Help! Water Change Query... *updated*

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andiuk

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Hey guys, how is everyone?

Just a question, coz I'm stumped...

I did a standered (30%) water change the other evening as the nitrates had peaked, everything was as is normal, anyways, I did all of my normal routine, but when I tested the water again today - the nitrate wasn't much lower than when I changed it!

I checked and all the other parameters are the same - zero nitrate etc etc... I definately dechlorinated the water, I've not added any new fish - but I'm really stumped! Any ideas!?

I vaccumed the gravel again to pick up any excess debris, but dunno what to do now really!

The fish all seem fine, but I just dunno why the Nitrate hasn't gone down... or can that sometimes take a few days and I've just never noticed before!?

Andy
 

Luniyn

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Re: Help! Water Change Query...

If you have an excessive peak in nitrate then one water change sometimes won't do the trick. You will need to do a few to really start seeing a good decline. I would do 20% changes for the next few days until it gets under control. Then start to space them out more until you get back to your regular schedule, though you might want to up it a bit so this build up doesn't occur again.
 
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andiuk

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Re: Help! Water Change Query...

Luniyn said:
If you have an excessive peak in nitrate then one water change sometimes won't do the trick. You will need to do a few to really start seeing a good decline. I would do 20% changes for the next few days until it gets under control. Then start to space them out more until you get back to your regular schedule, though you might want to up it a bit so this build up doesn't occur again.
cheers me dear!

like i said - im not doing anything (that im aware of) any differently... but i'll do the water changes and hope that helps! thanks!
 

Jimold

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Re: Help! Water Change Query...

I would also get some "Prime". It does a great job detoxing nitrites so it doesn't hurt your fish until you get a handle on it
 
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andiuk

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Okay guys!

Help.... I've been doing partial water changes every single day now, but for some reason the Nitrates are just not reducing afterwards... why!?

Help!

Andy
 
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andiuk

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okay guys - someone please figure out what the **** is going on, coz i'm really, really stumped!

i just did another big water change this time (50%) to try and lower the nitrates, and the test results are exactly the same after the change as they were before!
 

simpleton

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What are your Nitrate readings? And what type of test kit do you have? It may or may not make a difference but if you're looking for accuracy on your reading levels, I've found the test strips aren't that accurate at all. You should look inot a Master test kit if you don't already have one. I'd slo continue with the water changes.
 

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Are you testing the water immediately after the change, or waiting a while? If you are testing immediately, you may be getting false readings...try waiting a few hours.
 
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sgould said:
Are you testing the water immediately after the change, or waiting a while?  If you are testing immediately, you may be getting false readings...try waiting a few hours.
hey guys... well... okay, yes, i do use test strips, but thats soley becuase ive found them to be cheaper, and about as accurate as the test tube version i used before!

also - i've tested the water right after, and seen no change, and left it until the following day and also seen no change! so im totally clueless!

any help would be appreciated... my fish are fine for now, but i dont wanna loose any of the little guys coz of something thats messed up!
 

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Do the test strips show a nitrate level of "stress"? What are the levels according to the strip. I occaisionally use strips for a quick reading. I mean, are we talking about levels of 80+?
 
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simpleton said:
Do the test strips show a nitrate level of "stress"?  What are the levels according to the strip.   I occaisionally use strips for a quick reading.  I mean, are we talking about levels of 80+?
after 4 water changes the levels have gone from 100+ to around about 70-100 - so, yes, stress - although the fish do all seem perfectly fine!

I just don't get it! I've done nothing different! As far as I know there hasn't been any problems with our towns water supply or anything like that, so I'm totally clueless!
 
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andiuk

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anybody got any other ideas coz the water changes are still not making any difference!
 

sgould

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Water changes are the only way to control nitrate, so you are doing the right thing. Several different sizes of water changes were mentioned in the thread, so I am not sure where you are now, but I would do 50% water changes every day, religiously. You mentioned that your tests had gone from 100+ down to the 70-100 range, so it is working, it is just slow.

How big is this tank, and what fish are in it?
 

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I don't know what happened to several of my posts I made last night but I replied to this post a second time last night. In any event, the water changes will work. If you want to try doing a double water change you might see some better results. Do a 25% water change, run your filter for a few minutes to churn things up and then immediately do another 25% water change. Try this for the next few days and you should really see some results. Nitrates are the hardest to get rid of effectively and water changes are the best way to do that. However, if you want to try some chemicals, some people on here have had some good results using . One member had 25ppm nitrate right out of his tap, and using this he was able to get it down to around 7 just in the first few days. So it's worth a shot. If you have live plants then it will work great, if you do not then you will need aeration because this actually produces CO2.
 
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andiuk

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Luniyn said:
I don't know what happened to several of my posts I made last night but I replied to this post a second time last night. In any event, the water changes will work. If you want to try doing a double water change you might see some better results. Do a 25% water change, run your filter for a few minutes to churn things up and then immediately do another 25% water change. Try this for the next few days and you should really see some results. Nitrates are the hardest to get rid of effectively and water changes are the best way to do that. However, if you want to try some chemicals, some people on here have had some good results using . One member had 25ppm nitrate right out of his tap, and using this he was able to get it down to around 7 just in the first few days. So it's worth a shot. If you have live plants then it will work great, if you do not then you will need aeration because this actually produces CO2.
hey! yeah, i did see your post the other night - i even replied, and thought maybe id dreamt it when i woke up and it'd gone this morning! ****!

well, GOOD NEWS GUYS (well, for me anyways, you lot probably aren't interested), but -

I went to my pet store and bought some of the Easy Balance stuff (well, their equivilant), I also added 3 new small plants, I also did a 30% water change.

The nitrates overnight have gone from 100+ to approx 70, which is good, they're definately comin' down and I'll keep attacking 'til they're all gone! So thanks for all the help everyone!

Like I said thou, no idea why this all happened coz I'd done nothing different to usual! Oh well!
 

Luniyn

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Hey they are coming down that's all that matters. That's good news. Will take a bit of elbow grease but it will be worth it. Hey if it wasn't for maintenance of the tank and wanting to keep it in the best of condition, I might get bored and find something else to do ;D.
 
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okay, well, - now some bad news... it'd appear that the nitrates are again on their way back up!!! i have no idea why, coz the tap water is still testing fairly low!

i've now done 30% water changes for about 9 days in a row, and nothing has changed! im just clueless as to why!
 

Luniyn

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Do any of the pet stores around you use liquid test kits to do the in house tests? Not that I'm saying you are doing anything wrong, but I'm wondering just how accurate your test strips really are. It doesn't sound right that with 30% water changes every day for 9 days, that you would actually have rising nitrates. It's certainly not impossible, but unless you've substantially increased the bio-load during this process there isn't a reason why it should.
 
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Luniyn said:
Do any of the pet stores around you use liquid test kits to do the in house tests? Not that I'm saying you are doing anything wrong, but I'm wondering just how accurate your test strips really are. It doesn't sound right that with 30% water changes every day for 9 days, that you would actually have rising nitrates. It's certainly not impossible, but unless you've substantially increased the bio-load during this process there isn't a reason why it should.
I haven't done anything! Thou I am getting worried, coz one of my mollies just died!
 

Luniyn

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No I was referring to the way you are using the test strips, in other words I just don't trust them enough to believe that your nitrates are actually going up.

However, if you are now losing fish then it's time to get a little drastic. It might be time for a 70% water change to see if we can't get them down a bit. Then back to the 30% changes until it's under control. A 70% change can be stressful but I want to do it while the fish for the most part are healthier. The longer they are in those high nitrates the weaker they will become and doing a 70% change might be too much for them. I'm not sure it won't be for one or two of them now, but better to lose 1 then all. Also you might want to look into that EasyBalance I mentioned above. It might help get the nitrates under control at least temporarily until you can balance out the system with water changes. I don't know that I would use it permanently but at least while your nitrates are so high it might help.
 
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