I Think There's Something Wrong With My Tank Water?

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Brittany_Jade_

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I have had my 55 gallon goldfish tank set up for 2 months now and I was pretty sure it was fully cycled but now my nitrates are super high and no matter what I do I can't seem to lower them. I have two fancy goldfish and two commons in the tank. The water parameters are
GH: 120ppm
KH: 40ppm
PH: 6.5
Nitrite: 0.5ppm
Nitrate: 80ppm
Ammonia: 0.5ppm

The goldfish are exhibiting strange behaviours such as twitching fins, gasping for air, and occasionally darting around the tank. I also have 2 hornwort plants in the tank.

Thanks!
 

david1978

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How often are you doing water changes? How much at each time? Are there nitrates in your source water? A cycle reduces ammonia to nitrites and finally nitrates, water changes reduce nitrates.
 
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Brittany_Jade_

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david1978 said:
How often are you doing water changes? How much at each time? Are there nitrates in your source water? A cycle reduces ammonia to nitrites and finally nitrates, water changes reduce nitrates.
I do weekly water changes of 25% or more if I feel it's necessary. That's why I'm so confused. I understand how the cycle works but for some reason, with my regular water changes and **** of my plants in can't get rid of the nitrates.
 

david1978

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Sounds like you either need to up the frequency or ammount of your water changes.
 
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Brittany_Jade_

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But why would that be the case? I'm doing the recommendation for water changes and more. I've over cleaned my tanks before and crashed my cycle so that's what I'm trying to avoid.
 

david1978

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Were did you get this recommendation from? Overcleaning might crash a cycle but water changes will not since there is very little bacteria in water.
 
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david1978 said:
Were did you get this recommendation from? Overcleaning might crash a cycle but water changes will not since there is very little bacteria in water.
25% was recommended at my LFS. I worry about crashing my cycle because I've done it before from water changes that's all.
 

david1978

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Goldiemom how often do you change water in your goldfish tanks.
 

Goldiemom

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Don't listen to you LFS. My nitrates would be at 80ppm too if I only did a 25% w/c a week. You just need to do a little more work. I do a water change of 50% every Wednesday evening, including syphoning the gravel. I then do my big tank cleaning on Sunday (syphone gravel, clean glass, wash filter media IF needed, etc.) I have a 55 gallon too with 4 fancies in it. I hate to tell you but 1) You don't mix fancy goldfish with common goldfish. I have some common also but they were in another tank until they went to a new pond that I built. Your's will have to eventually go to a pond also. 2) You will probably NEVER get your nitrates to stay lower than 20, mind usually stay at about 40 unless I just did the w/c. Within a few days they will be back up to 40. You chose a breed of fish that have a huge bio waste load. It's as simple as that. If you want goldies, you have to do the work. By the way, you are at your limit in stocking...I would recommend getting another tank for the Commons. You can have 4 fancies in a 55 gallon but the commons push it way over the limit. Glad you love goldies and here to help at any time. We all learn from our mistakes...my first goldfish was a common and that's why I now have a pond. lol P.S. - I do use a Python syphon and hook it up to my kitchen sink so I don't have to carry buckets. It's the only way to do it and I get my tank clean in less than 30 minutes.
 

TexasDomer

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You won't crash your cycle just be doing large water changes, as long as you do them properly (dechlorinating, similar temp and pH). You can crash your cycle by throwing away your filter media, washing it in tap water, doing a large water change with a really low pH water, not dechlorinating, etc.
 
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