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Old 10-07-2019, 07:15 PM   #1
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High Nitrates

Greetings

After 3 20% to 25% partial water changes my Nitrates are still running in the 80 to 100 ppm range.

Details
60 gallon planted tank.

Ammonia 0 ppm
Nitrites 0 ppm
pH 6.8 to 7.2

All plants are healthy

There we 4 fish totaling about 12 to 14 inches of length.

Any advice on how to lower the Nitrates would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 10-07-2019, 08:11 PM   #2
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Big water changes. If you have 100 ppm 50% will bring you to 50, then another 50 would bring you to 25ppm. Or assuming you donít have anything funky in your tap water just do a 75-80% change. Then reduce your feeding am some and increase your weekly percentage on the change to keep you where you want to be
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Old 10-07-2019, 08:45 PM   #3
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Water changes are the quickest way to reduce nitrates . You can add more plants in the tank , add floating plants as they are nitrate hogs , and you can grow terrestrial plants with their roots in the tank and they will use a lot of nitrates . Pothos and Arrowhead are 2 of the most used and available at a lot of stores . Don't overfeed , and vacuum the substrate when doing water changes . I have as many plants as fish in my tanks and I have to add nitrogen at times....lol
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Old 10-08-2019, 01:14 PM   #4
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Make sure to test the source water. Maybe it is high in nitrates. If that's the case you need to dilute your tap water with RO or Distilled water.
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Old 10-08-2019, 03:48 PM   #5
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Hello Eagle...

Small water changes won't do much to reduce nitrates. You need to gradually reduce the amount you feed and work up to the point you remove and replace half or more of the tank water every week. Large, weekly water changes will ensure a steady water chemistry.

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Old 10-08-2019, 09:59 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by kashif314 View Post
Make sure to test the source water. Maybe it is high in nitrates. If that's the case you need to dilute your tap water with RO or Distilled water.
Tested the tap source, 0 ppm nitrates. Thanks for that info though.
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Old 10-08-2019, 10:01 PM   #7
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I vacuum the substrate once a month, but will start more often.

How much harm will a large water change do to the nitrogen cycle?
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Old 10-09-2019, 10:28 AM   #8
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None, the bb isnít affected
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Old 10-09-2019, 06:16 PM   #9
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High Nitrates

If you leave things alone long enough your tank will create areas within the substrate capable of denitrification. That is, a bacteria will grow in low oxygen levels that will use nitrate as Ďfoodí

Unfortunately, most aquarium owners will never make it to this stage. Vacuuming the gravel with disturbed this process.

Iím sorry to come here contradicting everything that is written but this is a fact.

I donít change water, feed heavily and donít have a filter yet my nitrate test never registers anything. Having plenty of plants will help use ammonia before it has a chance to become nitrate too.
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Old 10-10-2019, 07:31 AM   #10
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High Nitrates

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Originally Posted by Caliban07 View Post
If you leave things alone long enough your tank will create areas within the substrate capable of denitrification. That is, a bacteria will grow in low oxygen levels that will use nitrate as Ďfoodí

Unfortunately, most aquarium owners will never make it to this stage. Vacuuming the gravel with disturbed this process.

Iím sorry to come here contradicting everything that is written but this is a fact.

I donít change water, feed heavily and donít have a filter yet my nitrate test never registers anything. Having plenty of plants will help use ammonia before it has a chance to become nitrate too.


While true, this isnít a safe or the easiest way to lower already high nitrate levels so this is kind of a pointless post...
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Old 10-10-2019, 08:32 AM   #11
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High Nitrates

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Originally Posted by BigRedsReefs10 View Post
While true, this isnít a safe or the easiest way to lower already high nitrate levels so this is kind of a pointless post...

For ease, leaving things alone is probably the easiest thing you can do.

For safety, you would need to ascertain whether nitrate is more problematic for the fish as opposed to the water you are using to lower nitrate levels.

You can use RO water for a few changes to bring the levels down. Bioload doesnít sound too heavy. Use more plants.
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