Holy Smokes Ammonia (ADA Aquasoil) - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-28-2006, 03:49 PM Thread Starter
 
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Holy Smokes Ammonia (ADA Aquasoil)

I set up a 10G tank at work two weeks ago with ADA Aquasoil and the ammonia has been off the charts ever since. There are no livestock in the tank at all besides a couple snails that hitchhiked in with the plants. I even used an established Aquaclear filter.

I think I saw some others mention ADA Aquasoil and ammonia, but any idea how long this will keep up? The poor fish I took out of this one to redo it with Aquasoil are cramped in another tank for what I thought would be a few days, but now is going on a few weeks.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-29-2006, 05:10 PM
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A little ammocarb or zeolite in the filter will take care of it, then will become media after its cleaned out the NH4. But its a 10G so you probably just have a HOB Aquaclear or something. It will disapate after a while (a few weeks) and is normal in ADA soil at first. The more plants you have the faster it will clear as ammonium is their nutrient of first choice.





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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-29-2006, 06:19 PM
 
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Some Zeocarb and a 10% waterchange will make everything better.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-29-2006, 06:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seraph0 View Post
I set up a 10G tank at work two weeks ago with ADA Aquasoil and the ammonia has been off the charts ever since...
What ammonia test kit are you using?

Sometimes Nessler ammonia test kits give a false positive reading. Nessler kits contain one reagent and are for freshwater use. API's freshwater ammonia kit is an example. Aquarium Pharmaceuticals Mini Ammonia Test Kit (Freshwater) at Big Al's Online

Ammonia test kits based on the salicylate method usually don't give false positive readings. These test kits contain two reagents and are for freshwater and saltwater use. An example of this test kit is API's freshwater/saltwater ammonia test kit. Aquarium Pharmaceuticals Ammonia Test Kit Freshwater/Saltwater (Salicylate) at Big Al's Online

I always use the salicylate method ammonia test kits.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-29-2006, 08:30 PM Thread Starter
 
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I am seemingly using the salicylate ammonia test as my test kit uses too bottles. High amounts of ammonia turn the solution green if that further validates the same conclusion.

I did a massive planting the other day with a bunch of stem plants (Rotala, Cardamine, Ludwigia), a couple crypts and a dense carpet of glosso covering about 70% of the area. When I checked the ammonia level this morning it was in the middle ranges, but definately still detecting ammonia. I also forgot to mention there has been mid-range Nitrite readings this whole time.

I even used a fully established Aquaclear 20 packed full with biomedia and it still hasn't "cycled" yet. This is day number 11 with the Aquasoil and high ammonia. Would a 50% water change help the situation or should I just let the bacteria do their job? There is no livestock in the tank still. Just some snails.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-30-2006, 01:03 AM
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I'm glad you are using a salicylate ammonia test kit. That eliminates the "chasing you tail" situations.

What's the pH of your water? Ammonia becomes ammonium in acidic conditions and is not nearly deadly as ammonia is. Ammonium is most aquatic plants favorite choice of nitrogen. If your tank's pH is less than 7 and you have a good many plants, you should be OK.

To help with nitrite poisoning and fish; add aquarium salt to your water. From what I remember, the salt blocks the nitrite from getting through the fish's gills. I believe you add the recommended amount that's on the box. But, you said you just have some snails in there now.

You can add Seachem's Stability or Marineland's Bio-Spira if you need to speed the cycling up some. I use the Stability product. I works for me. I believe I saw a long debate over the two recently.

I wouldn't do any water changes until the ammonia and nitrite are 0 and you are only finding nitrate present unless your snails are stressing out.

Since you just added a wad of plants, thinks should be OK very soon.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-01-2006, 06:51 AM
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Many recommend doing some fairly significant water changes with Aqua Soil at first, in the 50% range. Tom Barr suggests a little Zeolite to take up the ammonia present in early Aqua Soil tanks. And if the water colors like black tea too much, a little activated carbon will help clear it up. Things will settle down pretty soon, regardless. The real problem is if you want to hurry it up to re-introduce your fish. That's when the zeolite is the solution. That big planting will certainly help too.





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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-01-2006, 09:46 PM
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Last Sunday, I did a substrate change on my 31G. I changed gravel to Flourite. I took out all the fish and put them in a container. Once I finished changing the substrate, I add the water back in, add some Zeo-Carb into the filter. I put the fish and plants back in. I checked ammonia, it was very very low, not harmful to the fish at all. I also checked nitrite, it was very low too, so I don't have to worry about them. I think the Zeo-Carb will solve your problem. Also, you should add some Bio media into the filter.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-01-2006, 09:54 PM
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Actually doing 2x a week 50-70% water changes are what I suggest, zeolite if you are too lazy to do water changes etc.

Regards,
Tom Barr




Regards,
Tom Barr
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-04-2006, 05:37 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the help everyone.

Day 16 now the ammonia level has dropped significantly, but it still showing a small amount. Nitrite is in the lower detectable readings now too. About 0.5ppm if I trust the color chart. And Nitrate is climbing to detectable levels.

I haven't done a water change since initial setup with the aquasoil because I wanted to watch this progress. But I will be doing a 50% change this afternoon. If the chemistry looks decent tomorrow morning I think it will be time to add back in my Neon Tetras.

The plants look "ok." I have a crypt that doesn't look too healthy though. It has plenty of Nitrogen for sure. Plenty of Carbon. I've been adding a healthy amount of Potassium everyday. And traces every once in a while. No Phosphate however. The leaves on the crypt are a little "crinkly" looking and have holes. Newer growth is also off color. Normally this plant is a nice "pale" green. But the newer growth is kind of transparent and/or reddish.

I hope putting the fish back in here gets things going right again.
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-04-2006, 07:03 PM
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I added my aquasoil this weekend and after about 5 imeadiate water changes (water too cloudy to see anything int he tank ) I tested for amonia the next day and it was still around 4ppm! I seeded the filter with biomedia from another canister on my community tank.

I moved some plants today and I can't see into the water again, so I will probably have to drain it and change 2-3 more times then re-does again today. This stuff clouds up even worse than flourite! At least after the flourite is settled I don't get any clouding when I move plants around. I guess I'm just not elite enough to use this substrate successfully. I have not had any issues like this with Flourite or Eco.
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