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Old 08-20-2005, 02:54 PM   #1
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Trying to keep nitrates in 10-20 range, but lev. not rising!

Background: My tap water has phosphate in it which gives me algea problems. Using some phosphate absorbing resin helps to get rid of it, but keeping my nitrates high (10:1 or 20:1 ratio makes it better)

I have been trying to raise my nitrate levels up in the 10-20 range, but the reading just isn't moving! I haven't changed any water in my tank in probably 3 weeks!! 8O 8O 8O

I have a pretty good fish load and I feed them once a day. I guess my plants are using all the nitrates.

QUESTION: So, is it ok to leave my water as is, or should I change some out anyways? I am afraid that some other waste chemicals that we don't commonly test for are building up.

FYI...current nitrate level is 5-10.
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Old 08-20-2005, 03:13 PM   #2
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A NO3 of 10 or more is great for the plants you have. Have you tried testing at different times during the week to see if there is any difference? Also, are you peforming PWC's?
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Old 08-20-2005, 05:39 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jchillin
Also, are you peforming PWC's?
I think you misread my post. I have done no PWCs in over 3 weeks in an attempt to bring my nitrates into the 10-20 range. However, the reading does not move. If I am in equilibrium with my plants, should I stop doing PWCs?

Seems bad to stop, as I am worried about other wastes building up that we don't test for.
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Old 08-20-2005, 05:44 PM   #4
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I definitely mis-read that one Have no worries, there won't be any build up of nasties in the tank. As the detrius breaks down, it penetrates the substrate, which is great for root feeders especially. I try not to change water in my tank for the very same reason and unless I get some unusual readings for the big 5 (NH3, NO2, NO3, kh and ph), I will not change the water. I do freshen it up every now and then with top offs or if I'm planting, pruning.
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Old 08-20-2005, 06:57 PM   #5
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Interesting! So, I guess I'll just keep doing what I am doing. Thanks
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Old 08-20-2005, 10:13 PM   #6
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Way to go! See how hard it is to do nothing sometimes?
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Old 08-20-2005, 10:36 PM   #7
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Ahhh...the beauty of the low light/low maintenance planted tank
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Old 08-21-2005, 12:29 AM   #8
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a small dose of NO3 could help.. HTH
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Old 08-21-2005, 01:43 PM   #9
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I'm not real fond of leaving dirty water in the tank just to build up nitrates. If its a low light tank, then just dose some Flourish Nitrogen, or pick up a half pound of KNO3 and you'll be set for 6months.

DOC's build up in the water over time, regardless of whether nitrates are building up.

you macro ratios look good for keeping things in balance. you might even want to dose some Excel or just DIY CO2. Even if you only got to 10ppm, your plants would look better, and the algae would get stunted.
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