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Old 02-22-2012, 12:29 PM   #1
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Bioballs Keep or Remove

Wish I had asked this before setting the tank up and letting it cycle adding fish etc. but Bioballs are they good or bad. I have read they are really good at turning harmful bacteria into nitrate which is a good thing right. But now I have nitrates not a serious problem. Somewhere around 15ppm 20 at most. I have performed numerous water changes now of 25% and one 50% but it's changed nothing. I have read up on drastic step water changes starting at 80% etc but don't want to ph shock anything and I am not experienced enough to handle the ph side yet. Plus I am worried the nitrates will be instantly back because of the Bioballs. I read somewhere a process of removing them slowly ans in sections but do I need to put something in their place?

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Old 02-22-2012, 12:30 PM   #2
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bioballs are nitrate factories.. I'd definitely remove them a couple at a time(unless you have no livestock then just rip them all out & cause another cycle in your tank.
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Old 02-22-2012, 12:53 PM   #3
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I have livestock. So will remove them slowly if that's the way forward. Now I assume they were there for some reason so should I put something in their place?
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Old 02-22-2012, 01:03 PM   #4
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Depends on what kind of bio media you have.
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Old 02-22-2012, 01:07 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EriksFish315 View Post
Depends on what kind of bio media you have.
very true. is this a FOWLR? reef? fw? Im assuming SW because of the snowcasso pic in your profile

How much LR do you have? how ibg is the tank?
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Old 02-22-2012, 01:34 PM   #6
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If you don't have many bio balls and lots of live rock you should be ale to just take out the bioballs
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Old 02-22-2012, 01:40 PM   #7
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The tank a reefmax came with a whole section built into the back full of Bioballs probably 50+ so would need to gradually remove them I think. I have 12k of live rock covered in diatoms and a good 2" of live sand. It's a 25g (us) tank. It has a built in skimmer that seems to be doing nothin most of the time a section full of Bioballs and a section for filtration. At the moment it's a fowlr setup but the plan has always been to get corals etc when it ready.
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Old 02-22-2012, 02:03 PM   #8
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Bio balls essentially aren't nitrate factories, it's how you care for the bio balls. They trap debris and fish waste, which if left in the filtration system eventually turn to nitrates. So, if you occasionally clean some then you don't have to worry about nitrate build-up. And removing all of them at once restarts your fish tank's cycle.

So now that they are causing nitrates, I'd say take them out in sections in order to keep the other good bacteria alive.
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Old 02-22-2012, 04:22 PM   #9
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Yeah do not take them out didn't realize that was how your system was.
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Old 02-22-2012, 04:34 PM   #10
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I would only removed the bioballs if you can exchange LR rubble and it can be submerged. This will help as far as Ammonia and nitrates and in the low flow areas will produce anerobic bacteria that will help out nitrates.
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