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Old 02-03-2013, 09:15 PM   #1 
Lelu74
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Question Ammonia in tap water - water changes question

I am currently cycling a 5.5 Gallon planted tank with one Betta fish in it, filtered with zeolite and carbon. Substrate does not affect ph of aquarium (Carib Sea Tahitian moon sand). Tested with API Master Kit. Heated to 76-78 farenheight

Tank Water parameters: 0.25 Ammonia
Ammonia - 0.25 ppm
pH - 8.2
nitrates and nitrites - 0


Tap water (treated and rested for 24 hours - city uses chlorine not chlorimine)
Ammonia - 0.25 a (looks a little more green than aquarium water after four days)
pH 7.8



How often should I do a water change given the fact that I cannot dilute the amonia with water changes . I've also tested bottled water and it contains ammonia and has high ph (spring water). This is a problem in our area.

Also Pepsi's fins were torn by the filter (baffle came off and he got stuck in there). Is there any point to medicating him or is it better to just let him be. I am hesitant to add the salt because of the plants. (Corkscrew val, anubias nana, and dwarf saggitaria.)

Please advise
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Old 02-03-2013, 09:24 PM   #2 
shellieca
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Some may disagree with me but .25 ammonia while not great is OK. once your tank is cycled & your BB is built up there should be no problem with the .25. I would continue with the regular water changes, if you're using Prime as a water conditioner it'll make the water safe until the BB can do its job once there's enough BB. If you'd like you can dose a little Prime every other day while cycling. Test the water before dosing, of your ammo or nitrItes are higher than .25 do a 50% water change. I wouldn't worry about the Ph. Hope this makes sense & helps.
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Old 02-04-2013, 07:56 AM   #3 
Myates
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A good conditioner should take care of your problem.. it works instantly, always dose for full volume of tank when doing water changes.

You should be doing a small water change (10-25% -ish) whenever you see any ammonia in the water - up to .25ppm won't harm your betta, but being exposed to it for a long period of time can cause harm. Cycling you will want to be doing frequent changes every time you see the ammonia..

Torn fins just need clean water - so by doing frequent water changes every time you see ANY ammonia, it will also help keep his fins clean and clear of bacteria/rot.
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Old 02-04-2013, 12:11 PM   #4 
Lelu74
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Thanks for all the advice. I'm doing a weekly 50% water change and also watching for any ammonia spike over .25ppm (I will do another water change). Should I use RO water since I have such high ph (alkaline hard water) or will that cause too much of a ph fluctuation.
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Old 02-04-2013, 01:23 PM   #5 
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Exclamation

So I did a 50% water change. Pepsi is a little lethargic (he's actually chilling out not swimming around like crazy) and sulky after the water change.
Ammonia levels are now .5 ppm (after an hour of sitting in the tank) but my ph has decreased to 7.8. Is there anything I can do or is it best to just wait and watch.
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Old 02-04-2013, 06:19 PM   #6 
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Just leave the pH to do it's own thing...

In another day or two do another small water change (roughly 10%) - you are cycling your tank, which means multiple changes per week because of the ammonia build up. Every time you see ammonia, do a small water change, regardless if it is .5 or .26ppm.

Don't need RO water - your pH is fine. Mess with it = stressed/dead betta. Let it be, it will do it's natural thing and your fish will be just fine. No reason to use RO water, it's costly and it can lack the proper minerals that you find in tap water.
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Old 02-04-2013, 07:50 PM   #7 
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With ammo at .5 I'd do a 50% to cut that in half. Since you have .25 in your tap right now your ammo will build up faster until your BB is able to do its job.
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Old 02-04-2013, 09:19 PM   #8 
Lelu74
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Thanks Myates. I'll leave the water alone or a few days, and keep doing small changes so hopefully my ammonia won't increase after each one.

Shellieca - unfortuanately the water change I did today actually increased the ammonia. I know it's weird, but our water supply is finicky. Thanks for the advice.
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Old 02-05-2013, 08:00 AM   #9 
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It shouldn't increase after each change as long as you are dosing for full volume of the tank with water conditioner. Stuff works instantly..

What brand of conditioner are you using? Some, such as Prime, will turn ammonia into ammonium, which will test positive as ammonia.
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Old 02-14-2013, 06:43 PM   #10 
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Ammonia seems to have stabilized at between .0 to .25 except for when I do a water change it increses. I'm dosing with tetra aqua safe (in case there is chlorimide in the water). Thanks so much for your help.
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