High Nitrate in tap? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 20 Old 02-08-2013, 01:13 PM Thread Starter
High Nitrate in tap?

Hi everyone, ok so As some of you know i had a BGA out break, and i clean the BGA out of the tank the best i could. and also readjusted my Spray bar for better flow. I also ended up having a Nitrite Spike. It was pretty high. It is .25 ppm now. No where near the 2. ppm. I think the Nitrite Spike was due to me cleaning the BGA. It was bad in my tank.

So here is my Situation. My tank is 0 on Ammonia, .25 on Nitrite due to the recent spike. and 20.ppm Nitrate.

Now i tested my tap And My Nitrate is 30-40 ppm, 0 Nitrite, .10 on Ammonia. Hardly readable on the chart.

After Cleaning the plants and all from the BGA, it is growing back. But I am in the midst of working on it and trying to rid it. I have a thread already on that Situation.

My question here is How to Lower the Nitrate in my tap before a water change. I do use prime. but that is only a 24-48 hour Detox. I Do have plants in my tank and I'm always buying more. It will be a heavy planted tank. (eventually).

Any solution to the Nitrate in the tap? In the tank it is fine. it's lower in the tank than the tap. But talking to Byron, he seem to think the reason i have the BGA is due to my High Nitrate in my tap.

If anyone has high Nitrate in tap how do you lower it?
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post #2 of 20 Old 02-08-2013, 02:15 PM
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I have the same problem and was given really good advice about it in my thread a couple of days ago; it's on page 3 now 'newbie advice/comments appreciated'. The advice there is better that what I can say, but basically from what I was told there are things you can do in the tank (plants, nitrate removing filter medias) and methods of removing the nitrates before you put the water in the tank. I'm about to try a product called Aquaworld Nitrate remover Aquaworld AQUAWORLD NITRATE REMOVER I'll review it when I've tried it, hopefully tomorrow. If it works as well as the reviews say it'll be great as it's very cheap.

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post #3 of 20 Old 02-08-2013, 02:44 PM Thread Starter
Yeah i just got done reading your post and all the comments. Sounds like something i need to do.
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post #4 of 20 Old 02-08-2013, 02:46 PM Thread Starter
Oh and you will love Peppered cory's I have them and I love them. I thought at frist i wouldn't but Man I feel in love with them. i got one He like a runt. Small fins and tail. But loves to play. they are def a good choice...
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post #5 of 20 Old 02-08-2013, 04:24 PM
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Originally Posted by FuelingFire View Post
Oh and you will love Peppered cory's I have them and I love them. I thought at frist i wouldn't but Man I feel in love with them. i got one He like a runt. Small fins and tail. But loves to play. they are def a good choice...
Unfortunately I'm not going to be able to get peppered cory's as my water is a bit too hard, but I'm going to get bronze cory's instead, albino variety I think.
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post #6 of 20 Old 02-08-2013, 04:32 PM Thread Starter
Well you will love them. my water is Medium hard. and they do just fine. i also have black Kuhli loaches and they are a blast as well. But you will love the Cory's
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post #7 of 20 Old 02-08-2013, 04:37 PM
You don't need to worry about nitrate. 20PPM in the tank and 30-40ppm in the tap is nothing to be concerned of and is no harm to fish. In high tech planted tanks we actually increase nitrate usually to at least 20ppm just for the plants. My fish have always been healthy and breeding at those levels and higher.

Best fool proof way to decrease nitrate when tap water is an issue is with live plants, I would not recommend anything else. They must be fast growing plants tho. Java fern, anubias and other similar plants will not have any noticeable effect.

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post #8 of 20 Old 02-08-2013, 04:51 PM Thread Starter
Yeah i have live plants. and it keeps it lower then my tap. But i have a Blue green algae problem and the High nitrates is what it actually feeds off of. so that is my problem. The higher the Nitrate the chances of BGA. I research it and a lot of fact point to the high Nitrates to contribute to the Blue green algae. that's why i wanted to lower my Nitrate in my tap.
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post #9 of 20 Old 02-08-2013, 06:58 PM
The notion or advice that high nitrates is okay is just plain wrong - I've seen too many fry die from high nitrates before my own realization of very high (60+ppm) nitrates in my well water.
High nitrates are not tolerated by some species and have long term negative health affects on most fish.
The nitrates in fresh water in nature (with the exception of man made pollution in agricultural areas) is nearly not measurable. This is especially true in the almost pure rain water of the Amazon river.

In my response in this thread, I touch on many ways to remove nitrates from the source water as well as keeping tank nitrates low:


Alternatively, you could find another source for water for minimal water changes. Perhaps a relative or friend not far away has better water. You might purchase bottled water (here about $.88/gal). My tap water filter delivers deionized (DI) water, at about $.50/gal, but the cartridge life varies with the source water quality).

Let me know if I can help further. Keep us posted!

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Last edited by AbbeysDad; 02-08-2013 at 07:12 PM.
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post #10 of 20 Old 02-08-2013, 09:55 PM
I've never had issues with raising fry due to nitrates and also never a blue green algae / cyanobacteria issue. I don't keep any livebearers due to the issue their population is too hard to control. I've had rainbowfish, tetras, angelfish, blue rams, and sparkling gouramis all spawn in water with over 20ppm of nitrate. I usually don't attempt to raise fry since they are in community tanks, but I have with the rainbows and sometimes an occasional tetra fry survives on its own.

Far as algae goes. No single thing causes algae and that includes nitrate. I have had more algae issues in tanks with low nitrate then with high nitrate. I currently need to order some more potassium nitrate fertilizer because one of my tanks has been having a stubborn algae problem that I'm fairly certain is due to low nitrogen levels. In the end algae is caused by an imbalance. You could view that as one nutrient (in this case nitrate) as being two low or high. Or you can view it as other nutrients also being two low or high. I can tell you absolutely that 30-40ppm nitrate in the tap is not the exact cause of an algae problem. Reducing it may fix the issue but correlation doesn't prove causation. Increasing other nutrients to boost plant growth could also fix the issue. In the end it is all about balance between light and nutrients in the water. The one trick thing about blue green algae is it is actually a type of photosynthetic bacteria which makes it much more stubborn to remove. I run most all my tanks at 20ppm of nitrate since that is suggested for higher demand planted tanks and I've yet to experience any blue green algae problems. I've only ever really had algae issues do to one or another nutrients being low and more often then not its nitrate.

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