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Old 05-04-2014, 10:08 AM   #1
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Exclamation Help!! Nitrates off the charts!

Hoping someone will chime in rather quickly....

Have been cycling my 75 gallon for several weeks now (fishless) and reached the finish line yesterday. Did a 90 or more % water change....

Before change:

Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: off the chart
pH: 7.3-7.6

After change:

Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: off the chart...still

Anything I can do about this??
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Old 05-04-2014, 10:10 AM   #2
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90% again?
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Old 05-04-2014, 11:08 AM   #3
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Any reasoning behind that?? Just wondering why I should expect a different result, since my tap water is reading 0 Nitrates and I'm adding prime and bringing the replacement water to temperature properly before adding it. Should I or should I not be wringing out the filter media in the "old" tank water. AS I said before, I am doing a fishless cycle and dosing ammonia, not using flake food to "gum up" the filter media
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Old 05-04-2014, 11:31 AM   #4
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Of course there's reasoning behind it, even if it didn't bring the nitrrAtes off the chart the first time it still brought hem down. Very time you do a water change it brings your parameters down. So my reasoning is that it might bring them down to the chart the second because your already took a lot of them off the first!
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Old 05-04-2014, 11:58 AM   #5
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should probably add that I emptied the tank all the way down to the top of the gravel, so could the trates have been so high that they are still reading off the charts after basically emptying the tank? should I rinse out the filter media in a bucket of dechlorinated water? running 2 AC 110's....they don't look dirty at all
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Old 05-04-2014, 12:02 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by angeladawng View Post
should probably add that I emptied the tank all the way down to the top of the gravel, so could the trates have been so high that they are still reading off the charts after basically emptying the tank? should I rinse out the filter media in a bucket of dechlorinated water? running 2 AC 110's....they don't look dirty at all

Are you sure you testing right?
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Old 05-04-2014, 12:02 PM   #7
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Are you sure about your tap water parameters?
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Old 05-04-2014, 12:07 PM   #8
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The top of the chart is what, like 120ppm? You may well have had 2000 ppm or something like that.

Shaking off the filter in the tank was, for me, perfectly all right and I read it's a food thing to do to get bacteria to populate everywhere while cycling. After cycling, shake it off in a bucket of dirty tank water.

During my cycle I got truer read of my nitrates by doing .5 ml tank water in 4.5 ml tap or distilled (whatever has 0 nitrates that's convenient for you), the. Multiply the result by 10. It's hard to tell what's what after 40ppm.

Congrats by the way!
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Old 05-04-2014, 12:30 PM   #9
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Positive on the tap water question....have tested it several times...always says 0 trates.

Wish they would make the test color results easier to differentiate.... they are just too close for my eyes. What looks like 80 to one person could look like 40 to another....UGH.

I don't think it's as bad as I think it is and will try to take a picture of the result when I get home from work. Will also try the other testing tip that was mentioned....
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Old 05-04-2014, 12:33 PM   #10
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Are you sure you testing right?


5ml of tank water in the little tube, 10 drops from bottle #1, cap and shake, shake bottle #2 for 30 seconds, add 10 drops into tube, cap and shake for 1 full minute....I'm even setting the timer on the microwave to make sure I'm doing it long enough....wait 5 minutes and read result....
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