High nitrates

  • Axel3034
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Axel3034 created the topic: High nitrates

I have my Oscar alone in a 70 gallon aquarium. I noticed parts of his fins were missing today when I got home from work, it is my water change day today so I decided I would test the water, ammonia 0, nitrite 0, and nitrate is 80-160 or higher not sure, the test tube is red, a deep red. My filtration is two cascade 300 HOB filters. Both rated for 100 gallons a piece. So my question is how do I lower the nitrates and how to cure the fin rot. My Oscar is a little over a year old. He is a little Over 10 inches in length. I feed every 3 days or so, pellets. I also do a 25-30% water change weekly.
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bland replied the topic: High nitrates

Clean water with more larger water changes will get your nitrates down and help the fins.

For a 70g at least 50% twice a week water change would be needed to keep nitrates below 20.
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Rocksor replied the topic: High nitrates

You need to also rinse out your filter media every 3-4 months in old tank water as well.
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Suprd71 replied the topic: High nitrates

Hello and welcome to the site. Do as instructed and watch for improvement in your fish.


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Axel3034 replied the topic: High nitrates

I change my carbon out once a month, and I alternate between the two, and I just set this tank up about a two months ago and just put him in a month ago, I moved him up from a 55. All new filter media every 6 months (the black along for biological filtration) but maybe I'll just change it out every 4 months maybe?
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Suprd71 replied the topic: High nitrates

To clarify a couple of things. Dont bother using carbon at all, it has a specific purpose, but not as an everyday filter component. You do not change filter media. You rinse the mechanical portion as necessary. Could be every week, could be much longer.You gauge the necessary frequency by the condition of the media. The biological portion should remain for the most part untouched. It houses all your beneficial bacteria. Renewing this only puts your tank back to square 1, that being completely uncycled. Maintain your filters as necessary, up your water change sched, and thoroughly vac your substrate with each water change.


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Axel3034 replied the topic: High nitrates

Okay, so completely blow away with carbon and run pretty much a sponge for biological filtration in the filter and that's it and just rinse it off as I notice my levels starting to rise or something then? And waterchange every 3-5 days or so then as up posed to every 7? Or up the quantity of water I am taking out?
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Suprd71 replied the topic: High nitrates

your filter should have 2 different sponges, or pads. One should be the bio pad, this gets rinsed only if you see it clogged. Behind that should be a sponge or 2 that is the mechanical portion that should be kept relatively clean. Rinse that one in a bucket of tank water. Dont use tap water to clean any filter components. You want to keep your nitrate under 20 at all times. Closer to 10 will keep a healthier fish. You will likely need a large change every 4-5 days, 75% volume each change.


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Axel3034 replied the topic: High nitrates

Okay, and with the 75% warterchange, will that be normal waterchange from now on or just a for now thing
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Suprd71 replied the topic: High nitrates

You have a large messy cichlid in a small tank. To give your fish the best chance at a long life, water must be kept very clean. Change as much as you possibly can. A larger volume change removes more toxins at once, so yes, my recommendation is to do 3/4 volume, permanent. If you had a bigger tank, say around 120 gals, and better filtration you could do one large change per week.


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