First a little background. I don't know all of the terminoligy so bear with me
tank (will be fish only) crushed coral substrate. 20 gal
tank with Bio Balls and a sump pump (what ever it's called).
We set up the tank 3-4 years ago and did a terrible job with it and finally the fish died off after a rather large red/brown algae problem. We left the system running for the last 2-3 years and just topped off the water occasionally. We are now ready to get serious about it and have a few quick questions.
Bio Balls. I've read in the reef forums that they are a not the great system once thought but how about for a fish only tank? If bio balls are bad then what would they be replaced with?
We just did a 30% water change and ran some tests. The one thing that was way out of wack was Nitrate... OFF the scale high. Ammonia was .25 . I don't recall ph
and nitrite but they were close to, if not on, recommended levels. We are going to continue with weekly (maybe twice a week) water changes to try and bring the nitrates down.
I know we have a lot of work to do. Does any one have any recommendations on where to start?