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Old 02-18-2013, 07:31 AM   #1 
medusae
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How often can I do water changes to regulate high ammonia levels?

Hello all!

I haven't posted in forever, but sadly my fish has been sick for probably two months now. He looks horrible, and I've been doing absolutely everything I can to help. It always seems to be something else. :( Anyway, i did an ammonia check yesterday and it was around 2.0ppm for some reason! I quickly hustled and did a 25% water change, and when that was still high I went ahead and did another 25% change immediately after. The levels are still reading 1.0ppm. I have no idea why this is doing this but I do know I need to get this down!
By the way, nitrites are 0ppm and pH is 7.4.

Can I do another water change today? If so, how much?

P.S. I will do another post later today with pictures and more details. I just want to figure out how to solve this ammonia problem ASAP!

Thank you!
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Old 02-18-2013, 07:59 AM   #2 
Crowntails
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I'd do 25% water changes everyday and use prime. It helps reduce ammonia.
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Old 02-18-2013, 08:04 AM   #3 
medusae
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Thanks so much for the response! I'm really freaking out a bit
I use Seachem Neutral Regulator. I've read that it also removes ammonia, but does Prime work a little better for this purpose?
I've also just recently started using Seachem NR for this tank. Could this be causing a new kind of cycling and resulting in the high ammonia?
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Old 02-18-2013, 08:52 AM   #4 
shellieca
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I'd do 50% water changes to get the ammonia down. Prime doesn't remove ammonia it detoxifies it for 24-48hrs which gives a cycled tank time to process out the ammonia. Are you testing with strips or a liquid test kit? Have you recently changed the filter media? Added anything to the tank? It seems odd you would have such a high spike in ammoia.
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Old 02-18-2013, 09:29 AM   #5 
medusae
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shellieca View Post
I'd do 50% water changes to get the ammonia down. Prime doesn't remove ammonia it detoxifies it for 24-48hrs which gives a cycled tank time to process out the ammonia. Are you testing with strips or a liquid test kit? Have you recently changed the filter media? Added anything to the tank? It seems odd you would have such a high spike in ammoia.
I'm not using Prime I've been using Neutral Regulator. Does that do the same thing? I've always been confused what their difference was.
I am testing with a liquid test kit, and I changed the filter media about a week ago. I also changed out the gravel and switched the plastic plant for a silk plant.
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Old 02-18-2013, 09:45 AM   #6 
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If your ammonia was 2ppm, a 25% change will only bring it down to 1.5ppm. A further 25% change would only bring it down to 1.1ppm, so that makes sense based on your measurements.

What size tank is the betta in? Any other inhabitants?
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Old 02-18-2013, 09:59 AM   #7 
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Your BB lives on the filter media, gravel, decorations, anything it can stick to it will so when you removed those thing you had a ammonia spike cause of you lost so much BB. I have never heard of Neutral Regulator what does it say on the bottle does it detox the ammonia, nitrite and nitrate ? Prime does all that for up to 48 hours that why so many of us use and love it. Your best bet is to keep testing and doing the water changes as your tank will have to cycle again.

Sorry you little guy is not doing well.
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Old 02-18-2013, 10:00 AM   #8 
medusae
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He is in a 2.5 hex aquarium, and he has only lived alone.
I went ahead and did a ~45% water change using the neutral regulator. For some reason it occurred to me to add a splash of tetra Safe Start last minute since it contains some healthy bacteria which i supposed to aid in ammonia. I now realize that may have been entirely counter intuitive sine the Neutral Regulator is supposed to get rid of the ammonia completely. Did I just make a huge mistake? :/
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Old 02-18-2013, 10:03 AM   #9 
medusae
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Perseusmom View Post
Your BB lives on the filter media, gravel, decorations, anything it can stick to it will so when you removed those thing you had a ammonia spike cause of you lost so much BB. I have never heard of Neutral Regulator what does it say on the bottle does it detox the ammonia, nitrite and nitrate ? Prime does all that for up to 48 hours that why so many of us use and love it. Your best bet is to keep testing and doing the water changes as your tank will have to cycle again.

Sorry you little guy is not doing well.
Neutral Regulator is also a product of SeaChem.
I found the following information here: http://www.seachem.com/Products/prod...Regulator.html

Neutral Regulator™ adjusts pH to neutral (pH 7.0) from either a low or high pH and maintains it there. It softens water by precipitating calcium and magnesium while removing any chlorine, chloramine, or ammonia. The use of Neutral Regulator™ makes other conditioning unnecessary. To lower pH below 7.0 use Neutral Regulator™ with Acid Regulator™ (or Discus Buffer™). To raise pH above 7.0 use with Alkaline Regulator™. All of these products will enhance and stabilize the freshwater aquarium environment.

Contains phosphate buffers and conditioning agents. Safe for all freshwater fish acclimated to neutral pH.

In addition to Neutral Regulator’s™ superior buffering capacity, it will remove chlorine and chloramine, bind ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate, stimulate slime coat production, and buffer the pH to 7.0.
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Old 02-18-2013, 10:14 AM   #10 
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When you dumped the gravel, the filter, and the plant all at once, you dumped all of your BB as the previous poster said - those are the places the BB live.

I don't think I'd use the "Regulator" product anymore, as I have found that those chemicals that alter pH just add a bunch of unnecessary chemicals to your water.

I would stick with the SafeStart if you have it or get some Prime. Use it regularly with water changes until your bacteria has a chance to re-establish, and it will help keep your water safe.
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