high nitrate levels, not sure what to do

Discussion in 'New to Reefing' started by num451, Mar 1, 2012.

  1. num451

    num451

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    hello, i'm new to this forum and new to saltwater tanks. i recently set up a tank and have been letting it cycle and tested today with the following results:

    pH - 8.0
    ammonia - 0.25 ppm
    nitrite - 0 ppm
    nitrate - 40 ppm

    the guy at the pet store said that i need to change out 25% of the water and test again in a few days but i keep reading in other forums that i should NOT change the water until the cycle is complete. i don't have any fish in the tank and i don't mind waiting a while to get this set up properly; i'm just not sure what to do about these supposed high nitrate levels. does anyone have any advice for me?

    thank you!

    oh yeah, my specific gravity is about 1.025 if that matters/helps
     
    num451, Mar 1, 2012
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  2. num451

    little_fish Moderator

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    When the ammonia and nitrites are zero, your cycle is over and then you do a water change to bring down the nitrates!

    Hello and Welcome too!
     
    little_fish, Mar 1, 2012
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  3. num451

    chuck78 The Reefanatic

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    If you do a water change, it will only prolong the cycling process. The presence of ammonia w/o nitrite (in some cases) means that your tank has not started to cycle yet. I would toss a piece of shrimp in the tank to get things moving. As for having nitrates present...I would test some of the water that you use before you put it in the tank to see if those nitrates are there before hand. Using R/O water (if you don't already) may simplify alot of problems for you.
     
    chuck78, Mar 1, 2012
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  4. num451

    num451

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    thanks for the quick responses! i've been adding a small bit of fish food everyday. used distilled deionized/reverse osmosis water to be sure that i wasn't adding anything undesireable, have the temperature at around 77 degrees (give or take), have the lights on 24/7. i think that i didn't introduce any nitrates into the tank from the get go, so should i just wait and see what happens? one response says to do a water change, the other response says not to do a water change... i'm still unsure as to what to do. but, again, i do appreciate the quick responses! :mrgreen:
     
    num451, Mar 1, 2012
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  5. num451

    chuck78 The Reefanatic

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    Actually...little fish & I are on the same page b/c she's saying to do the water change when your ammonia is at 0 (when tank is done cycling)
     
    chuck78, Mar 2, 2012
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  6. num451

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    No point in keeping your lights on 24/7 -- that will lead to major algae problems. Keeping them on for 8 to 10 hours a day is pretty standard.
     
    Bifferwine, Mar 2, 2012
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  7. num451

    num451

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    ahhhhhh... gotcha. i'll wait a few days and then test again. thank you for the advice everyone. i appreciate it! :mrgreen:
     
    num451, Mar 2, 2012
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  8. num451

    Smitty

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    Hello and welcome to the site...everyone has you covered.
     
    Smitty, Mar 2, 2012
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