Help! High ammonia levels. - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 22 Old 09-13-2012, 01:04 PM
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Have you checked the tap water on its own for ammonia,nitrite and nitrate? This is always wise to do, just so you know if anything may be coming in that way. Not suggesting it is here, but it is best to eliminate possibilities.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #12 of 22 Old 09-13-2012, 03:55 PM Thread Starter
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Have you checked the tap water on its own for ammonia,nitrite and nitrate? This is always wise to do, just so you know if anything may be coming in that way. Not suggesting it is here, but it is best to eliminate possibilities.
I haven't. I will after work today just to see. Haven't had trouble till now do didn't think of that.
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post #13 of 22 Old 09-13-2012, 07:28 PM Thread Starter
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Ok so today water is a lot more clear Nd tank readings are as follows. Ph 7.6ammonia 8 nitrates 5 nitrites 0. I'm sooo confused! I am about to do yet another water change, 50% this time with only water conditioner. I was unable to get to lfs & get live plants as I didn't get off work in time to get there. I'm about to the point I don't know what to do now. 😓anymore suggestions? I tested tap water & it is as follows. Ph 7.6 ammonia 0 nitrite 0 nitrate 0. Ugh.
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post #14 of 22 Old 09-13-2012, 08:34 PM
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Ok so today water is a lot more clear Nd tank readings are as follows. Ph 7.6ammonia 8 nitrates 5 nitrites 0. I'm sooo confused! I am about to do yet another water change, 50% this time with only water conditioner. I was unable to get to lfs & get live plants as I didn't get off work in time to get there. I'm about to the point I don't know what to do now. ��anymore suggestions? I tested tap water & it is as follows. Ph 7.6 ammonia 0 nitrite 0 nitrate 0. Ugh.
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I don't know what to suggest. I don't understand the ammonia at 8. Some of our experienced members may have suggestions, I'll PM a few that i think of.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #15 of 22 Old 09-13-2012, 08:38 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Byron. I read on some sites that ammolock can give you false ammonia readings so I'm really wondering if that's the case. With it being 8 for 2 days now I would think I wouldn't have ANY fish left. I am going to take your suggestion on the live plants though. So thanks for suggesting that. :)
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post #16 of 22 Old 09-13-2012, 08:55 PM
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Thanks Byron. I read on some sites that ammolock can give you false ammonia readings so I'm really wondering if that's the case. With it being 8 for 2 days now I would think I wouldn't have ANY fish left. I am going to take your suggestion on the live plants though. So thanks for suggesting that. :)
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This is where some other members will be helpful. I've never used this product so have no experience.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #17 of 22 Old 09-13-2012, 09:13 PM
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My suggestion although this may not be what you want to hear, is totally stop using the ammolock and do larger partial water changes. Get a water conditioner such as prime and use that instead of ammolock.

Ammolock does effect the efficiency of your filter and as such using too much of it will degrade the efficiency to the point the bacteria in the filter never reach a level able to convert the bioload in the tank.

Larger changes of 60-75% will allow the good bacteria to start converting the ammonia left over from the change.

What is your water pH?, alkaline water will cause the converted ammonium from using ammolock to revert back to ammonia very quickly. acidic water will not cause this change.
In alkaline water there is an excessive amount of Hydrogen and Oxygen negative ions, once ammolock converts the ammonia to ammonium, the ammonium gives off its Hydrogen Positive ion basically creating water and ammonia. The more the ammolock is used the more ammonia is being created.

Stop using the ammolock, do larger partial water and perhaps get a bubble wand or air stone to aid in gas exchange, monitor the tank for a week and see if anything changes, using prime though will help a bit.

Sorry for you situation and hope we can come up with a solution to help you.

10g Fry / Hospital / QT tank (as needed)

75g Saltwater Reef, Ocellaris Clownfish, Lyretail Antias (baby), Lemon damsel, Longtail Fairy Wrasse, purple dottyback, snails, crabs and a few LPS corals.

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post #18 of 22 Old 09-13-2012, 11:00 PM Thread Starter
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Ph is 7.6 with today's test. I have a water conditioner I use with all my water changes. Today I did a 50% change because I was afraid to do more, didn't know if would mess anything up basically. I don't mind doing the changes AT ALL as I just want to get it stabilized. I have a bubbler in there & have it turned up pretty high. Since didn't use the ammolock I wonder how long it takes to run out? I mean when would it not be detected anymore? I go to lfs tomorrow so if I need to get something else I can.
I am SURE you guys can help. I've read A LOT of things on this forum & I LOVE it! There are so many good things on here. I really appreciate ALL of you!
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post #19 of 22 Old 09-13-2012, 11:24 PM
For the most part, I agree with Tazman. I would keep doing 50% water changes using Prime every day or every other day for several days, then wait and keep testing. Something is stifling the development of nitrosomonas bacteria. I'm not certain it's the ammolock, but I too am suspicious of it and think you need to get it out of there. An alternative to the above would be a total tear down.
Note: do not mess with your filter/filter media until you get the N2 process stabilized.
Also, as Byron suggested, plants, rooted and/or floating can help by processing ammonia. I like Anacharis and have about 6 bunches floating free in my 60g.

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post #20 of 22 Old 09-13-2012, 11:43 PM Thread Starter
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Ok thanks. I really want to avoid a complete restart since I have fish in now & have nothing big enough or established to transfer them to. I will get some prime & plants tomorrow & retest & do another water change if needed. Thanks!! Will see what tomorrow holds.
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