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Old 01/26/2018, 07:02 PM   #1
stevediaz1
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What’s the best media for a sump to reduce nitrates

What’s the best media for a sump to reduce nitrates I am building a 40 breeder as my sump and I want to place a media to reduce nitrates as best as any media can any suggestions ohh I also want to reduce ammonia and nitrite


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Old 01/26/2018, 07:04 PM   #2
hijinks
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What seems to be working for me in the sump is cheato with a strong grow LED, skimmer sized for my tank/bio load and 2 marinepure 4 inch thick blocks.


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Old 01/26/2018, 07:05 PM   #3
stevediaz1
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I forgot to mention I am looking into doing all this naturally no chemicals like nopox


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Old 01/26/2018, 07:09 PM   #4
stevediaz1
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They say pond matrix (larger pebbles )is best or seachem matrix (smaller pebbles )are greatest surface and density gives you best of both worlds in aerobic and anaerobic bacteria for nitrifying and denitrifying process


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Old 01/26/2018, 07:38 PM   #5
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The Matrix product are all effectively artificial live rock. They will work but they require a lot of media to make much of a difference. They will provide filtration for ammonia and nitrite. For reducing a high nitrate level, something like a denitrator coil or reactor can work, as can carbon dosing. I'm not sure what you intend to keep in the tank, so I don't know how much investment is worthwhile, though.


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Old 01/27/2018, 03:21 AM   #6
stevediaz1
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The Matrix product are all effectively artificial live rock. They will work but they require a lot of media to make much of a difference. They will provide filtration for ammonia and nitrite. For reducing a high nitrate level, something like a denitrator coil or reactor can work, as can carbon dosing. I'm not sure what you intend to keep in the tank, so I don't know how much investment is worthwhile, though.
I intend to keep a mixed reef with lots of fish high bioload I am in the process of the build I currently have 2 marine pure blocks and I intend on not sure yet on buying pond matrix mixed with seachem matrix about 8liters worth combined the whole reason is to keep my nitrates below or at 5ppm I want to avoid water changes in the near future


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Old 01/27/2018, 08:27 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by stevediaz1 View Post
I intend to keep a mixed reef with lots of fish high bioload I am in the process of the build I currently have 2 marine pure blocks and I intend on not sure yet on buying pond matrix mixed with seachem matrix about 8liters worth combined the whole reason is to keep my nitrates below or at 5ppm I want to avoid water changes in the near future
Sounds like you are setting yourself up for failure IMO..

high bioload + avoiding water changes isn't the best plan.. and even more so if you intend to avoid beneficial things like carbon dosing.. and its such a small tank that water changes aren't much work nor cost at all..

But.. plenty of porous rock/sand in the tank + a bunch of marine pure blocks + good skimmer will certainly help some..


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Old 01/27/2018, 07:22 PM   #8
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Water changes do a lot more than lower the nitrate level, but fish are very insensitive to nitrate, in any case. You probably could ignore the level. I don't think the Matrix will do anything that Marine Pure blocks won't do.


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Old 01/28/2018, 05:25 PM   #9
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My tank is 110g. I have a ton of pond matrix (15L), marine pure balls, and two Xport NO3 Bricks in my sump. My fish load is a little high. 1 foxface, 1 wrasse, 10 smaller fish. My nitrates went up till I started carbon dosing. A little NoPox daily and it drop back below 5ppm.


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Old 01/28/2018, 08:46 PM   #10
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Love my chaeto, bio pellets and skimmer. has kept my system in check. not a big fan of chemical filtration hard on wallet and easy to forget


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Old 01/29/2018, 07:28 AM   #11
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my vote is for sulfur media (for just nitrates), it won't do you much good on its own unlike the marine pure, etc. It will need to be in a reactor of sorts, You can build your own sulfur denitrator easily for about 100 bucks including the sulfur media. There are alot of good designs out there, personally I plumbed mine into my my return pump. In waste water treatment these are called trickle filters. Some places do make them specifically for aquariums, you can buy one online if you didnt wanna build one.

I used to carbon dose, but it just never seemed to cut it and I ended up with crazy cyno.. Sulfur denitrator crushes it, the water that comes out the effluent is 0ppm. But be warned sulfur reactors will throw off your alkalinity so it will no longer be consumed in equal parts of calcium and alk rather your alk demands will get higher.


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Old 01/30/2018, 04:49 PM   #12
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Lots of ways to remove nitrate, but ceramic media is not really one of them. It will mostly be a substrate for nitrfying bacteria that use nitrate and ammonia, not nitrate. BUT, there is more bacteria in your tank than that... so it could also be a good substrate for bacteria blooms that you control by other means (i.e. carbon dosing without a pellet reactor), which can take up NO3 and PO4 for cell synthesis.

Anyway, ceramic filter media can be used as a tool (I use it!), but I simply consider them homes for aerobic bacteria, with minimal potential for true "denitrification". People will call them nitrate factories, which is misleading (and not even a bad thing), nothing wrong with a constant source of nitrate in a tank.... it's about balance.

IMO the best way to export nutrients (as nitrate or before it becomes nitrate), beyond the basic setup of live rock and flow, is using a skimmer and macro algae (refugium or scrubber). Only after that would I resort to carbon dosing (needs skimmer anyway), and then media based reactors. Often people "do it all" in some war against nitrate, and end up with ultra low nutrient tanks, which is BAD!


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Old 01/30/2018, 07:09 PM   #13
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The only downside of a refugium (if you have the space) is the cost of lighting it, and possibly some noise from the pumping. Denitrator devices (coils, sulfur reactors) will work, although sometimes they produce too much hydrogen sulfide. That's rare, though.


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Old 01/31/2018, 02:00 PM   #14
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Lots of ways to remove nitrate, but ceramic media is not really one of them. It will mostly be a substrate for nitrfying bacteria that use nitrate and ammonia, not nitrate. BUT, there is more bacteria in your tank than that... so it could also be a good substrate for bacteria blooms that you control by other means (i.e. carbon dosing without a pellet reactor), which can take up NO3 and PO4 for cell synthesis.

Anyway, ceramic filter media can be used as a tool (I use it!), but I simply consider them homes for aerobic bacteria, with minimal potential for true "denitrification". People will call them nitrate factories, which is misleading (and not even a bad thing), nothing wrong with a constant source of nitrate in a tank.... it's about balance.

IMO the best way to export nutrients (as nitrate or before it becomes nitrate), beyond the basic setup of live rock and flow, is using a skimmer and macro algae (refugium or scrubber). Only after that would I resort to carbon dosing (needs skimmer anyway), and then media based reactors. Often people "do it all" in some war against nitrate, and end up with ultra low nutrient tanks, which is BAD!
Agree with this completely. I have a good skimmer + lots of media. Nitrates still got up, so I got a macro algae reactor. Nitrates still more than I wanted, so I dosed a little NoPox. Nitrates went down tank looks great.

Im sure I feed a little too much ( all gets eaten quickly) , but thats my choice and I have a few Anthias. I am glad I have the media as I dont have a lot of live rock, I dont see any downside to getting lots of it. For me it did not keep nitrates down. Interestingly I have never had an issue with phosphates.


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Old 01/31/2018, 07:16 PM   #15
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IMO you will get to a point where water changes can be eliminated but it won't be in the first year to year and a half. It just takes time for the tank to mature and go through the major stages. On the bright side a 40B plus sump is still relatively manageable to change 25-50 percent water should the need arise.

Macro reactor or refugium plus carbon dosing and heavy skimming will be your best bet (other than large water changes of course) to get to your goal.


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Old 01/31/2018, 08:47 PM   #16
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The only downside of a refugium (if you have the space) is the cost of lighting it, and possibly some noise from the pumping. Denitrator devices (coils, sulfur reactors) will work, although sometimes they produce too much hydrogen sulfide. That's rare, though.
A small grow LED from home depot won't necessarily drain the pocket...and easy to plumb a line off the return pump to feed the refugium...no added noise.

If you have room...they are very easy to setup.


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Old 02/02/2018, 08:00 AM   #17
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in my experience a significant sized deep sand bed is probably one of the best for lowest maintenance nitrate reducers, 7+ inches deep as large of sq/ft as possible.


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Old 02/03/2018, 01:27 PM   #18
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It may be overkill for a tank that size, but an algae scrubber is a great natural way to export nutrients. I find it also works as a nice buffer if you tend to overfeed sometimes.


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Old 02/05/2018, 02:38 AM   #19
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Nitrates are the bane of my tank. I have a closed system using a fluval 406. Don't skip over this reply because of my current system. When I setup my new tank it will have an area for macro algea to grow. My problem is there is nothing exporting the nitrates or phosphates. Once you have an area for macro algea to grow and good air exchange, the macro algea will take care of everything you.

You will never eliminate water changes. You should be adding trace elements and pulling out "stale" water. If you want things to mature and grow you are going to dose nutrients AND do water changes. The resident of your aquarium are animals just like a dog or cat. You will have to feed and clean up after them no matter what you chose. When my dog makes brown snow in the winter, I know the brown will be there in the spring. When my tang makes brown water, I know the brown will be there when I vacuum this week.


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Old 02/05/2018, 02:42 AM   #20
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Also, once you have high nitrates, they are ridiculously hard to remove.


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Old 02/05/2018, 03:03 AM   #21
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I hate that I can't edit posts here. Anyways here is a great read about carbon and nitrates.

http://www.saltwatersmarts.com/activ...aquarium-2908/

IMO the deeper the sand bed will just set you up for deeper problems later. Yes the sand bed allows for more bacteria to grow NOW, but in a few years you will struggle with "old tank syndrome". So you will be replacing all that sand and basically recycling the tank. Your tank has grown accustomed to your habits, but it can't support it anymore. You have to think about more than next year in this hobby. Not trying to turn you off, I'm just trying to pass along valuable information I have learned.


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Old 02/05/2018, 08:55 AM   #22
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I have a refugium that is 15% of my systems total water volume lit with a powerful light in the proper spectrum and it brought the nutrients down far enough that i am dosing 10mL of nitrate back into my tank daily.


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Old 02/05/2018, 06:45 PM   #23
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I hate that I can't edit posts here. Anyways here is a great read about carbon and nitrates.

http://www.saltwatersmarts.com/activ...aquarium-2908/
There are a few factual errors in the article, but carbon can be useful as a filtration media. It's not clear how much it can remove.

Quote:
IMO the deeper the sand bed will just set you up for deeper problems later.
A deep sand bed requires some careful stocking choices, but I ran one for a bit over 10 years. The sand was completely fine after that period of time, and I would have kept on running the tank if I hadn't had such a difficult work travel schedule.

If the tank is stocked with animals that kill the sandbed (goby fishes, "sand sifting" starfish, etc), it won't function, and if the tank gets more food that it should, the sand can become a mess, but deep sandbeds do support some interesting animals, and they might help some with filtration.


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