So I am really struggling to get my water levels under control... I had been struggling to get my Ammonia levels down for a few weeks doing water changes every few days if need be... Well the good news is that my ammonia levels are finally reading and stay around 0 which is great... However at the same time that happen my nitrates which had been ready down around 0 have spike to someplace between 40 and 80 parts... What may have caused this and is water changes the solutions for this as well.... Once again thanks guys!
Its all part of the cycle, after the ammonia is turned into nitrItes, its then converted into nitrAtes and these are removed mostly by water changes, and some can be removed if your tank has enough live plants. The best way to remove them is through weekly water changes.
What are the level of NitrAtes in your tap water? Most people would agree in an aquarium its alright to have up to 60-80ppm. Mine hovers around 80 or so but its a large almost fully stocked aquarium so theres plenty of ammonia to be converted
Test nitrite. That is the deadly one that spikes when ammonia goes down. Nitrate safe levels depend on the fish, but they will always climb, so bigger water changes to get it below 40 will keep it from being 160 next week.
Nitrates rarely kills straight out. They crash the pH or depress the immune system so fish get nasties like hole-in-the-head. Keeping nitrate low is good practice and high nitrate is a good indicator for "needs a water change", but nitrate is the last thing you should worry about. Always take care ammonia and nitrite first as these will kill fish directly.