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High nitrates

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aceofspadeskb View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote aceofspadeskb Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 03 2015 at 10:51am
FWIW, I was recently battling high nitrates around 30 ppm.  For months I tried about everything I could think of...more macro algae, decreased feeding, more cleanup crew, increased flow, wet skimming, more frequent water changes, etc.  In the end, I bought new filter socks(the ones I was using were about 18 months old and had been washed several times).  2 weeks after using the new batch of socks(and changing them nightly) my nitrates are zero.

Edited by aceofspadeskb - June 03 2015 at 10:52am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote relethg Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 03 2015 at 11:21am

Originally posted by aceofspadeskb aceofspadeskb wrote:

FWIW, I was recently battling high nitrates around 30 ppm.  For months I tried about everything I could think of...more macro algae, decreased feeding, more cleanup crew, increased flow, wet skimming, more frequent water changes, etc.  In the end, I bought new filter socks(the ones I was using were about 18 months old and had been washed several times).  2 weeks after using the new batch of socks(and changing them nightly) my nitrates are zero.


That is interesting. Did you wash in bleach?

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aceofspadeskb View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote aceofspadeskb Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 03 2015 at 11:48am
No.  I have always just washed them in hot water and they come out just fine.  When to replace filter socks is a gray area.  I've heard people swear that they need to be replaced after 4 or 5 uses.  These ones were probably pushing 100 uses.  I think the material had just worn thin from that many washes and was no longer anywhere near the original 200 micron rating.

That said, the new filter socks weren't what actually got the nitrates to zero.  It was a combination of new filter socks and everything else I mentioned I had tried months earlier.


Edited by aceofspadeskb - June 03 2015 at 11:50am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 04 2015 at 5:37am
 
Originally posted by slicks56 slicks56 wrote:

What is the best way to control high nitrates. We just spent an hour checking all parameters, nitrates was the only one out of range. We run a skimmer in the sump, a phosphate reactor and carbon. HELP!!!
Thanks for later sharing that the Nitrate level was found to be 40 ppm. It's difficult to address the issue without knowing that fact. In fact, 40 ppm is not that bad. Some very nice looking reef tanks operate just fine at higher levels, though I too would try to bring it down to under 20 ppm. The coral will tell you by their behavior if pollution levels are low enough for them to be happy. 
Smile

In my opinion, based on too many years of experienceWink, the "best" way to "control" polluting Nitrogen compounds is to look at 2 basic things:

1. Feed only as much as needed (try this: cut the feeding by 1/2 and watch the pollution fall to near zero Smile) and feed the kinds of food that the animals can properly digest and gain the proper nutrients. Dry processed(baked) pellet and flake foods are typically less nutritious and more polluting than macroalgae/seaweed. frozen meaty foods(mysis shrimp, brine shrimp, copepods, etc.), green leafy lettuce, Nori, etc. This is my opinion. The subject of fish food is always debatable. 

2. Grow the biofiltration in the tank to properly and efficiently process the waste. As aceofspadeskb mentioned, the biofiltration encompasses substantial healthy LS, LR and Algae growth. In fact, the biofiltration can be as much as 100% of the total filtration of a reef aquarium. Though the use of an effective skimmer and other media reduce that figure to around 85%. Over the years I found that growing a better, more complete biofiltration is the major key and yet least understood principle for keeping nutrients low enough for coral, fish and other inverts to be healthy and thriving.

Hope this helps.
Aloha.
Mark 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BobC63 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 04 2015 at 10:45am
How much live rock do you have in the tank?
 
Too little for the bioload can be a factor in high nitrates
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote slicks56 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 07 2015 at 1:45pm
We have a lot of live rock in the tank, approximately 60 to 80 lbs.
our nitrates have come down to between 10 and 20 with many water changes,and no more flake food. We are going to try some de*nitrate today, as soon as we figure out how to use it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AcroNem Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 07 2015 at 2:58pm
Most of those products will "remove" nitrate but that's usually only by a means of detoxifying it. Between 10-20 should continue to drop as you start a good water change schedule and remove any crap that's coming in with what you're feeding. My nutrient levels (Phosphate especially) start to creep up if I don't rinse frozen food first, or if I feed any pellet food (for corals) for any extended period. It seems like you have a handle on things I apologize for the long post I hope things continue to improve. Keep us updated!

Edited by AcroNem - June 07 2015 at 2:58pm
150G mixed reef, growing coral farm.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote slicks56 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 07 2015 at 3:15pm
Thank you, we're trying. The corals are already looking better than they have for a very long time.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote slicks56 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 07 2015 at 3:17pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Reefer4Ever Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 07 2015 at 3:24pm
This looks fantastic. Great job and for sure keep us posted. Be consistent and get all parameters stable. Good luck and we are here if you need us.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AcroNem Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 07 2015 at 3:41pm
Way jealous of your hammer. I think that's the only color I don't have! Seconded on the consistency and stability part as well.
150G mixed reef, growing coral farm.
Thirteenth year keeping reefs, always here to talk fish.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote slicks56 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 07 2015 at 4:40pm
If I get them growing again, you can definitely have a frag.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote slicks56 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 09 2015 at 6:43pm
Success!!! 2 different tests confirm that our nitrates are between 5 and 10! Thank you everyone for your suggestions and help! I am so glad we joined!!!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Reefer4Ever Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 09 2015 at 7:00pm
Congrats now the hard part keeping everything right where it's at.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote slicks56 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 09 2015 at 7:25pm
No kidding there!
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