Nitrate Removal Products

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Online Littlefish

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Nitrate removal products
« on: July 13, 2018, 07:44:07 AM »
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Nitrates in my tap water are 40ppm.  :o
According to my water company website they have seen a steady increase in nitrates over the past 30 years, and "detailed analysis of data taken from  routine samples has given us a  clear indication that chemical quality and an ability to comply with the water quality nitrate standard is likely to fail during the next five years, as nitrate levels continue to increase."
They currently blend the water with that from a lower nitrate source, but are at their limit for blending, so have put an alternative plan in place. "In delivering our plan we have now commissioned our first nitrate removal plant, with a second currently under construction and due for completion this year.  We have also built a number of booster stations in our distribution network to ensure the treated water can get to where it is needed.  We plan to construct third nitrate removal plant before 2015."
As we are now in 2018, and still have nitrate levels of 40ppm, I'm looking for alternatives to reduce the amounts of nitrates in the water going into my tanks.
Does anyone have any experience with nitrate removal filter media? Does it work? Does it have any other impact on the water?
Has anyone used anything other products to reduce nitrate?
Has anyone used hydra stream filters?
I can't really use a tap water/RO water mix for my axolotl tank because I don't really want to reduce the hardness of the water too much, although I can reduce it a little. Those guys are also not too good with floating plants because it's quite a low light tank, and the axolotls would probably eat the plants by mistake when going to the surface for air.
I'm also a tad reluctant to add chemicals to the water with any of my tanks, but especially for the axolotls - they may be built like tanks, and be quite cumbersome, but they do have very sensitive skin.
I'm in the process of reworking a lot of my tanks, and most of them will end up with more plants, but that doesn't seem to be enough to have any sort of significant impact on my nitrates.
Any suggestions, or information based on personal experience, would be much appreciated.  :)

Offline daveyng

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Re: Nitrate removal products
« Reply #1 on: July 13, 2018, 08:50:41 AM »
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I have a Pozzani nitrate removal filter which I used at every water change until I went to 50/50 RO. it’s one of “10” big blue” range of filters. It is really effective at removing nitrate. I purchased one of the larger models as I used it on a daily basis. The filters lasted about 3 months as my tap water is very hard.
Don’t know what the current cost is I paid about £50 for it. Replacement filters are about £27.00 a pop.
Have a look for Pozzani in your web browser.

Online Littlefish

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Re: Nitrate removal products
« Reply #2 on: July 13, 2018, 09:35:03 AM »
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Thanks for the information @daveyng
The Pozzani filters look as if they could be a good answer to my nitrate problem, and very reasonably priced.
I also see that they do a filter for reducing water hardness as well....I may have a look into this to see if I could do away with purchasing RO water from the LFS for the river tank.
Very interesting.  ;D

Offline Matt

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Re: Nitrate removal products
« Reply #3 on: July 13, 2018, 06:20:06 PM »
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I'm going to look this up too... but one thought before I do... could you store freshwater in a tub with floating plants for a week prior to putting it in the aquarium? Not sure how effective this would be...

Offline Matt

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Re: Nitrate removal products
« Reply #4 on: July 13, 2018, 06:22:49 PM »
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Be interested to hear @Sue s thoughts on the water hardness reducing filter which appears to work on an ion exchange basis... I seem to recall something that this isn't great for fish?

Offline Sue

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Re: Nitrate removal products
« Reply #5 on: July 13, 2018, 07:32:40 PM »
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The problem with ion exchange resins is what they exchange calcium and magnesium for.

A lot of water softeners exchange them for sodium, and this is not good for fish. It increases the total dissolved solids, something you don't want to do if you are trying to make water less hard, and with the possible exception of Rift Lake cichlids no fresh water fish have evolved to cope with a lot of sodium in the water.

Filters like Brita exchange calcium and magnesium ions for hydrogen ions. pH is the measure of hydrogen ions in water - the more there are, the lower the pH. Adding more via the Brita filter lowers the pH. I used to have a Brita jug so I tested the pH of filtered water and it was off the bottom of the scale - ie below 6.0, though I have no idea how low it actually was. I know I have low KH but the filter dropped my pH from 7.6 for freshly run tap water to less than 6.0

I've just looked at Pozzani's website, and I can't find out what exactly their hardness reducing filter does, other than the simple statement that it is an ion exchange resin :-\

Offline daveyng

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Re: Nitrate removal products
« Reply #6 on: July 14, 2018, 11:14:15 AM »
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I did think about purchasing the Hardness reducing filter when I got the Nitrate one. I didn’t go through with it as I too was unsure what they used to reduce hardness.
@Littlefish have you considered an RO system yourself. Or is the wastage of water a concern through these units.

Online Littlefish

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Re: Nitrate removal products
« Reply #7 on: July 14, 2018, 01:27:36 PM »
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There are a few reasons that I wasn't sure about getting an RO system @daveyng
The water wastage, the fact that the kitchen is quite small, and I live in a rented property.
I've been to the LFS this morning and purchases more RO, mainly for the river tank, but might also look into how much I would need to do everything I want to do.

Offline Sue

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Re: Nitrate removal products
« Reply #8 on: July 18, 2018, 02:01:31 PM »
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By sheer co-incidence the subject of Pozzani filters came up on another forum at the same time. The person asking about hardness filters contacted the company and he's just reported what they said.

The resin in the Pozzani hardness filter is a cationic resin which swaps calcium and magnesium ions for hydrogen ions.

In other words, it works the same way as a Brita filter., and the water coming out of the filter will be softer but more acidic. Though where KH is very high, it may not alter the pH much at all. It's just water like mine with KH 3 that there is a significant effect

Online Littlefish

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Re: Nitrate removal products
« Reply #9 on: July 18, 2018, 02:37:05 PM »
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Thanks for the accurate information @Sue
I'll spend a bit of time having a think about this, and the pros/cons of both the nitrate and hardness filters, and how it could impact my systems.
Ages ago I did some testing on a glass to tap water that was left for several days, which ended up with a pH of around 8.2-8.4, so a drop in pH may not be such a huge issue for me, but it may be down to logisitics - how I hold large quantities of water for treatment with filters for several days so I know exactly what the parameters are prior to adding it to my tank.
At this point perhaps just a tap/RO water mix is just easier.

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