Non-Planted 125 Nitrates questions
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Old 02-13-2013, 05:32 AM   #1
Adamson
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Non-Planted 125 Nitrates questions


Ammonia-->Nitrites-->Nitrates



That is how the cycle goes right?



Now obviously I am at the point where I never get readings of Ammonia or Nitrites, but my Nitrates have always been sky-high. I know there are a little bit of Nitrates in my tap water (which sucks) but whenever I use my API test kit testing Nitrates my results are a very bold blood red. Which means lots of Nitrates, I can't remember but I believe it is 40 or 60+ ppm which is ridiculous and unacceptable. I do weekly water changes of at least 33%. This is my 125 that I am referring to.



Now if water changes are the only way to get rid of Nitrates, is there any way to prevent them? Would more filtration help keep them down at all?



Currently I have a 2217 and AC110 on my 125 and I am thinking about adding another filter (a 2260) if it would help at all.


Thanks in advance.
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Old 02-13-2013, 05:49 AM   #2
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What are your nitrate levels like straight from your tap?

Have you cleaned your filters recently?

Do you have any plants?
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Old 02-13-2013, 05:58 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkblade48 View Post
What are your nitrate levels like straight from your tap?

Have you cleaned your filters recently?

Do you have any plants?
It has been a while since I tested the tap, but I believe it is ~10 ppm.

I cleaned both of them during my water change a week ago (6 days ago).

And I don't have plants in this tank.
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Old 02-13-2013, 05:58 AM   #4
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High levels of chloramines in your tap will also result in high nitrates.
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Old 02-13-2013, 06:35 AM   #5
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At first I was like... 125 questions? LOL
Ok jokes aside, did you properly cycle the tank? You should add some floaters, they help a lot! Good luck!
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Old 02-13-2013, 07:52 AM   #6
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Default Non-Planted 125 Nitrates questions

what's the stocking in your tank...?

unfortunately no amount of extra filtration will get rid of nitrates
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Old 02-13-2013, 08:06 AM   #7
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The only way to reduce nitrates without the aid of plants or water changes is to build a nitrate reactor. With that said, you should be doing larger water changes if you have a non-planted tank. What kind of livestock do you keep?
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Old 02-13-2013, 01:13 PM   #8
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In that tank I have an African Tiger Fish (4"), 5 Tinfoil Barbs (2"), a Jardini Arowana (3.5"), an Apolo Shark (10"), a Pictus cat (2.5"), and I added a large Black Ghost Knife (9").

Previously I had some cichlids in there and they were eating a ton. I'm sure that added to it.

I would love to plant it, unfortunately there is tons of flow in there with 3 Koralia 1400s and then air stones and filter output as well.
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Old 02-13-2013, 01:15 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kinection View Post
At first I was like... 125 questions? LOL
Ok jokes aside, did you properly cycle the tank? You should add some floaters, they help a lot! Good luck!
And yeah it is cycled, I never get readings of ammonia or nitrites. I brought over used media from another tank as well as the sand, driftwood, etc. So enough BB was brought over and I never had a cycle. This tank has been up for about a month. I never really had a mini cycle either. Not that I tested the water during, anyway.
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Old 02-13-2013, 07:31 PM   #10
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Yeah, if you don't have plants, then water changes is about the only way to significantly reduce nitrates. I think there is some measure of dinitrification going on in the substrate, some of the bio films, and possibly driftwood pores, but I don't imagine it's on a scale large enough to help much with water chemistry.

Plants help since they will absorb the ammonia directly, and metabolize it into tissues, removing it from the water column entirely, and bypassing the cycle.

You may be able to add things like anubias and java fern to rocks/wood. or possibly try one of the bulb plants - you can get the bulbs by themselves for pretty cheap, and just see if they manage to grow in and adapt to your tank conditions.

Another option would be to use some big floaters (water lettuce, water hyacinth, etc.), or to put houseplant clippings in (stuff like pothos, ivy, syngonium, etc.) - check the planted HOB thread for some ideas
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african tiger fish, ammonia, nitrates, nitrites, payara

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