Very Easy Question On Water Change...

DaleM

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TombedOrchestra said:
I just added new fish. How long do I wait until doing a water change?

(I.e., is it stressful for a new fish to have their water changed? Or would that help them?)

Thanks!
Wait until your nitrates get to about 20ppm and then you can do a small water change. Nitrates usually determine how often and/or how much water you change, although there are other limiting factors such as mineral content in the water, etc. Best to try keep nitrates around 20 or below, unless you have a heavily planted tank
 
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TombedOrchestra

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I have 3 plants in my 55 gallon. My nitrates have been around 40-80 for many months. However, I did 2 back to back water changes and now it's around 20.

Funny story, not sure why this happened.... At home I always test Nitrates and come out between 20 or 80 (more recently 20). I took the sample into the store after some fish had died and they tested it and it came out at 0-5. ?

I did take the sample in the morning and then brought it to them after work in the PM. It was in a sealed API tube. She said it wouldn't make a difference how long it sat out in the tube before the test.

Thoughts?
 

DaleM

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I'd be relying on your tests more than theirs. Very few who work in pet stores are very knowledgeable. They probably didn't shake bottle 2 enough and/or didn't shake the tube enough

If you have a heavily planted tank, higher nitrates aren't too bad so long as the plants are utilising them. Potassium is often a limiting macro nutrient in the aquarium and can affect a plants ability to take of nitrates. Plants like swords and crypts get very few nutrients from the water column as they are heavy root feeders, so high nitrates in the water column aren't exceptionally helpful to them
 
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