Nitrites in my planted tank - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-22-2010, 11:53 PM Thread Starter
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Nitrites in my planted tank

I have had this aquarium set up for years, and recently converted it to a planted tank. I changed the substrate, but I kept the same filter media. That was a few months ago. Everything seemed to be fine until a couple of weeks ago. I saw one of the clown loaches scraping against rocks and such and I believed he was acting like he had ick (although I never saw any spots), but I treated him and the tank by raising the temp and adding salt. He responded well to the treatment so I assume that ick was the problem. After treatment, I tested the water, and the nitrites in the tank are at 0.25ppm. I have been doing water changes every other day and by the second day they are back at 0.25ppm again.

Do you think the salt treatment caused this? Is the tank cycling again? This is getting frustrating having to change the water every other day.

I don't know if this is going to be an ongoing issue, or if it will become normal and back to 0ppm again.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-23-2010, 12:29 AM
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You sure the nitrites weren't out of balance before the ich treatment?

Might be time to clean your filter... I suspect you've got some organic buildup somewhere that's the cause of your problem rather than the cycle if the tank has been set up that long w/out any major changes.

Perhaps the salt caused some of the plants to die back?





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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-23-2010, 01:26 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the quick response..

I did suspect the filter, so I cleaned it out yesterday and did a 50% water change, and today the nitrites were back up to 0.25ppm. So I did another 50% water change about an hour ago.

Any other ideas?

I also haven't really noticed a lot of dying plants. I've been trimming the dead leaves and removing them as well.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-23-2010, 01:31 PM
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You didn't completely remove all the bacteria from the filter, and rinse it in chlorinated water, did you? Rinsing in chlorinated water will kill the bacteria and cause your filter to cycle again.

But, if you had buildup on your filter, preventing enough bacteria from growing to eat up the nitrites, then the nitrite level would rise. Hopefully, after swishing the filter in dechlorinated water, will remove non-bacterial buildup, and things will get back into balance soon.

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-23-2010, 02:33 PM
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Do you have an undergravel filter?
If so, it needs to be "sucked out"
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-23-2010, 03:12 PM
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Keep 1 teaspoon of salt per 20 gallons of water will reduce nitrite poisoning, AKA brown blood disease. This is a very low level, OK for plants and fish. You could use other sources of chloride, instead, but do some research about the dose. Google Brown Blood Disease for more info.

When the NO2 is under control, then allow regular water changes to remove the salt.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-24-2010, 02:33 AM Thread Starter
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I used tank water to clean out the filter. I tested again today and it appears that the nitrite levels have stayed down, so hopefully cleaning out the filter fixed the problem.

Thanks everyone
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