Well Water & Nitrates

NaturalGothic

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HI there!
My tap water is hard well water with a Ph of 7.6 and I have some questions. I don’t currently know if my tap water is in fact high in nitrates. (I’m picking up the API kit later on today) However, knowing that it can be high, I was wondering if there are ways to treat for nitrate before adding water to my tank. I’ve been using Tetra’s weekly easy balance plus when I do my water changes as a buffer but I’m afraid it’ll mess with my Ph. Do you have any tried and true solutions? And just to put this out there - a reverse osmosis machine is out of the question for me. I don’t have the room for one nor the money. Any advice would be lovely and appreciated.
 

DuaneV

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Dont think, get a test kit and know. Until then its just conjecture. If its HIGH in nitrates, you're options will be very limited. Since nitrates are the end product of the nitrogen cycle and one of the main reasons we perform water changes, you may not be able to use your tap water if it is in fact high in nitrates. And when I say high, I'm thinking anything over 20ppm.
 

Basil

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Absolutely agree with testing your water first to see what you have.
I could have saved myself a lot of heartache when I got back into the hobby if I had done that.
I finally discovered my well water has a dGH of 11, dKH of 0, ph of 5.3-5.5 ( that was with commercial testing) and nitrates between 10-40+.
I did go RO/DI and my fish are doing fantastic now. But I understand that is not an option.
So before I realized about the ph and dKH issue, I installed an under the sink nitrate filter. It did work although with the amount of water I needed each week, I needed to replace the filter quite frequently.
The only nitrate reducer substance I tried was nitrasorb pads in the filters. Didn’t seem to do anything.
 
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NaturalGothic

NaturalGothic

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DuaneV said:
Dont think, get a test kit and know. Until then its just conjecture. If its HIGH in nitrates, you're options will be very limited. Since nitrates are the end product of the nitrogen cycle and one of the main reasons we perform water changes, you may not be able to use your tap water if it is in fact high in nitrates. And when I say high, I'm thinking anything over 20ppm.
Basil said:
Absolutely agree with testing your water first to see what you have.
I could have saved myself a lot of heartache when I got back into the hobby if I had done that.
I finally discovered my well water has a dGH of 11, dKH of 0, ph of 5.3-5.5 ( that was with commercial testing) and nitrates between 10-40+.
I did go RO/DI and my fish are doing fantastic now. But I understand that is not an option.
So before I realized about the ph and dKH issue, I installed an under the sink nitrate filter. It did work although with the amount of water I needed each week, I needed to replace the filter quite frequently.
The only nitrate reducer substance I tried was nitrasorb pads in the filters. Didn’t seem to do anything.
Update: Ok guys, I’ve done the nitrate test a few times and I keep getting different readings. I know this test can be tricky but this isn’t making much sense to me. The first one I did, I only took a sample of the 29 gal tank water. the color was too dark for 5ppm but too light for 10pmm. Let’s call it 8ppm. I haven’t tested my tank water since but I will be tonight. I then took a sample of my untreated well water. The first time I did it, it was a perfect 0ppm. I knew that can’t be right since I have well water so I retested. Test# 2 - 40ppm, test# 3 - 0ppm, test# 4 - 10ppm, test# 5 - 0ppm. W.T.F. guys...like I know this test is easy to screw up but I know **** well I did it right. Anyone have a clue what’s going on? I need some help.
 

Basil

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Hmmm. the only thing that I can think of is that you are not getting
Bottle #2 mixed thoroughly. It needs to be mixed really, really well right before adding to keep it in a uniform solution. If it isn’t than for each test, even though you may add 10 drops, the concentration is different. Make sense??
 

david1978

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If your tanks under 10 your well water can't be 40.
 

DuaneV

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NaturalGothic said:
I then took a sample of my untreated well water. The first time I did it, it was a perfect 0ppm. I knew that can’t be right since I have well water
HUH!?!?! I have well water that has 0 ammonia, 0 nitirtes and 0 nitrates. Never had ANY of those things in my water in the 36 years and 2 wells Ive had on this property.

Im guessing the first time you did it right, the second time not so much. If your tank is showing less than 10ppm, your water can't have 40ppm. Nitrates dont just go away.
 

JettsPapa

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DuaneV said:
HUH!?!?! I have well water that has 0 ammonia, 0 nitirtes and 0 nitrates. Never had ANY of those things in my water in the 36 years and 2 wells Ive had on this property.

Im guessing the first time you did it right, the second time not so much. If your tank is showing less than 10ppm, your water can't have 40ppm. Nitrates dont just go away.
I agree. I also have well water, but while I've never tested it for nitrates I have often tested my tank water, and never seen a reading much over 20 ppm, and often much less.
 

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