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Old 06-28-2012, 09:05 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Nitrates good or bad?

So I thought if I had a cycled tank that it should be 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites and less than 40 nitrates. Last time I did a water test I had 0 ammonia, 1 nitrites, and 20 nitrates. I thought that was right on except for the nitrites so I did a small water change. I was also due for my filter to be changed so i changed that too.

Now my question is that I just did a water test and change, my ammonia was 0, 1 nitrates and 20 nitrates. Now my nitrates is 0 again.

I thought I was suppose to keep nitrates? Did they dissapear because of the filter change?
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Old 06-28-2012, 09:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
Dude.... wait..... what?
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

I'm a little confused.... Nitrates don't disappear, they build up.

Has your tank been cycled? Fishless or with fish? And how long did it cycle for?

As for "time to change the filter," You really don't need to change the media. The sponges and biomax can just be rinsed in the dirty fish change water and put back into the filter. You only need to change them if they are falling apart or not keeping their shape. I haven't changed mine in over a year. The carbon needs to be changed once a month - if you use carbon. As for cleaning the filter, I clean my impeller and intake tubing once every month or two just to keep them running smoothly.

Changing the media too often or all at once, can cause the tank to go through mini cycles.
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Old 06-28-2012, 10:06 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

Well he changed out his fitler material by the sounds of it, so if it was in cycle its starting all over again. Once you removed the filter media, you also removed good bacteria. You don't need to replace it. Just rinse out in tank water in a bucket.
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Old 06-29-2012, 04:11 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

Huh....The filter box says to replace them every 3-4 weeks...so that is innacurate? Wish I would have known that before I screwed up my tank.

The tank (29 gallon) was on it's final stages of cycling, until i did that i guess.

They are carbon filters. I am using the marineland penguin 250 with bio-wheel. How do you just replace the carbon? When I look at the filter the carbon and the fliter are are pieced together. Do I take it apart to refill the carbon?
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Old 06-29-2012, 05:30 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

is the carbon on a sponge type thing? if so go get yourself some other sponge and cut to size and use that. carbon imo is totally useless unless you wana get rid of meds, bad smells etc. if the carbon is little balls or rocks then repalce with bio media.
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Old 06-29-2012, 09:44 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

Nitrates do not go away in an aquarium without water changes. The path for Nitrates is: Ammonie>Nitrites>Nitrates. In the natural world Nitrates are removed by Aquatic Plants. In an aquarium there is too much Nitrate production (over feeding, crowded fish populations, fish deaths) for plants to keep up.
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Old 06-29-2012, 10:41 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Simplestmind View Post
So I thought if I had a cycled tank that it should be 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites and less than 40 nitrates. Last time I did a water test I had 0 ammonia, 1 nitrites, and 20 nitrates. I thought that was right on except for the nitrites so I did a small water change. I was also due for my filter to be changed so i changed that too.

Now my question is that I just did a water test and change, my ammonia was 0, 1 nitrates and 20 nitrates. Now my nitrates is 0 again.

I thought I was suppose to keep nitrates? Did they dissapear because of the filter change?
sure is confusing isn't it?

First: home hobby test kits are not all the accurate or reliable.

Secondly, in any measurment/observation there will be some that are just plain wrong.

thirdly the ammonia->nitrItes->nitrate sequence is for aerobic bacteria only.

there are many things going on in our tanks other then aerobic bacteria. For instance in a planted tank with some organics (substrate, peat, drivewood) it is expected that you will get low to no ammonia, nitrItes but immediate nitrates. Then as aerobic bacteria build up the nitrates go down. usually after a few weeks.

still all on all just my.

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Old 06-29-2012, 10:44 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by NeonShark666 View Post
Nitrates do not go away in an aquarium without water changes. The path for Nitrates is: Ammonie>Nitrites>Nitrates. In the natural world Nitrates are removed by Aquatic Plants. In an aquarium there is too much Nitrate production (over feeding, crowded fish populations, fish deaths) for plants to keep up.
I repectifully disagree.

I have had many tank over the years with very heavy bioload and both fw and marine. After the initial "cycle" the should and usually did have unmeasureable nitrates. And usually phosphates as well.


my .02
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Old 06-29-2012, 03:38 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

It is confusing and I feel mildly stupid...

I even bought a 6 pack of filters so I could change them every month, guess I won't be needing those for awhile.
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Old 06-29-2012, 04:05 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by beaslbob View Post
I repectifully disagree.

I have had many tank over the years with very heavy bioload and both fw and marine. After the initial "cycle" the should and usually did have unmeasureable nitrates. And usually phosphates as well.


my .02
I respectfully disagree with your use of "should". A planted tank should NOT have zero nitrates. Otherwise, plant health is potentially compromised. It can get there, sure. But, your plants will show it.
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Old 06-29-2012, 04:25 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Simplestmind View Post
It is confusing and I feel mildly stupid...

I even bought a 6 pack of filters so I could change them every month, guess I won't be needing those for awhile.

yep it is confusing.

But you shouldn't feel even mildly stupid.

Aquariums like everything else in the world are very complex and not fully understood systems. Even people who have studied aquariums, have PHDs, and in controlled scientific conditions will readily admit they don't know everything.

sound to me like you were just a little ignorant like all those more experienced people. but not stupid in any way.

As to the filters sorry but I can't help. I just let the plants filter my tanks.


But that's just me and my.




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Old 06-29-2012, 05:49 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

And what experienced people are you calling ignorant? I haven't seen any of those here. If your calling people here that, be prepared for arguements that will have a bad ending.
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Old 06-29-2012, 06:30 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

*stumbles in and throws whiskey bottle down*

Who'r yuu calln inorgant????


Seriously though I wish I could get 0 nitrates.

Simplestmind, just a heads up, once you're through with your filters, a buddy gave me a heads up that you can go to Wal-mart and get "poly-fill" for pillows, and use that. It's only about $8 for a bag that will last you a year or better. - Nereus
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Old 06-29-2012, 06:46 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

Ohh yea an not olly yat *points finger purposfully, but not at anyone directly*




Ig·no·rant
   [ig-ner-uhnt]
adjective
1.
lacking in knowledge or training; unlearned: an ignorant man.

2.
lacking knowledge or information as to a particular subject or fact: ignorant of quantum physics.

3.
uninformed; unaware.

4.
due to or showing lack of knowledge or training: an ignorant


...that's propper usage of the word ignorant, used without disrespect. I'd hate to be subject to a scientist, or worse a doctor, that denies said term.

*passes out*
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Old 06-29-2012, 07:10 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

*stirr's awake* I was onilaly holding the tail...!! dude wait, what? ...oh

Hey holly12, couldn't help but notice the home-made C02 bottles inbetween your planted tanks. Being that they're looking as good as they do, what's your recipe for your mixture/schedule/etc. Looks like you're doing a good job on them - Nereus
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Old 06-29-2012, 08:54 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

Ignorant.... If he only knew....
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Old 06-29-2012, 09:42 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

What do you mean?
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Old 06-29-2012, 10:26 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

Its like the pot is calling the kettle black
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Old 06-29-2012, 10:29 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by beaslbob View Post
yep it is confusing.

But you shouldn't feel even mildly stupid.

Aquariums like everything else in the world are very complex and not fully understood systems. Even people who have studied aquariums, have PHDs, and in controlled scientific conditions will readily admit they don't know everything.

sound to me like you were just a little ignorant like all those more experienced people. but not stupid in any way.

As to the filters sorry but I can't help. I just let the plants filter my tanks.


But that's just me and my.




.02
I dont respectively disagree with you..i completely disagree with you..i am experienced so are you calling me ignorant?? if so i will call you out on it..i have never ever seen one of your tanks..not really sure i want to and i definitely wouldnt want to see your saltwaterautolinker.com autolinking image tank..from now on use your words carefully..I for one are really getting tired of your nonsense..

To the orginal poster..let your tank cycle the rest of the way..rinse your filters in old tank water in a bucket..achieve a 0 ammonia..0 nitrites..and shoot for around 20 nitrates if you have a planted tank..by the time you do your next water change your nitrates should go up

Rick
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Old 06-29-2012, 10:47 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Default Re: Nitrates good or bad?

Personal threats? Really? The dude is asking about nitrates.. ideally you would wany anything under 40 ppm, if you had 20ppm your golden, but it sounds like you have to start over which sucks but just do what you did last time and you should be alright.

Edit- unless you built your tank exactly like bobs then personally I wouldn't even pay attention to his advice as most of it won't work in the majority of our tanks.
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