Nitrite Is All Over The Place

Discussion in 'Snails' started by Brysonnnn, Apr 18, 2017.

  1. BrysonnnnNew MemberMember

    I guess I should preface that I've been looking on here for a while, tried almost everything, but I'm finally giving in and making an account.
    My tank is about a month old, and I stupidly bought fish and the tank the same day without knowing about the nitrogen cycle. Now that I've been progressing very carefully with the fish (7 danios and a mystery snail) the ammonia has lowered to 0, nitrates at 40, but my nitrites are off the scale. I have the precious master test kit, so I know it's accurate. I just bought it so it's not out of date.
    So I need help, not sure if soon or not because this has been happening for about a week.
    Nitrites are above 5 ppm ( test only goes to 5)
    To attempt to fix this I have:
    -Done multiple vacuumings (at least 10)
    -a 90% water change which lowered the nitrites for all of 5 minutes and went back up
    -added fluval cycle to the tank
    -reduced feeding to lower ammonia
    -tested tap water (0 nitrites)

    I'm running out of ideas here. I haven't changed the filter because I'm scared it'll start the cycle over again. The fish seem to be taking it well though. I've had no problems and they look great, but I still get unnerved about these levels.
    Am I missing something?
  2. AvalancheDaveWell Known MemberMember

    You're not the first to report really high nitrite values with fish seemingly unaffected by levels that should kill them.

  3. BrysonnnnNew MemberMember

    Yeah I've read a lot of posts here and they're just as perplexed as I am.. I just can't find an answer

  4. Little Tank of HappinessWell Known MemberMember

    Same problem! Except mine is with ammonia!

  5. AllieStenFishlore VIPMember

    Have you looked into the nitrite reducing filter media? Or thought about adding plants? Both things can reduce Nitrites in your tank.
  6. BrysonnnnNew MemberMember

    I've considered adding some anacharis I just haven't gotten around to it yet. I might try the nitrite reducing media. I work at a pet store so I can get this stuff fairly easily, it's just the money
  7. AvalancheDaveWell Known MemberMember

    The reports of wacky ammonia tests started several months ago. I wonder if API has some equipment that's gone out of calibration. They probably manufacture one batch of one type of test and then move on to the next.
  8. BrysonnnnNew MemberMember

    I might take my water in to get it tested with the kit I have at work, they've had no problems
  9. Tiny_TanganyikansWell Known MemberMember

    I ran into this issue a while back with a sensitive tanganyikan tank. I had a crash due to municipal water change.

    What I did was;

    First took a couple water samples and mixed them with fresh clean tap water to determine what ratio needed to be changed to get the nitrites down. In my case it was 80%

    Since there were sensitive fish in there I did 5x dose of prime to keep it detoxed and instead of doing a whole 80% change at once I did a bunch of 15% changes gradually. I also have on hand nitrazorb and use it in my nitrate sensitive aquariums. I put the nitrazorb in my filter and it removed all traces of nitrite until the tank was stable.

    Nitrazorb would of worked by itself but It was only a side effect of the actual problem I was dealing with.
  10. AvalancheDaveWell Known MemberMember

    Sounds like a good idea.

    Are there batch numbers or manufacturing dates on these bottles? Maybe people should start posting them to see if there's a pattern.
  11. fjhWell Known MemberMember

    Have you tested your tap water? It is possible you have really high nitrites in the water you are replacing it with, so a water change wouldn't actually lower the nitrite levels in the tank
  12. BrysonnnnNew MemberMember

    Yeah I've tested it at least 3 times, 0 nitrites every time.


    this is the batch lot on my bottle, says it expires in 2021 too so that doesn't tell me much.

    I'm gonna try that test idea to see how much I need to do to lower the nitrites, but since the 90% didn't do anything I'm not sure it'll do me any good.
    It might give some insight if the test bottle is the issue, though.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 18, 2017
  13. AvalancheDaveWell Known MemberMember

    If the one at work gives completely different results it would be good to know its lot number as well.

    I'll start a list of lot numbers.

    Can you post the lot number and expiration date of your two ammonia reagent bottles?
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 18, 2017
  14. BrysonnnnNew MemberMember

    I did some different ratios plus an ammo test of my tap to make sure that wasn't the issue. Everything tested accordingly, 4 ml of the tank was above 5, 3ml was at 5 or around, and 1 ml is around 1 ppm.
  15. Little Tank of HappinessWell Known MemberMember

    Oh seriously?! I ordered my test kit about a month ago off Amazon. Says the ammonia is 8-9 ppm and I am thinking how the heck are my fish living?!
  16. AWheelerWell Known MemberMember

    Did you do a half tap/half tank test?
  17. BrysonnnnNew MemberMember

    I didn't, but the 1/5 tank and 4/5 tap still came up with 1 ppm, which still isn't good
  18. AWheelerWell Known MemberMember

    Are you using prime or anything that reduces the nitrites that can harm the fish?
  19. Little Tank of HappinessWell Known MemberMember

    Sure. Would have replied same time as I sent other message but I had some quick hw to do [​IMG]
  20. Lonewolf9395Valued MemberMember

    The Nitrite spike is perfectly normal. Until it is over and your nitrite converting bacteria has reproduced to the needed level you should do daily water changes, probably about 50%. You are only 4 weeks into the cycle. Patience, daily testing and frequent water changes are what is needed.

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