High Nitrates :(

HCO

New member
Hi, last time I tested my Nitrates which was a long time ago, I used to keep them at 0... (even tho I had some hair algae)
A few months ago I started to get hair algae and cyanide no matter what I did, but never checked my Nitrates or phosphates.
I was tired of my tank looking so ugly :mad2: So last friday I went to my LFS to buy some biopellets, I showed the guy a few pictures of my tank but he said the problem was that I didn't have enough LR and that LR is suppose to be my natural filtration, he suggest me to start by adding 16lbs of LR.. and then to get 16 more.

I came home and changed the 10% of my water and now my water looks crystal clear like it never did before ;) So today I decided to check my parameters and I was surprised to see my Nitrates were between 20 and 40 (It's not a dark red and it's not a dark orange :hmm6: It's in between) and my phosphates were at 0.03 tested with my Hanna Phosphate checker.

I only have 3 fish. The hair algae seems to be dying but I still have some cyanide in my old LR and base rock... I'm I having high nitrates because I just introduced LR to my tank? Do I need more LR? Thanks in advance! :D
 

ReeferBill

New member
High Nitrates?

High Nitrates?

It depends on the size of your tank. If the rock is very pourous then you should shoot for atleast 1# OF LIVEROCK PER GALLON OF WATER OR BETTER YET TO TRY FOR 1.5 # PER GALLON OF WATER. HAPPY REEFING!!!:hammer:
 

HCO

New member
This is my tank, from the picture it does look like it needs more LR... :D but when I see the tank in my bedroom it looks fine lol.. I'm thinking I need more LR :eek1: But I want to keep a minimalistic open look.

SAM_0077.jpg
 

jimmy frag

New member
hi nitrates

hi nitrates

we can only guess here as you have given vary little info. Im going to guess your tank has not been up and running over 6 months and your nitrates have slowly been creeping up on you. doing a 9 gallon water change on 30ppm nitrates is only droping your nitrates 3ppm. how clear your water looks is not going to tell you anything.
 

HCO

New member
Well I had this tank maybe for 2 years or more.. but since the person who did my previous installation didn't do a good job,I had to call another company so I restarted my entire tank like a year ago. But since I'm a college student I've been doing things slowly and I never had nitrates so high.. I don't know if it's because of the LR I recently added or what.. but if you guys need any extra information about my tank just let me know. I'm afraid of adding a CUC or any other fish to my tank with these parameters :rolleye1: Thanks!
 

HanoverFist

New member
Anything dead on the new rock will decay, be processed by bacteria and end up as nitrates. So yes it can/will cause a nitrate spike. Also a risk of an ammonia spike if your system can't adapt fast enough. Which is why he suggested adding 16 lbs at a time.


Large water changes over time will get your nitrates down. Regular water changes will keep them there. Eventually the rocks will mature and help keep them in check too.
 

steelhead77

New member
If this is a current pic, you have no corals and only two lonely fish. While 0 nitrates is desirable, nitrates of 20-40 is not bad and in no way detrimental to your tank at this time. While the minimalist look is a personal preference, LR is the main source of filtration and required for a healthy reef tank. At this time, don't sweat it, a lot of folks would kill to have nitrates at 20-40.
 

bertoni

Premium Member
I don't know how much food is going into the system, but it might be reasonable to reduce the quantity. I agree that more live rock, over time, likely would reduce the nitrate level, but the animals should be fine as is. Plus, nitrate kits are notoriously inaccurate.
 
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