water company put nitrates in my water!!! - Page 3 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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post #21 of 24 Old 02-28-2009, 08:24 AM Thread Starter
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I think I am going to call them on Monday and ask about a home test.
They did not offer, he just kept telling me the water was good.
I am thinking he did not offer a home test because he was affraid of discovering that there is a problem.
I told him that I had also took water to the store to be tested, his answer was our test are not as precise as theirs.

Thanks for wishing me luck, I think I am going to need it!
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post #22 of 24 Old 02-28-2009, 09:16 AM
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A reading of 40 for nitrates is not a worry for most any fish you are likely to keep. We use numbers like 20 ppm or 40 ppm of nitrates to judge how much the water has deteriorated because of ammonia conversion. That gives us an idea of how much other, harder to measure, chemicals have built up. The nitrates themselves have been repeatedly been shown to be safe for most fish at well over 100 ppm. There are some very sensitive fish where that is not the case but in general they will be fine. I know that my local water authorities publish warnings every year when the levels in the drinking water exceed some threshold that is considered unsafe for young babies. It happens with water supplies that come from surface sources like lakes and rivers instead of from deep wells. Those water supplies end up contaminated with nitrates being used by farmers as fertilizers. The rain washes some of the fertilizer into creeks and streams and they end up in the water supply.
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post #23 of 24 Old 03-08-2009, 10:34 AM
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I know this thread is a little old, but I came across an article the other day that might help explain the discrepancy. It said the nitrate tests we use actually measure all forms of nitrogen in the water as nitrate. I knew nitrite was shown as nitrate, nitrite levels are usually low enough not to have any real effect on the readings. But apparently there are other forms of nitrogen that can be in the water also and arent toxic, but show as nitrate on our tests. The article didnt say, but I wouldnt be surprised if these forms end up becoming nitrate in our tanks, in which case our tests are fine for what we use them for. But the water co is using a much (much much) more expensive test that only shows actual nitrate.
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post #24 of 24 Old 03-08-2009, 01:27 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Syrinx!
I got tired of playing phone tag with the water company and decided to give it up.
I kind of figured that even if they came in to do a home water test and descovered I do have nitrates in my tap, it would still be a long ongoing problem.
I ordered some plant for nitrate removal, also ordered a countertop nitrate removing filter with a 1 gal per min. flow rate. I will use it for my drinking water and for my smaller tanks.
All of my fish are still nice and health even though I am getting reading somewhere between 40-80ppm.
The Pura NitrateLock and Algone have not made any notable improvements.
The tap water fluctuates from 10ppm to 40ppm. Makes me wonder if the problem is from a crack in the water line somewhere.
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