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Old 02-19-2005, 10:39 PM   #1
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Nitrate question.....again

160 gal FO

I have 2 cannister filters and topics on here say those are havens for nitrates. Which I have and cant get below 20. Actually its in between 20-40 on my test kit. (Aquarium Pharmaceuticals). No matter how many times I change the water it seems like it wont go down. 15-20% of that much water isnt working. Im not sure about taking more than that out at one time.

The LFS showed me some stuff that I would put in the cannister filter to help with nitrates, but im skeptical. It looked like grey gravel and kinda chalky looking. Ive made some mistakes listening to those LFS's so I thought Id ask some experts before I spent 25$ on a bottle of junk.Is this stuff more of a short term fix??

Every other test I do is fine, ammonia, nitrites and PH. Just the nitrates wont drop. Ive tried feeding every other day and not the juice from the shrimp. Also Ive changed the water about once a week for 1.5 months and nothing.
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Old 02-19-2005, 10:45 PM   #2
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Are you cleaning the filter at water changes? If not try changing one of the two each week and alternate between the two. The buildup on the filter may be what is causing some of your nitrates.
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Old 02-19-2005, 10:59 PM   #3
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Ok,,,I can do that. I thought that was a no no though? Do I clean just the sponge or the whole thing back to brand new???
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Old 02-19-2005, 11:08 PM   #4
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Mainly just the filter media and a good complete cleaning every month or so. If you alternate between the two you will still keep some good bacteria growing. I have only one canister filter and clean it at every water change but I have plenty of LR to help in filtration.
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28gal bowfront
40lbs livesand(bag from LFS), 30lbs live rock(LR.com)
2 O. Clowns
1 peppermint shrimp, 5 red leg hermit crabs,
4 mexican turbo snails, 15 nassarius snails
ricordea mushroom, candy cane coral,
super color polyps, hairy mushrooms
bubble coral, hawiian feather duster
coralife lunar 2x65, HOT magnum canister
10 Gal refugium(chaeto) & seaclone skimmer
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Old 02-20-2005, 11:14 AM   #5
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Do I clean just the sponge or the whole thing back to brand new???
take out the sponge and media and rinse it in SW from the tank. You might want to think about putting some LR in the tank or LR rubble in the canisters. That will help out dramatically with nitrates.
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Old 02-20-2005, 12:53 PM   #6
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What do you have in the tank? Lr, Ls , crushed coral? How many fish and what kind. have you tested your water to see if there is NO3 in that new water? Are you using ro/di, tap?
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Old 02-20-2005, 04:44 PM   #7
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what's teh stocking of the tank?
lots of messy, carnivorous fish perhaps?

adding a fuge with its own lighting and some macro algae will lower nitrates.
do you have a protein skimmer going? that'll help remove the stuff that breaks down into nitrates.
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Old 02-20-2005, 06:21 PM   #8
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Sorry for not explaining more about the tank. All I have in there is a 4 inch yellow tang, 2 damsels that are left over from cycling, and a 4-5 inch volitan lionfish. I have a skimmer for a 200-300 gal tank. I have fine crushed coral for a bed. Yes I have tested my tap water(which i use for water changes) and there is zero nitrates in that. The tank is about 3 months old and Ive had nothing but problems and bad info from LFS trying to make a sell. LFS guy told me that everything would be fine if I bought this and that, now its not and hes trying to sell me more stuff. Thats why I thought Id ask here. He told me that these little gray chalky rocks called "nitrate sponge" (brand name KENT) would work great and solve my problems. Yeah right. I wanted to ask you guys if that stuff works at all or is it more of a short term fix??? That stuff for my tank would cost about 50$ and my gut feeling is its crap.
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Old 02-21-2005, 11:06 AM   #9
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That stuff for my tank would cost about 50$ and my gut feeling is its crap.
It is always better to find and correct the causes of poor water parameters they to add chemicals to your tank. I have not persoanllly used a nitrate sponge so I do not know how well they work.
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I have fine crushed coral for a bed.
This could be part f the problem. CC is know for causing high nitrates becuase detritus can get caught in it. Best defense if to vacuum the CC on a regular basis and use RO/DI for topp off and water changes.
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Old 02-21-2005, 02:08 PM   #10
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lando hit it on the head. just like the builup on your filters it will also buildup in the CC substrate. Either get into a routine of vacuuming it regulerly or change it out to LS.
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40lbs livesand(bag from LFS), 30lbs live rock(LR.com)
2 O. Clowns
1 peppermint shrimp, 5 red leg hermit crabs,
4 mexican turbo snails, 15 nassarius snails
ricordea mushroom, candy cane coral,
super color polyps, hairy mushrooms
bubble coral, hawiian feather duster
coralife lunar 2x65, HOT magnum canister
10 Gal refugium(chaeto) & seaclone skimmer
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