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Just some guy, you know?
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Discussion Starter #1
My tank has always had 5-10 Nitrate, I just got a new kit and it reads 25!!!

I have no idea why I have nitrate, I have a MRC MR-2 running wet on a PCX 55, I do my water changes, and I siphon my deatris. I have 75X turnover that keeps most everything of the bottom of the tank, and the skimmer pulls out my particulates.

Phosphate is undetectable, and I don't have any algae (thank goodness) but I have been unable to beat the nitrate thing. Corals look happy so do the fish.

I have about 50 LBS of live rock, in my 50 gallon tank, I also have a 40W UV running all the time. I wonder if the starboard most people use provides an anaerobic area for denitrifaction underneath?

How do I plan to solve this? Well for lack of better ideas,... I am going to stop testing!!! :eek:

Whiskey
 

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How long between the 5-10 result on the old kit and the 25 on the new kit? The variable here is the kit. I caught myself once looking through the side of the test vial on a Salifert kit, and forgot to divide by 10. I was reading 7 as 70. No saying you would do that.............:)
 

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Just some guy, you know?
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Discussion Starter #6
No, no nothing like that, not this time anyway. My old kit was far expired, and I am thinking it was reading wrong, both are salifert. The tube viewed from the side was definitely a solid 100 (10) viewed from the top it was definitely 25.

There was an 8 day difference between the 2 readings, but I am not thinking the nitrate went up, I am thinking the old kit was not reading right.

I don't know why, I have been trying to get it down forever, and I was (still am) constantly frustrated about other people being able to do it with sub-par equipment and no effort, while I am having so much trouble.

I wonder if I have driven phosphate way down, and now I can't denitrify?

So I just decided to give up, for the sake of my sanity.

Thanks,
Whiskey
 

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Just some guy, you know?
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Discussion Starter #7
Geoff said:
sorry, just glad to see you are finally giving up looking at Nitrates. :D

G~
Oh, right on. I know the corals don't really care about nitrate (but it is really hard to get years of misinformation out of my head), but with phospate being so hard to test for I have always tested nitrate to keep tabs on how my tank is doing. Perhaps I should test neither and just look for algae?

You know, speaking about misinformation, from what I understand NitrIte has no ill effect on fish in SW. This blew my mind as much as the corals not caring about nitrate thing.

Whiskey
 

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Is there somebody local who you cna borrow a kit from to verify your result? But like you are saying if the tank looks good don't stress on it!
 

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Wiskey said:
I wonder if I have driven phosphate way down, and now I can't denitrify?
You'd have to get extremely low phosphate levels to short-circuit denitrification.

I've included a link to a study on denitification of groundwater where, in the absence of sufficient phosphate, nitrate was converted back up to nitrite.

"Only when a 0.16 mg/L phosphate-P supplement was added to the groundwater was there a loss of nitrate without a large accumulation of nitrite."

http://www.ars.usda.gov/research/publications/Publications.htm?seq_no_115=128096
 

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Just some guy, you know?
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Discussion Starter #12
REEF-DADDY said:
Is there somebody local who you cna borrow a kit from to verify your result? But like you are saying if the tank looks good don't stress on it!
I will do that when the opertuntity presents itself, but for now I am going to ignore it. :cool:

Whiskey
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Loverotties said:
Are you using RO/DI water and top off?You could stand some more LR.
I use RO/DI, TDS=0 and if I add more live rock the flow wouldn't be able to get around the rocks as much and more nutreants would build up in the rock.

FWIW, my waterchange water tests 0 for nitrate.

Thanks,
Whiskey
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Weatherman said:
You'd have to get extremely low phosphate levels to short-circuit denitrification.

I've included a link to a study on denitification of groundwater where, in the absence of sufficient phosphate, nitrate was converted back up to nitrite.

"Only when a 0.16 mg/L phosphate-P supplement was added to the groundwater was there a loss of nitrate without a large accumulation of nitrite."

http://www.ars.usda.gov/research/publications/Publications.htm?seq_no_115=128096
Hmm, but is that total phospate, or available phospate? If this really was going on my tank would have an excess of nitrIte, I doubt that is the case though.

Thanks for the article,
Whiskey
 

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I would take some water to your local FS and get a reading just for fun, then go to a friends with your test kit and do a test of his water.

Im not familiar with your tank but you have some cleaner shrimp and fancy stars or something similar to find the nasties that hide under the rock I assume?

Maybe its something your dumping in the water causing the test reading? I run Marc Weiss products and they cause a false no3 reading on some test kits. Maybe testing your water before dumping in the tank?? Just thinking out loud ... hope you fix it ...

If everything is happy I wouldn't worry to much but it would bother me too.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Nyles said:
I would take some water to your local FS and get a reading just for fun, then go to a friends with your test kit and do a test of his water.

Im not familiar with your tank but you have some cleaner shrimp and fancy stars or something similar to find the nasties that hide under the rock I assume?

Maybe its something your dumping in the water causing the test reading? I run Marc Weiss products and they cause a false no3 reading on some test kits. Maybe testing your water before dumping in the tank?? Just thinking out loud ... hope you fix it ...

If everything is happy I wouldn't worry to much but it would bother me too.
The rocks are on little stands, up off the bottom glass, I do have a cleaner shrimp, he is buisy trying to steal food from LPS, but the army of snails does a good job.

Marc Weiss products eh? From what I understand those are just sugar water,... Does sugar effect NO3 readings?, if so we may have a reason,...

Thanks for the ideas, even though it sounds stupid, the reading bothers me too.
Whiskey
 

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If the skimmer is pulling and the flow is flowing with no build up on the bottom, Id leave it alone as long as all critters are happy! I test salinity and PH when I do water changes. Thats it.
i dont think more is the answer neccisarily either. But thats me. Whats your bio-load?

Robert
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I raised my bio-load due to coral bleaching issues, the coral is not bleaching anymore.

I have:
YT (3 inches or so)
Christmass wrasse (2.5 inch)
Chrub Angel (1.5 inch or so)
False Perc (1.5 inch)
Sprinngeri Dottyback (1 inch)

Thanks,
Whiskey
 

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c.a.g. owner and operator
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i know how you feel whiskey ! i go thru this "i must be doing something wrong " feeling everytime i test for nitrates . i think some things are so implanted in our minds its hard to let go . i had an undetectable reading for the last six months and now it reads 5p.p.m. . i just cringe when i grab that test kit !! don't worry we"ll get thru this 'together ' , right after i pull out about 5 more fish !
 
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