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help high ammonia

Discussion in 'Tropical Fish Emergencies' started by aquarium3, Jan 9, 2019.

  1. aquarium3

    aquarium3 New Member

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    I recently cleaned my filter with tap water treated with API stress coat and now I have ammonia in my tank did the API stress coat not dechlorimate the water and killed my beneficial bacteria. What should I do.
     
  2. Colin_T

    Colin_T Member

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    reduce feeding to 2-3 times per week and do a 75% water change and gravel clean the substrate any day you have an ammonia or nitrite reading above 0.
     
  3. aquarium3

    aquarium3 New Member

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    I just did a large water change and tested my nitrites and they are 0. Do you think the stress coat did not dechlorinate my water.
     
  4. Colin_T

    Colin_T Member

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    It depends on how you made the water up before cleaning the filter in it. Dechlorinators need to be mixed thoroughly into the water so they can come in contact with all of the chlorine/ chloramine in the water. If the water and dechlorinator is not mixed sufficiently, then chlorine/ chloramine can remain and affect fish and bacteria.

    Water companies can increase the chlorine/ chloramine levels at any time and regularly do this after working on the pipes or during very hot weather. They don't normally tell customers about this and you can add a normal dose of dechlorinator and it might not get rid of all the chlorine/ chloramine in the water.

    It also depends on how long the filter has been running for. If the filter is less than 4 weeks old, the bacteria might not have been well attached and you washed them off.

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    The best way to clean filter material is to wash them out in a bucket of aquarium water. When they are reasonably clean, wash them in a second bucket of aquarium water and then put the filter media in the aquarium. Wash the filter case and impeller assembly under tap water and then put the filter back together and get it running. Dechlorinate some tap water and top the tank up.

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    The best way to dechlorinate tap water is to fill up a clean fish only bucket with water, add enough dechlorinator to treat the water in the bucket and aerate vigorously for 30 minutes before adding it to the tank. If you don't want to wait 30 minutes then make sure you aerate it for at least 2 minutes.

    Aerating for 30 minutes or more will allow all the chlorine/ chloramine to be removed as well as getting the dissolved gasses back to normal levels in the water. Tap water is under pressure and some or all of the gasses can be forced out of the water. This can leave the water without sufficient oxygen for the fish to breath. Aerating the water for 30 minutes (or longer) will allow the nitrogen, oxygen and carbon dioxide to get back to normal levels before it goes in the tank.

    Aerating the water for 2 minutes should allow the dechlorinator to come into contact with all the chlorine/ chloramine and remove that, but it won't necessarily get the dissolved gasses back into equilibrium.
     

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