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Old 12/13/2018, 01:52 AM   #1
eutimio
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Dosing nitrates. Need some guidance.

Hey guys, I posted this in another forum as well. Was hoping for some extra insight...here is the deal:

My nitrates are always 0. ELOS test
Some of my SPS are a bit faded. I feed the fish once a day, various blends of mysis, scallop, callanus etc that I mixed together; I dose phytoplankton and aminos about 3 times a week.
Chaeto has grown tremendously in the last month but ever since harvesting it stopped growing. Possibly lack of nutrient.

I was wondering, maybe time to dose some nitrates?
I was gonna buy seachem flourish nitrogen and dose until I start to see the levels rise to 5ppm and keep it there with a daily dose.

Ive also read nitrate will be consumed at different rates throughout the week which makes it even more complicated and an extra chore with testing frequently if that’s the case.

What’s your guys opinion ?

Phosphates are 0 as well on ELOS( regular not the pro kit)maybe unreliable kit.
I’m not getting a green or brown algae on the glass at all, I can go for 4-5 days and just get a slight white haze but nothing more.

I was even contemplating taking the chaeto out.
I have a skimmer and use a filter sock, replaced every 3-4 days.
Used to run GAC in reactor but took that offline.
Any help on this matter would be appreciated.
Ive never had to dose nitrates and I wanna get it right the first time.

Tank is 17 gallons, 20 gallon sump.
2 clowns and a lyretail Anthias.
Minimal clean up crew. 5 snails or so.
Dont know if I can add more fish to up the nitrates that way . They’d have to be pretty big to put a dent in the 0 nitrates right?
Maybe a tuxedo urchin? I’ve had one and used to poop a lot lol


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Old 12/13/2018, 04:28 AM   #2
eutimio
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After a bunch more reading on the subject, (head hurts, it’s 2:30AM), I ordered some sodium nitrate.
Will be interesting to see how my tank responds .
Is there a valid concern with PO4 plummeting while dosing NO3 , affecting SPS to the point of RTN? And should one dose PO4 as well or is fish food rich enough in PO4 to keep levels elevated?
I think the macro algae is coming out . It has worked too well it seems.


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Old 12/13/2018, 06:24 AM   #3
dubmaneh
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I dosed sodium nitrate when I was in a situation similar to yours. P04 may dip if your system is nitrate limited. My corals did colour up. However, I found it required too much testing and was waaaaay too finicky in my 60gal setup. My tank sitter crashed the tank when they overshot the NO3 dose.

Iíve since remedied the situation by adding more fish and feeding a little more (quantity and frequency). IMO I would recommend this route over dosing N03. Good luck either way.



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Old 12/13/2018, 07:21 PM   #4
bertoni
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Sodium nitrate should be cheaper.

I would have guess that the nitrate uptake rate wouldn't vary that much from day to day, unless the lighting changes. I'd give the dosing a shot, in any case.


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Old 12/14/2018, 01:25 AM   #5
eutimio
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bertoni View Post
Sodium nitrate should be cheaper.

I would have guess that the nitrate uptake rate wouldn't vary that much from day to day, unless the lighting changes. I'd give the dosing a shot, in any case.
Thank you!
I ordered the sodium nitrate but until that comes , I also bought a bottle of Seachem flourish nitrogen.
Label says derived from potassium nitrate and urea.
However, Iím lost at dosage.
This is meant for FW. How much should I dose for SW?
Is there a specific ml/gallon to hit a specific ppm?
I really donít wanna overdose, I started with 1ml/30 gallons but Iím not sure thatís a significant dose.
I found the calculator and figured out a dose for sodium nitrate though so when it comes I will have a better picture on how much nitrate is actually going in the water.


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Old 12/14/2018, 09:49 PM   #6
bertoni
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Here's my rule of thumb:
Quote:
Add about 0.52 grams of sodium nitrate per 100 gallons of water to raise the nitrate level by 1.0 ppm. That's about 1 tsp per 500-1000 gallons, very roughly. For potassium nitrate, use about .62 gram per 100 g.



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Old 12/14/2018, 11:49 PM   #7
eutimio
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Thank you Jonathan, that will be helpful when I get my sodium nitrate possibly tomorrow or Monday.
I was wondering if you had any recommended dose for the Seachem flourish nitrogen.
For planted tanks the label recommends 2.5ml per 40 gallons , twice a week.
Do you think that is a bit too much for a reef ?
I was just going with 1ml/30 gallons. Nitrate still 0.
Maybe I need a second kit to confirm this 0 reading.


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Old 12/14/2018, 11:53 PM   #8
eutimio
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bertoni View Post
Here's my rule of thumb:
Also , is it a good idea to up the dose if I still test 0 nitrates? How much is too much?
Any detrimental consequences of dosing enough sodium nitrate to raise it by 5ppm in one shot? Or should I keep it low and raise by 1ppm for a few days and increase slowly from there?


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Old 12/15/2018, 12:41 AM   #9
bertoni
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You can keep increasing the dose until you see a bit of nitrate. I would not change the level more than 1 ppm at shot, and I'd wait until it was quite a bit lower before adding more. I might even try 0.5 ppm or less for a first dose. After a few days of the low dose, I'd ramp up slowly once the level stays non-zero for a day, but you could consider raising the ppm dosage by 1 ppm per day until then. Of course, I'd back off if there were signs of trouble.


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Old 12/15/2018, 01:58 AM   #10
eutimio
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Thank you! Will report back on the results in a week or so!


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Old 12/20/2018, 12:03 AM   #11
rjjr1963
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eutimio View Post
Thank you!
I ordered the sodium nitrate but until that comes , I also bought a bottle of Seachem flourish nitrogen.
Label says derived from potassium nitrate and urea.
However, Iím lost at dosage.
This is meant for FW. How much should I dose for SW?
Is there a specific ml/gallon to hit a specific ppm?
I really donít wanna overdose, I started with 1ml/30 gallons but Iím not sure thatís a significant dose.
I found the calculator and figured out a dose for sodium nitrate though so when it comes I will have a better picture on how much nitrate is actually going in the water.
You really should use Seachem Flourish Phosphate. They have a calculator on the web site that's highly accurate. When dosing nitrate and phosphate I shoot for the Redfield Ration. 16 to 1. Nitrate over phosphate.


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