Go Back   Aquarium Advice - Aquarium Forum Community > Freshwater > Freshwater & Brackish - Getting Started
Click Here to Login

Join Aquarium Advice Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com
 
Old 02-20-2012, 03:12 PM   #1
Aquarium Advice Newbie
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 4
Crazy high nitrites, HELP!

Hello everyone.

I am new to tanks and could use some setup advice. I purchased a 10g tank and set everything up and used SeaChem Stability for a couple days to cycle, then began introducing fish. Everything was fine for a while, but after some time the fish started looking sick, so I tested the water and found very high Nitrites (6-7ppm). So I got all the fish out (they are currently housed in some friends tanks). I emptied everything out and started fresh. After getting everything back in the tank with new water, I once again used the Stability solution for 7 days (as recommended by the bottle). I also got filter media and a little water from some friends. It has now been 3 weeks since I started this process and the Nitrites are higher than ever (above 10ppm), and they have been this way for about 2 weeks. Everything I have read suggests that they shouldn't ever get this high even during a cycle.

Any advice is greatly appreciated. Also ~ sorry if this is in the wrong forum or anything, I'm new here.

Thanks!
__________________

__________________
xandergrzy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2012, 04:08 PM   #2
Look It Up
 
librarygirl's Avatar


 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Rhode Island
Posts: 7,052
Hi and welcome. What test kit are you using? Strips aren't very accurate, a liquid kit is best (API Master kit).

Unfortunately you didn't properly cycle the tank first. Cycling means growing the proper bacteria in your filters to consume the ammonia your fish put out; the ammonia is then converted to nitrite and then nitrate. In a fully cycled tank you'll never see ammonia or nitrite on the test (unless somethign is wrong), and nitrates would be controlled through weekly water changes. This process can take 1-3 months on average.

Products like stability are every unreliable. Most don't contain the correct bacteria and of those that do it's very hard keeping bacteria viable that's sitting in a bottle on the shelf.

How long after you got fish did nitrites rise? Testing your tap water for ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate isa good idea too so you know what you're starting with. Did you check for ammonia as well?

What kind of fish did you get? Overstocking too fast could be an issue too.

Since you have fish you're in a fish-in cycle. I'd stop adding the stability. What are you using for dechlorinator? Prime is best if you can get it but whatever you have on-hand is fine.

With nitrite that high you're going to have to do some serious water changes to get them down, probably multiple back-to-back 60-70% water changes over a couple of days.

Once nitrites are down, you want to test the water daily for ammonia and nitrite and nitrate. Any time ammonia and/or nitrite are over .25, do water change(s) to get them down.

Of course this is assuming the tank isn't overstocked. If you have too many fish or inappropriate fish for a 10 gal it'll be tougher to keep on top of water changes to keep the levels down.

There's a link below in my signature: new tank with fish. It's a fish-in cycle guide that'll help. You might also want to check out the "guide to starting a FW aquarium."

Hope this helps.
__________________

__________________
Every living thing is significant.
🐠 Guide to Starting a Freshwater Aquarium
Community Rules | Custom Site Search
librarygirl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2012, 04:16 PM   #3
Aquarium Advice Newbie
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 4
Hello, and thanks for the reply,

currently there are no fish in the tank, I got them all out after the fist time the nitrites got too high, I have emptied everything out and started over without fish, at this time I'm pretty nervous about putting them back in prematurely. What I don't understand is how the nitrites got so high again with no fish in there, I have some plants but its a VERY minimal amount. I was thinking of emptying and starting fresh AGAIN, this time without using Stability, but with the nitrites this high, I would think that I'm doing something HORRIBLY wrong. I've also started doing water changed a couple times a week, should I increase this?

Thanks again!
__________________
xandergrzy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2012, 04:20 PM   #4
Aquarium Advice Newbie
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 4
Oh and I was using aqua-safe for dechlorinator, forgot to mention that
__________________
xandergrzy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2012, 04:26 PM   #5
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
boadams87's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Kershaw SC
Posts: 1,702
Quote:
Originally Posted by xandergrzy
Hello, and thanks for the reply,

currently there are no fish in the tank, I got them all out after the fist time the nitrites got too high, I have emptied everything out and started over without fish, at this time I'm pretty nervous about putting them back in prematurely. What I don't understand is how the nitrites got so high again with no fish in there, I have some plants but its a VERY minimal amount. I was thinking of emptying and starting fresh AGAIN, this time without using Stability, but with the nitrites this high, I would think that I'm doing something HORRIBLY wrong. I've also started doing water changed a couple times a week, should I increase this?

Thanks again!
That's normal when a tank is cycling!
__________________
boadams87 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2012, 04:27 PM   #6
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
boadams87's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Kershaw SC
Posts: 1,702
http://www.aquariumadvice.com/articl...now/Page2.html
__________________
boadams87 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2012, 04:29 PM   #7
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
boadams87's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Kershaw SC
Posts: 1,702
http://www.aquariumadvice.com/articl...ing/Page1.html
__________________
boadams87 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2012, 04:32 PM   #8
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
Ponch's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: CT
Posts: 295
Quote:
Originally Posted by xandergrzy
Hello, and thanks for the reply,

currently there are no fish in the tank, I got them all out after the fist time the nitrites got too high, I have emptied everything out and started over without fish, at this time I'm pretty nervous about putting them back in prematurely. What I don't understand is how the nitrites got so high again with no fish in there, I have some plants but its a VERY minimal amount. I was thinking of emptying and starting fresh AGAIN, this time without using Stability, but with the nitrites this high, I would think that I'm doing something HORRIBLY wrong. I've also started doing water changed a couple times a week, should I increase this?

Thanks again!
If the fish are out and the nitrites are sky high then you dont have anything to worry about.

It takes time for the nitrite >> nitrate bacteria to colonize and start converting that nitrite to nitrate.

Again assuming fish are out of tank currently just run a ph test to make sure it has not dropped below 6-6.5. Cycling can do weird things to ph and if it drops too low the cycle will stall.

If ph is normal and nitrites high best thing you do is have patience. In addition to other fishless cycle basics like having temp in upper 80's, having plenty of aeration, etc. I don't think water changes are necessary before you are ready to add fish.
__________________
Ponch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2012, 05:48 PM   #9
Aquarium Advice Newbie
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 4
Thanks for all the help guys. This has calmed me down a bit, The tests are also showing slightly low alkalinity and somewhat soft water, is this something to address?
__________________
xandergrzy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2012, 06:11 PM   #10
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
boadams87's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Kershaw SC
Posts: 1,702
Quote:
Originally Posted by xandergrzy
Thanks for all the help guys. This has calmed me down a bit, The tests are also showing slightly low alkalinity and somewhat soft water, is this something to address?
If it's not to low they will adjust to it. It stresses them out when you add stuff to adjust the ph
__________________
boadams87 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2012, 08:18 PM   #11
Look It Up
 
librarygirl's Avatar


 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Rhode Island
Posts: 7,052
Sorry I misread, thought you had gotten the fish back. It's possible the bacteria stuff caused the nitrite to spike. Either that or your tap water has high nitrite.

You'll need to decide at this point whether you want to get the fish back and do a fish-in cycle or cycle fishless. Letting a tank run isn't cycling so if you want to fishless cycle the tank you'll need to add ammonia. There's a link below in my signature: guide to starting a FQ aquarium. The first thing it covers is cycling; it has links to both the fish-in and fishless cycle guides so read both and pick one.
__________________

__________________
Every living thing is significant.
🐠 Guide to Starting a Freshwater Aquarium
Community Rules | Custom Site Search
librarygirl is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
high nitrites, nitrites

Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
High Nitrates - Overstocked? meloyelo Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion 38 02-23-2012 01:37 PM
HELP PLEASE!!!!!! Cichlids and snails Bigtay Cichlid Discussion 12 02-20-2012 09:14 PM
Need Help!! New_Love_For_Cichlids Cichlid Discussion 19 02-20-2012 08:16 PM
Help id please! acolotto Saltwater & Reef - Identification 0 02-20-2012 03:09 PM
Coral help Robbiesamp Saltwater & Reef - Sick Fish or Coral 4 02-20-2012 01:31 PM







» Photo Contest Winners







All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:06 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.