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Results 1 to 10 of 30
  1. Default Help! High Nitrates in my tap water...


    0 Not allowed!
    First let me thank you for reading through my post. I appreciate your time and help.

    My problem is my tap water has 30 to 40 Nitrates in it. I know that 10ppm is the legal limit and my cities water
    report says the city water has 10 ppm Nitrates. But when it comes out my faucet is tests at between 30 and 40.
    I know the city pipes are probably further contaminating the water with more Nitrates, but I can't do anything about that.
    Using RO water is not an option for me and it would really mess with my PH. My tap PH is at 7.8 and the tank PH runs at 8.2.

    I use the API Master test kit. Expires in 2016.
    I shake the solutions as per instructions and test accordingly. This is what I have:
    Ammonia - 0
    Nitrite - 0
    Nitrate - 40 - 60
    PH - 8.2

    Tank: 29 gallon freshwater tank up and running since August 2012. It is cycled.
    My Nitrates stay at around 40 to 60 with weekly 8 gallon water changes. I gravel vac the tank and keep the algae cleaned
    on the glass. I also rinse the decor in the tank in the dirty tank water. I change the filter pads monthly. It is not a planted tank
    however I did put one Anubias Nana in the tank last week. It seems to be doing OK so far.

    I have 3 neon tetras, 2 cory cats, 1 male guppy, 2 platys and 2 small angel fish.

    Decor: two resin decorations and plastic plants. One live plant. One silk plant

    I have a penguin filter with bio wheel and SeaChem Matrix bio media added to the box.
    I also have a Whisper filter with a Pura Pad added to that box to try to help with the Nitrate levels.
    I have a glass top and use a Coralife lighting fixture.
    I have a 3 " bubble disc going at about 50% flow.

    PRE-FILTERING WATER: I also have a tub of water that holds about 12 gallons of water where I pre-filter the tap water
    to try to rid the tap water of the Nitrates before adding it to the tank. I also use the dechlorinator in this water.
    I have a Whisper filter (sized for a 30 gallon tank) going on this tub with a Poly Filter pad only
    in this filter to get rid of the Nitrates.

    So far pre-filtering the water for 7 days using the Poly Filter makes only a minimal difference in
    the Nitrate level. It went from about 40 to about 30. These are best guesses with trying to match
    the colors on those charts.

    I have tried running the tap water for over 20 minutes so as not to use stagnate water from the city pipes.
    I have tried letting the water sit for up to 2 days and still there is no change in the Nitrate levels in the tap water.

    I am at a loss as to what else to do to try to get these Nitrates down in the tank.
    Is there anything else I can do??
    Thanks for your time,
    Connie

  2. #2

    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Glen Arm. MD
    Posts
    2,635

    Awards Showcase

    Happy Christmas - MuckyFish thanks for advising on vegetables for my kribs! so here is a discus - ScottishFish You help a lot - PhillipOrigami For the bank account, and thx for the rep - Cliff beautiful discus! - Crispy 
    I know this doesn't help but it's all I can do! - chrisfraser05 for all the wise advice you've given me - fishmommie Congrats on 2000th post! - andreahp Merry Christmas! - fishmommie Merry Christmas - Cliff 
    Thanks for the rep :-) - ~firefly~ appreciate it. - fishmommie Thanks for the birthday wishes - mommy1 ٩(̾●̮̮̃̾•̃̾)۶ - korith For all the good advice you give. - ~firefly~ 
    Thanks for the rep the other day - Cliff thanks for the rep points.  appreciate it - fishmommie happy friday! - mojosodope Merry Christmas! - ~firefly~ Thanks for the rep! - steeler1 

    Exclamation


    0 Not allowed!
    First off - NEVER drink that water- period. Nitrates above 10 ppm are not healthy and over 40 is not safe. Use bottled water to drink and cook.

    The EPA sets the upper limit for infants as 10 ppm; I'd never use water above that level for any children at all. The EPA sets 45 ppm as the upper limit for adults.

    Next, you can't filter nitrates from your water. Letting it sit will do zero as will boiling (which will make it worse.)

    You should consider an R/O system for your own needs. As for the tank, either an R/O system or a large algae scrubber (those remove not only nitrates extremely well, but also phosphates, ammonia/nitrites and even other organics.) These units do require a light source (red is best) and can be built a number of ways but all work very well at removing nitrates.

    Under NO CIRCUMSTANCES can any human drink water processed by an algae filter - the algae is toxic to humans!
    Last edited by Cermet; 02-09-2013 at 08:09 PM.

  3. #3

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    WOW, that's pretty bad tap water quality

    Are you sure that test result is accurate ??? Have you had these test results confirmed by someone else or maybe try another test kit ? The reason why I ask is that rusty old pipe tyically do not add nitrates, mostly will just add other mineral elements
    If you take your time to do the research FIRST, you can successfully set-up and keep ANY type of aquarium with ease.
    "Not using a quarantine tank is like playing Russian roulette. Nobody wins the game, some people just get to play longer than others." - Anthony Calfo
    Fishless Cycle Cycling with Fish Marine Aquarium Info [URL="http://saltwater.aquaticcommunity.com/"]

  4. #4

    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Glen Arm. MD
    Posts
    2,635

    Awards Showcase

    Happy Christmas - MuckyFish thanks for advising on vegetables for my kribs! so here is a discus - ScottishFish You help a lot - PhillipOrigami For the bank account, and thx for the rep - Cliff beautiful discus! - Crispy 
    I know this doesn't help but it's all I can do! - chrisfraser05 for all the wise advice you've given me - fishmommie Congrats on 2000th post! - andreahp Merry Christmas! - fishmommie Merry Christmas - Cliff 
    Thanks for the rep :-) - ~firefly~ appreciate it. - fishmommie Thanks for the birthday wishes - mommy1 ٩(̾●̮̮̃̾•̃̾)۶ - korith For all the good advice you give. - ~firefly~ 
    Thanks for the rep the other day - Cliff thanks for the rep points.  appreciate it - fishmommie happy friday! - mojosodope Merry Christmas! - ~firefly~ Thanks for the rep! - steeler1 

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Nitrates are NEVER caused by piping; they are always due to waste products produced by living creatures - local farms, a specic system too close to a well, or systems that use run off. Get your water tested and DO NOT DRINK IT or use it for cooking until it is proven to be within EPA acceptible levels!!!! Even then, I'd be careful (i.e. not use) for any water with levels over 10 ppm.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    A little further from sanity
    Posts
    8,035

    Awards Showcase

    Happy Mother's Day! - Slaphppy7 For 7,000 posts!! - steeler58 Thanks for the rep!! - steeler58 For working with new fish keepers! Outstanding this month. - Taurus Just Because - Surfdog 
    A round for the fallen this Memorial Day weekend. - Compass I had no cup, so I put it on a bun... - Slaphppy7 You are amazing! So smart and giving. - SeaLady Can't give you any more rep, but well said! - steeler58 Thank again!! You seem to enjoy your coffee. - steeler58 
    Thanks for the rep!! - Compass this doesnt look like pie... not the right kind.. - Sandz for providing solid guidance to others - RiversGirl Thanks for the rep! :) - Compass cheers - Fishhook 
    Using up my winnings on my friends! - Compass No Message - Fishhook beeeeeeeer! - Sandz Bottoms up! (even though you don't drink, lol) - Slaphppy7 We miss you... - Compass 

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    I agree with Cliff, before you do anything get a second opinion on the nitrate levels from your tap. If the other source confirms the levels here are a couple links with some options for you.
    https://www.google.com/search?q=nitr...w=1600&bih=780
    https://www.google.com/search?q=nitr...w=1600&bih=780
    When I go fishing I just place a sharp rock in the water and sit there waiting for all the dead fish to float to the top... Kingfisher
    Brutal honesty will be shown on this screen.
    I think my fish is adjusting well to the four gallon, He's laying on his side attempting to go to sleep on the bottom of the gravel.
    Tolerance is a great thing to have, so is the ability to shut up.

    I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you.


  6. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Thanks to each one of you who replied. We don't drink this water or cook with it. We buy RO water at the local Water n Ice store for our water needs.
    And I buy bottled water by the case at Walmart.
    I have a call into our city officials about the Nitrate levels in the water. The water source for our city water is ground water and we are in an agricultural
    area. I suspect things are seeping into the water from fertilizers, etc.

    Where would I get a second opinion test on my tap water? I do know the API test kits are testing all the same....I am on my second test kit for Nitrate.
    And what about the fish....will they be OK living in Nitrates from 40 to 60?
    If I plant more live plants in the tank...would that help?

    I can't afford any expensive filtration system to remove the nitrates. What is an algae scrubber?
    So I wonder if I should just accept that fact that my tank will have this
    level nitrate in it.
    Thanks,
    Connie

  7. #7

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    a algae srubber is just something you grow algae on to eat the nitrates and remove them from your tank water. The below link explains how to make one

    http://algaescrubber.net/forums/show...cs-The-Summary
    If you take your time to do the research FIRST, you can successfully set-up and keep ANY type of aquarium with ease.
    "Not using a quarantine tank is like playing Russian roulette. Nobody wins the game, some people just get to play longer than others." - Anthony Calfo
    Fishless Cycle Cycling with Fish Marine Aquarium Info [URL="http://saltwater.aquaticcommunity.com/"]

  8. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    What is your stock? Also what is your filtration situation? They will be ok if you don't have too much fish. In my terrible experience, I had 9 small schooling fish (5 black neons, 4 harly's) survive in nitrate levels over 100 ppm. They are still surviving today, after I got another filter to get my nitrates below 20 ppm. Good luck!

    +1 to CLiff too
    Tanks: 30 gal community and 10 gal shrimp/community
    Journals Here

  9. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    My stock and filtration system for this tank is in my original post.
    I would like to add more small fish to my tank. I got this 29 gallon tank thinking I could have 29 inches of adult fish.
    I am rehoming my angle fish and that will leave me with 2 platys, 3 neon tetras, 2 cory cats and one guppy. I figure that is 13 inches of adult fish.
    I have recently found a few snails (ramshorn) in my tank too. Keeping up with PWCs weekly.

    Is the prefiltering the water a lost cause? I don't want to do that if I don't have to. Is more work and expense to do that. I have a friend who is an aquatics specialist who advised I do the pre-filtering to remove the Nitrates. But I am beginning to think nothing will remove them outside an expensive filtration system of one form or another. The algae scrubbers look ugly and large. I have this tank in my living room. I don't want an unsightly filter next to the tank. I really don't know anything about them...just saw a few pictures online.

    I looked into getting our tap water tested by a lab and that is costly and out of the question at this time! I have test strips too, but they are not as accurate as the API drip tests. I feel so stuck with this Nitrate problem.

    BTW, I asked the LFS what their Nitrate runs in their tanks and it runs 40. So any fish I bring home from the LFS will not be shocked by my Nitrates.

    Thanks for you ideas and help.
    Connie
    Last edited by ConnieW; 02-10-2013 at 03:03 AM.

  10. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by ConnieW View Post
    My stock and filtration system for this tank is in my original post. Wow my bad lol I would imagine the fish could get by, but that has just been IME
    I would like to add more small fish to my tank. I got this 29 gallon tank thinking I could have 29 inches of adult fish.
    I am rehoming my angle fish and that will leave me with 2 platys, 3 neon tetras, 2 cory cats and one guppy. I figure that is 13 inches of adult fish.
    I have recently found a few snails (ramshorn) in my tank too. Keeping up with PWCs weekly.

    Is the prefiltering the water a lost cause? I don't want to do that if I don't have to. Is more work and expense to do that. I have a friend who is an aquatics specialist who advised I do the pre-filtering to remove the Nitrates. But I am beginning to think nothing will remove them outside an expensive filtration system of one form or another. The algae scrubbers look ugly and large. I have this tank in my living room. I don't want an unsightly filter next to the tank. I really don't know anything about them...just saw a few pictures online.

    I looked into getting our tap water tested by a lab and that is costly and out of the question at this time! I have test strips too, but they are not as accurate as the API drip tests. I feel so stuck with this Nitrate problem.

    BTW, I asked the LFS what their Nitrate runs in their tanks and it runs 40. So any fish I bring home from the LFS will not be shocked by my Nitrates.

    Thanks for you ideas and help.
    Connie
    I saw once saw a suggestion to put plants in your HOB if you have high nitrates. I put a stick of bamboo in my aqueon quietflow, but it didn't seem to help that much. But then again, I only put that one stick of bamboo in there. So maybe more plants would make more of an impact. Good luck!
    Tanks: 30 gal community and 10 gal shrimp/community
    Journals Here

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