters dont know ther name and two timy bristle nose plecos. anyway i was always at 0 ppm nitrates so i didnt think i had to do a water change to much i even seen Corys video when he showed the last tour of his shop because he was moving locations and he said the big bins in the middle that he never changed the water. well i ended up with that cyn dont know the real spelling but blue green algae but i watched another of his videos and learned to fix it with erthromyacin . to make a long story short id like to know how i got it. was it fish waist built up? also another question about simple green and iron it has .13 iron and your not supposed to go over 5 does that mean if i dose twice a week id be overloaded with iron? or does the plants eat it up? thankyou everybody.
  21. Hi I am currently in a fishless cycle in a planted tank and have been for approximately 3 weeks adding 2-4ppm ammonia this is now being reduced to 0ppm within 12/16 hours. The Nitrites have stayed steady at .25ppm all the time and not increased or decreased. The Nitrates are around 5-10 ppm closer to 5. I have also added stability on a regular basis. What is happening ?? Can I do a partial water change to dilute the Nitrites and then safely add fish and stability at the recommended dose and time period along with Prime. Your advice is very much appreciated.
  22. Hello, I am looking for ideas for some of the fastest growing plants, weeds basically to add to my 75 gallon tank. It is already what most people consider overstocked but before I added the dojo loaches the nitrates stayed very low. My problem now is the dojo loaches are still young yet and they’ve already brought a significant bioload to the mix. I have no problem doing big water changes frequently MOST of the time, but I travel for work and while my girl can take care of feeding and water changes for the smaller tanks, I can’t expect her to service my 75 and 150. I know from experience duckweed grows super fast and would be exactly what I’m asking for, but i had it in here before and it covers the entire surface within a week or two. That’s with me pulling huge handfuls out every water change. I fear it steals all the light from the plants below. Current stocking in case anyone’s curious- 2 six inch dojo, 2 three inch gold dojo, 8 bronze Cory, 6 albino Cory, 7 adolfoi Cory, 4 trillineatus Cory, and something like 15-20 nerite snails. Jungle Val, Italian Val, corkscrew Val, bacopa, Anubias, a melon sword plant, small amounts of dwarf hair grass that will probably not take off into the carpet that I want it to, baby tears on driftwood, and some mosses. I’ll probably be forced to remove two of the four dojo’s when they grow bigger. I might have a pond by then or worst case I have friends who would want one. I know I’ll never pull off a wahlsted with this stocking especially since I will be adding more corydora in here, but I need the nitrates to slow down a bit. Any input is appreciated! The picture is freshly trimmed, the jungle Val reaches the top of the water and folds over once a week. Also the layout is little different now basically there is less rock and more room for plants. Here’s how it looks when I’ve been away for a week. Sounds like I’m answering my own question, as my jungle Val just explodes constantly but I would like other plants that grow just as fast if not faster.
  23. My question is about accumulating Nitrates vs. fertilizers like Easy Green. So, plants take in Nitrates, right? And we are told that short of be able to achieve a complete "Full Cycle", the only way to keep the Nitrates at bay in our aquariums is to do water changes. BTW, I'm using a Fluval 407 cannister filter packed with about 5-1/2 lbs of Biohome at the top and course, fine, and polishing sponge or physical media at the bottom. My community stocked 46 gallon bow front aquarium is cycled as far as ammonia and nitites are concerned. They are both at zero and holding steady. Ph is always around 7 to 7.2, water temperature is maintained at 77.5 by a 300w Fluval e series Heater, and the Nitrates are always around 40 to 80 ppm every time I test the water. I do gravel vacuum of 1/2 the gravel with about 50% water changes maybe every 2 to 3 weeks. I add 5 pumps of Easy Green weekly and I'm using a Fluval Plant 3.0 scheduled on the preset Planted Tank setting, but I still see water sprite in my tank browning lower down on the stems of the plant, but growing like crazy which I trim as it gets out of control. I use Root Tabs for the Crypts and Amazon Swords. The swords are doing so so, but the crypts are doing great and look very healthy, but are growing slowly. So, can someone unlock the mystery of why nitrates climb, but it looks like I need more fertilizer to possibly fix the water sprite browning I'm seeing or is it lighting that is needed, and too much Nitrates or visa versa. Am I misunderstanding how things are supposed to be working? Help! Any advise would be greatly appreciated. Larry in Pa
  24. So I've been dosing Easy Green since forever in my 75 gallon, and it wasn't until fairly recently that I actually read the online store's instructions. So if I'm reading correctly, after dosing fertilizers and after some time for it to mix in, it should register on water test kits as nitrate? If that's true, never seeing a significant increase in nitrates is probably a symptom of not dosing enough fertilizers? The tank is super over filtered but strictly with sponge and biomedia, so I don't think either would reduce nitrates. I also have been dosing 16 pumps about 4-5 times a week while also increasing my feedings to get more fish waste over the past 2 weeks. Thank you for the input!
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