freshwater tank nitrires are off the chart

6 posts

Member introductions and random (non-aquarist) topics.

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Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2008 6:48 pm

freshwater tank nitrires are off the chart

by wickedkristina

I have a 60 gal. freshwater tank. My nitrites are off the chart. Do i do a complete water change, or 50% or 25%?????? Everyone tells me something different. I got new filters and a powerhead. These are what people tell me i should do, buy some bacteria, water changes- complete, 50%, 25% 30%. Ive had my tank about 4-5 months, it has always been cloudy except for a few days. My tank is a hexagon i think 6 sided. So help what should i do?????????????? wickedkristina

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Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2007 3:04 am

by Peterkarig3210

How about your ammonia? If it's measurable it's high too. Yea, do a 50% water change if the nitrites, not nitrates, is really high, and do 30% changes every day till nitrites and ammonia get to zero. With a properly cycling tank where the beneficial bacteria are converting ammonia to nitrites, and then nitrites to nitrates, you should only have a low level of nitrates. Nitrates is the end product and if you don't have live plants to use that as fertiliser it will gradually increase over time. Nitrates are not that toxic to fish unless it gets really high. That is the main reason to do regular 30% water changes say every 2 weeks or so, to remove excess nitrates. If ammonia or nitrites are measurable it means that there is either none or not enough bacteria to process the waste either because you never got a population of the right bacteria growing, you feed your fish too much, or you have too many fish in the tank. Filters will both remove particulate waste and provide surface area for beneficial bacteria to grow.
How many fish do you have of what type? If we know that we may be able to determine if you have too many fish for your tank size, and tell us what kind of filter you have and how it's rated in terms of how big of a tank it's supposed to filter. Right now you need to do daily water changes of at least 30% and maybe 50% today so the level of toxic waste products can get to a level the bacteria can handle. Always use a dechlorinating water conditioner when adding tap water too. You can buy live bacteria and this can help, but many of us have come to the conclusion that only the refrigerated type of bacteria you can buy is any good.

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Joined: Thu Jan 17, 2008 6:03 pm

by Mattallica874353

When I first got into aquariums, I didn't cycle properly and I had this same nitrate problem.
I did a 40% water change EVERY day for about 2 weeks, until I got it under control, just like PeterKraig said... this is probably the quickest and most feasible way to fix the problem.

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Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2008 8:37 am

by spongebob4460

and for now... feed your fish sparingly (and i mean sparingly) no more than once a day if that... i personally would go every other day, until your nitrites are zero. test ure nitrates and tell us the results. Peter hit every point... and every bit of info u give us will help. what size filters do u have

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Joined: Wed Dec 19, 2007 2:22 am

by saltwaterpimp

a good man once told me the only soulution to polution is dilution..

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Joined: Thu Aug 30, 2007 8:59 pm

by dick_headers


freshwater tank nitrires are off the chart

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