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But I've run across the chlorine + ammonia/organic substances = chloramine numerous times, to the point where I was under the perception that it was pretty much common knowledge. If this is wrong, well, it wouldn't be the first time that public perception was 180off of what was supported by data. If you have a link or anything explaining this, I'd appreciate it.
Free chlorine with ammonia/organic substances will result in chloramine.

However, in tap water, unless the ammonia is added during the water treatment process, where chlorine concentrations are high, chloramines will likely not form (in any reasonably large amounts).

For example, if you were to take your (presumably) chlorinated tap water and mix it with ammonia, it is true that chloramine would probably form. But the number of molecules that would form would be negligible, since you do not have ideal reaction conditions. For our (the hobbyist's) intents and purposes, no chloramine would be formed.

As for the salt vs. gaseous chlorine; the former is more expensive than the latter :) In addition, hypochlorite salts are a pain to store, since they are unstable, and release chlorine gas, rusting anything metal within a 1-2 foot radius.

On a side note, I find it ironic my chemistry minor gets more of a workout than my microbiology specialization in this hobby :flick:
 

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Darkblade48>

thanks for the explanation. I'm guessing the reason I encountered that so often was the classic bit of exaggerating dangers 'to be on the safe side' . After a few iterations, the perceived risk/danger can get ridiculously disproportionate.

huh, I just sort of assumed salts would be easier/cheaper, so that's interesting at least.
 
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