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Old 06-29-2012, 03:31 PM   #1
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Using products to reduce nitrate and phosphates

I'm looking to add corals to my 150G FOWLR tank soon. I took some measurements last night of my tank:

Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: 0
pH: 8.0
Nitrate: between 40 and 80 ppm
Phosphate: 5 ppm
Calcium: 500 ppm
KH: about 11-12 dKH

From what I've researched, these values are acceptable with two exceptions: Nitrate and Phosphate. I realize that the best approach to lowering these is water changes, which I plan on doing lots of. I was looking at a couple of other ways to supplement that, though, and I came across some Seachem products at my LFS that claim to help out.

PhosGuard and Denitrate look to be what I'm looking for, but I thought I'd ask around here to see if anyone had any experience with them, or if there's something else I could do that would be better.

Also, I've heard lots of different numbers, but what are my goals for these levels before I add corals?

-Adam Horton-
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Old 06-29-2012, 04:41 PM   #2
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I would look into a more natural approach to nitrate reduction. Do some reading on algae turf scrubbers they work really well and IMO the best thing I added to my system.

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Give it to Porc Chop he'll eat anything!!!!!
"This is my tank and these other fish just live in it"
^ Quoted from Porc Chop^
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Old 06-29-2012, 05:18 PM   #3
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Nitrates as close to 0ppm as possible (10ppm at the most) and phosphates at 0.
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Old 06-29-2012, 05:18 PM   #4
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I used phosguard on my nano it worked sum but not realy good enough to buy again imo
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Old 06-30-2012, 12:41 AM   #5
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According to Seachem tech support, Denitrate will at some point in time stop working when the pores get clogged from detritus.
Kind Regards,
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Old 06-30-2012, 03:17 AM   #6
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Neither of those products will fix the issue. The issue is why and how you have 5ppm phosphate!!! And 40 nitrates. Corals will not survive or grow under those conditions. So how did they get that way? If you fix the problem you would not need any phos/nitrate media and your tank will be able to grow and sustain coral.

So what are you doing that resulted in this?
What is your setup? Filtration, water, feeding, livestock?
29g Mixed Reef, 150w 14k Phoenix MH w/ Moonlights, Reef Octopus BH1000 HOB Skimmer, Ecotech Vortech MP10es, ReefKeeper Lite (Plus), PH Probe, Temp Probe, ATO, Carbon/GFO Reactor.
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Old 06-30-2012, 05:16 AM   #7
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go on red seas website . there is a product called no po or something nitrate and phosphate remover . iv been using it for a while it works well .
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Old 06-30-2012, 12:46 PM   #8
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Schism: A little more background...

Water - I use tap water conditioned with Prime. I realize that I should probably be using RO/DI water. I will do tests on my tap water to find out if it's contributing to the phosphate issue.

Filtration - I use about 250 lbs of live rock for my biological filtration. Just last night I saw my protein skimmer wasn't producing any skimmate so I took it apart and found the problem (there was a clog in the airline). Since then it's been going crazy collecting skimmate.

Livestock/feeding - 5 damsels, 3 tangs, 2 cardinals, maybe 20 snails in the sand. I'm planning to get a couple more fish as well. They get fed once every day what they'll eat in two minutes, pellet food and various kinds of frozen food, plus algae for the tangs. I realize that this probably contributes to the high nitrates/phosphates, especially since I don't strain out my food before putting it in the tank.

The nitrates are probably that high mostly because I'm still recovering from a nitrate spike earlier. I've never measured the phosphates in this tank before. My goal is to make the levels stable before I get them down to acceptable reef levels. I mainly want to find out what all the tricks in my arsenal are for getting the levels down and keeping them down. I understand how these products work -- they soak up nitrates/phosphates until they are "full" of them, and then the media must be changed. I just wanted to see how effective these products are, and if they're better used regularly to help maintain appropriate levels or to get the levels down to where they need to be (or both, or neither).

Tank Specs | Adam's Flog <--link to all the details on this tank in case you need it.

-Adam Horton-
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nitrate, phosphates

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