Ammonia In Tap Water = Unbalanced Tank - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-25-2015, 06:20 PM Thread Starter
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Lightbulb Ammonia In Tap Water = Unbalanced Tank

For some reason I have ammonia in my tap water, and when I do water changes it throws the balance of my tank off. First I get ammonia spike, then nitrite spike, then nitrate (not a big deal I have a lot of plants).

To eradicate this I have been experimenting with "tank buddies" Ammonia Clear tabs during water changes. I use Tetra water conditioner which does not remove ammonia, if I switch to Seachem Prime will that solve my issues??
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-25-2015, 07:53 PM
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It might be chloramine.


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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-25-2015, 07:59 PM
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Prime does not remove ammonia, it temporarily detoxify it so your filtration can take it out. Try doing smaller water changes so your filtration can take out all the ammonia before prime wear off (24-48 hrs)
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-25-2015, 08:29 PM Thread Starter
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Using test strips (I know I am waiting for the delivery of my API kit) the tap water shows "stress" but the water from my cycled tank shows yellow which is completely clear of ammonia.

I have never even tried Prime yet to see if it helps on large water changes, I try to stay with 40% on changes. I assume Tetra water conditioner does not convert ammonia? Prime should also provide the slime coat for fish that my Tetra does right??


On a side note without starting another thread...I am having a Nitrite spike issue in one of my tanks. All my tanks have riparium planter baskets hung at the top but this tank is the only one I put Osmocote Plus in between the clay substrate, not a lot but maybe 10 pieces. Would this be the cause of Nitrite spikes in this tank? My bio-bacteria just can not seem to keep up with the Nitrite:
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-04-2015, 07:19 AM Thread Starter
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I got my API test kit, I also got my Prime. The label answered my question "provides slime coat"

Regarding the high nitrites I removed that hanger with the Osmocote, I did an 80% water change and the next day it was back through the roof. I did a 50% water change every day for 3 days and still it kept going through the roof, as if its the Osmocote in the substrate (hanger still out of tank). I added the Prime and the nitrite leveled right down I am not sure if it is coincidence or the Prime working.

Comparing the Prime to Jungle Ammonia Clear tabs, is that all these tabs were essentially doing is detoxifying the ammonia?? Says they also remove chlorine and chloramine which if I understand correctly can cause inaccurate ammonia test readings??

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-04-2015, 08:10 AM
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Yes these products can result in a false positive reading. As Prime only detoxifies ammonia, not removes it, the ammonia is still present but is now harmless to your fish. You will register an ammonia reading but you can ignore it.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-04-2015, 08:16 AM Thread Starter
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Thats not really what I was looking for, because my problem was before these products that is what they were trying to band-aid.

Prime makes the ammonia easier to be converted by my bacteria, I am wondering if the tablets also converted or cleared? Would they do anything without bacteria present?
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-04-2015, 08:42 AM
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To answer your question another way, yes, you understand correctly. The presence of chloramine can cause inaccurate ammonia test readings. That would explain why your tank was registering an ammonia reading even before you used Prime. For those reading that don't know, chloramine is chlorine + ammonia combined. The test reacts to the ammonia present in chloramine.

Will the ammonia be taken up if there is no bacteria present? Soon after an ammonia source is introduced, nitrifying bacteria begin to flourish and build in numbers progressively. The ammonia from chloramine won't last long. In fact, you'd have to add more ammonia to meet demand pretty quickly. Fishless cycle = regular addition of ammonia to around 5ppm. This eventually requires daily dosing.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-04-2015, 06:06 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you, I did not realize the bacteria can form on its own without adding a bacteria start-up blend. I was not aware of the composition of chloramine!

Last edited by Teebo; 12-05-2015 at 05:15 AM. Reason: .
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