General Aquaria Discussion • I've got very high nitrate levels and very low pH. HELP!

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Postby PsYcHoTiC_MaDmAn » Sat May 17, 2008 9:30 pm

I cheat, got a sump pump to empty the waste water, and refil

but I have a collection of 25g boxes, 20g bin, and 10g boxes (I use the rubbermaid containers to premix the water)
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Postby NY SURF RIDER » Sun May 18, 2008 7:02 pm

Did a nice water change earlier, the nitrates are still through the roof but atleast the pH has gone up to 6.2.. I'll keep plugging away at the nitrates with daily 30% water changes and hopefully have them down to under 40ppm after a week, then hopefully weekly water changes of 40% will be enough to keep everything running smoothly.

Thanks for the advice.
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Postby DJRansome » Sun May 18, 2008 8:38 pm

If you did a 30% water change and there are no nitrates in the tap water, the nitrates should have been reduced 30%.
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Postby Laurel » Sun May 18, 2008 9:59 pm

You should get a Python water change system. Especially with a tank that big, I can't imagine doing water changes that way. They're also helpful in doing large water changes because a 1% change is no more work than a 75% water change. :)
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Postby NY SURF RIDER » Sun May 18, 2008 11:02 pm

What's the python system, how does it work?
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Postby NY SURF RIDER » Sun May 18, 2008 11:03 pm

DJRansome wrote:If you did a 30% water change and there are no nitrates in the tap water, the nitrates should have been reduced 30%.



I was told this on another site: The reduction (dilution) of nitrates is linear. For example, if the nitrate level is 50 ppm and you perform a 50% water change, the nitrates will drop to 25 ppm.
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Postby DJRansome » Mon May 19, 2008 6:58 am

The Python is a long hose with gravel cleaner tube at one end and faucet attachment at the other end. The faucet attachment (called a pump) can be switched to either suck water out of the tank or pump water into the tank. No buckets!

I takes 20 minutes to remove half the water in my 125G and the same amount of time to refill. And as long as you don't forget, you can do other things while it is refilling.

Regarding the impact of a water change on nitrates, I have never heard that nor has it been my experience. Perhaps one of the mods will chime in and correct me.
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Postby NY SURF RIDER » Mon May 19, 2008 12:20 pm

Hmm that'd be great... Do you know if it can be adjusted to fit around any style faucet?
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Postby Laurel » Mon May 19, 2008 1:36 pm

There is a brass thingy that screws onto the faucet. I just leave mine on the faucet and screw the plastic thing on when it's time for water changes.

One thing that I thought of if you're still having trouble controlling nitrates is to get some floating plants like duckweed or hornwort. They'll suck the nitrates out quickly as they grow, and you can just throw out excess. Of course this isn't a viable substitution for water changes as they remove more than nitrates(pheromones and other wastes), but they can help to control them.
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Postby NY SURF RIDER » Mon May 19, 2008 9:07 pm

Yeah I've heard about the duckweed.. I'm gonna go check for it this week at the LFS.

Man today was a pain in the rear.. I vaccumed out about 30-40% of the water.. and when I went to refill the tank... I noticed the water coming out of the faucet was nasty brownish/green... I guess they were doing the pipes in the neighborhood or it was due to the heavy rains we've had... but I had to let the tank sit half filled with the Fluvals spraying in the air for 5 hours before the tap water started to look decent.
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high nitrates

Postby barbarian206 » Thu May 22, 2008 5:46 pm

hi i dont know if this will help you but i have a 55 gallon and i had 100ppm nitrates a freind of mine who has saltwater tanks told me to try this it works in salt water tanks so i tried it and it worked for me and my nitrates are at 10ppm this is how it worked with none of my fish diying do a 70 % water reduction cleaning the gravel then fill it back up then do a 50 % water reduction cleaning gravel then do a 20 % water reduction fill it back up the put the necessary stuff like cichlid salt and the ph buffer take test after 24 hrs. and my test was outstanding it was zero but now it satble at 10 ppm with weekly water change of 20 % dont know if you want to try it but i cant say it would work for any one i took a chance with it because evryone was saying your fish would die but they rather enjoyed it . just thought you would like to know i cant hold a gun to your head . :fish: :fish: :fish:
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Postby NY SURF RIDER » Thu May 22, 2008 11:47 pm

You did the 70%, 50%, and 20% all in the same day?
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Re: high nitrates

Postby TheeMon » Fri May 23, 2008 9:15 am

barbarian206 wrote:hi i dont know if this will help you but i have a 55 gallon and i had 100ppm nitrates a freind of mine who has saltwater tanks told me to try this it works in salt water tanks so i tried it and it worked for me and my nitrates are at 10ppm this is how it worked with none of my fish diying do a 70 % water reduction cleaning the gravel then fill it back up then do a 50 % water reduction cleaning gravel then do a 20 % water reduction fill it back up the put the necessary stuff like cichlid salt and the ph buffer take test after 24 hrs. and my test was outstanding it was zero but now it satble at 10 ppm with weekly water change of 20 % dont know if you want to try it but i cant say it would work for any one i took a chance with it because evryone was saying your fish would die but they rather enjoyed it . just thought you would like to know i cant hold a gun to your head . :fish: :fish: :fish:


i would advise not to do this. i do a 75% water change once, then tryed to do a 2nd big water change (like 50% or so) right after and the shock of that much new water killed my whole tank execpt 2 yellow labs... i mean i lost 30+ fish in 5 mins, watching them flop around dieing and i couldnt help them
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Postby PsYcHoTiC_MaDmAn » Fri May 23, 2008 9:12 pm

NY SURF RIDER wrote:
DJRansome wrote:If you did a 30% water change and there are no nitrates in the tap water, the nitrates should have been reduced 30%.



I was told this on another site: The reduction (dilution) of nitrates is linear. For example, if the nitrate level is 50 ppm and you perform a 50% water change, the nitrates will drop to 25 ppm.


it is, so if its 100ppm, then the levels would have been reduced by 30ppm.

barbarian206, I really wouldn't recommend your method, the problem is that you will have a massive difference in the water going in to what the fish were used to and this will stress or even kill the fish.
I have done 90% WC before (even done 100%). but the water I was using was more or less the same, the only difference was lower dissolved organics (nitrates and other waste) in the water going in. however I was certain I had matched the water parameters before hand.

very odd advise from a saltwater keeper, they dont tend to do more than at most 20% changes weekly (on the most heavily stocked tanks) and usually much less (5-10% monthly is quite a common figure I've read),
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