Nitrate high and Alkalinity low - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 12-30-2018, 01:54 AM Thread Starter
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Nitrate high and Alkalinity low

Hi all, I cleaned my tank yesterday and stirred up the substrate more than normal. My nitrate is up a little and I'm about to travel for five days so I'm worried. I'll have someone house sitting but they know nothing about fish.

My water numbers are below with tank details.
48 gallon planted tank
HOB filter with filter floss and bioballs (no carbon)
Nitrate - 20 (usually 0)
Nitrite - 0
Chlorine - 0
Alkalinity - 75 (usually 120-140)
Ph - 6.9

Tank mates:
5 neon tetra
3 glow skirt tetra
3 adult platty
2 sub-adult platty (7 months)
6 baby platty (3.5 months)
2 adult bristle nose plecos
Male maybe guarding another clutch of babies.
20 baby bristle nose plecos (3.5 months)
2 dwarf corey catfish
2 mystery snails
Tons of plants

Before cleaning the tank I removed and donated: 30 platty babies, 10 pleco babies, 2 adult platty.

Should I do a partial water change again tonight? Other suggestions?

We normally only rinse the filter floss every week and do a 15-25% water change every 3-4 weeks. We do not use charcoal or any chemicals other than Prime and a pinch of baking soda when adding new water. We add Stress coat anytime we introduce a new fish or if we have to net anyone.
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 12-30-2018, 04:39 AM
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That's still pretty low for nitrates, and your previous readings may have been invalid because that test is a royal pain in the butt...

You could double that NO3 and still be fine. Personally, I'm a huge fan of consistency, so if parameters truly are dramatically different than normal, I would do a second water change to address that. I think that's more of a personal opinion, and you should be safe either way.
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