High ammonia levels
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High ammonia levels

This is a discussion on High ammonia levels within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Well I have done two water changes in a row the past 2 days. I tested the water last night the levels were: Ph: ...

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Old 04-14-2011, 09:48 AM   #1
 
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High ammonia levels

Well I have done two water changes in a row the past 2 days.

I tested the water last night the levels were:
Ph: 6.8ppm
Nitrate: 15ppm
Nitrite: 0ppm
Ammonia: 8ppm

I have a feeling that can not be right. Ammonia that high would for sure cause some damage. The tank is well over a year old. I keep up on frequent water changes, it is a 55 gallon long. The past two days I took out the first day 25 gallon and yesterday I changes 10 gallons. I usually do 10 gallon water change every 5 days and a 50% water change every 3 weeks. I am treating for ick. I have the temp raised to 82, and using Ich Attack.

I do use ammonia lock in the tank. I also used the API Master Water Test Kit. I know ammonia lock makes the ammonia safe by processing it. But still a reading of 8ppm seems a bit to high. Could the test be wrong?

I have:
3 Angel Fish (medium)
2 Kissing Gouramis (small)
2 Opaline Gouramis (small)
1 KilliFish
6 Emerald Green Corys
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Old 04-14-2011, 10:33 AM   #2
 
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Originally Posted by Cassandra90 View Post
Well I have done two water changes in a row the past 2 days.

I tested the water last night the levels were:
Ph: 6.8ppm
Nitrate: 15ppm
Nitrite: 0ppm
Ammonia: 8ppm

I have a feeling that can not be right. Ammonia that high would for sure cause some damage. The tank is well over a year old. I keep up on frequent water changes, it is a 55 gallon long. The past two days I took out the first day 25 gallon and yesterday I changes 10 gallons. I usually do 10 gallon water change every 5 days and a 50% water change every 3 weeks. I am treating for ick. I have the temp raised to 82, and using Ich Attack.

I do use ammonia lock in the tank. I also used the API Master Water Test Kit. I know ammonia lock makes the ammonia safe by processing it. But still a reading of 8ppm seems a bit to high. Could the test be wrong?

I have:
3 Angel Fish (medium)
2 Kissing Gouramis (small)
2 Opaline Gouramis (small)
1 KilliFish
6 Emerald Green Corys

There is a similar thread. I also believe that the other person used Ammo-Lock. Ammo-Lock I believe changes the ammonia to Ammonium. The test kits reads both, however ammonium is not harmfull to fish.

Have any live plants? what is your filter? Does you tap water have ammonia?

other thread:
http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/f...h-alive-67785/

Last edited by TwinDad; 04-14-2011 at 10:47 AM.. Reason: add link for thread.
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Old 04-14-2011, 10:36 AM   #3
 
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Have any live plants? what is your filter? Does you tap water have ammonia?[/quote]

I have 6 live plants, which I trim the dead leaves as soon as possible. I have a aqua tech 30-60 gallon, I am planning on getting a second filter. I also have a undergravel filter. I have not tested my tap water, but I really don't think it has ammonia in it. I also leave my tap water sit for 24 hours with water conditioner in it before water changes.
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Old 04-14-2011, 11:08 AM   #4
 
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Have any live plants? what is your filter? Does you tap water have ammonia? I also leave my tap water sit for 24 hours with water conditioner in it before water changes.
What water conditioner?

I know in the majority of threads that people have issues Bryon asks people the parameters of their tap water. I think it's good to know. There was interesting information on a high PH thread about too much of a difference between tank PH and tap PH might be harmful on water changes with to much swing.

I didn't think my tap had ammonia in it either but somebody in a thread said to put tap in a jar and wait 24 hours, then test it. My PH went down from 7.8 to 7.6, and I noted about .5-1ppm ammonia.

My point is if you use a conditioner such as Prime, which converts ammonia to ammonium, your tests after a water change will read ammonia and you might might not know that your water change is what is making the levels still high after a water change. It's good to know the sources.

Last edited by TwinDad; 04-14-2011 at 11:25 AM..
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Old 04-14-2011, 11:14 AM   #5
 
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I will test the water today when I get home. I never really thought of testing it for ammonia, I have tested if for the Ph level. I know my Ph is fine, Angels usually need Ph from 5.8 to 7. I use Aqueon Water Conditioner. Thank you!
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Old 04-14-2011, 01:12 PM   #6
 
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A couple of issues.

First, your undergravel filter. Any chance it is clogged, or there may be something under the plate? Decaying anything will increase ammonia--dead snails, fish, plant leaves, detritus, organics.

With the pH below 7 the ammonia will be harmless ammonium. Test kits read ammonia/ammonium as ammonia, so if the pH is below 7 it is not an emergency, but the cause should still be ascertained since this is not normal or healthy.

Plants consume considerable ammonium (ammonia) so again with live plants having ammonia/ammonium showing on a test kit is cause for concern as it never should.

Is there any chance the pH may rise above 7? If the ammonia (as ammonium) is really 8ppm and the pH rises above 7, I can promise all fish in the tank will die quickly. Be careful with water changes if this could result (an increase in pH).

The Aqueon water conditioner will not handle ammonia, according to what I found on their website. This is only an issue if ammonia is present in the tap water of course, in which case a conditioner that detoxifies ammonia would be advisable for water changes.

Byron.
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Old 04-14-2011, 01:23 PM   #7
 
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There shouldn't be any thing under my UGF, I took it apart 2 weeks ago and cleaned under it. I have never had the Ph go above 7. It has always been about 6 to 6.8ppm.

I have added ammo-lock, which does convert the ammonia, so the test kit still reads ammonia though, right?
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Old 04-14-2011, 01:31 PM   #8
 
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Originally Posted by Cassandra90 View Post
There shouldn't be any thing under my UGF, I took it apart 2 weeks ago and cleaned under it. I have never had the Ph go above 7. It has always been about 6 to 6.8ppm.

I have added ammo-lock, which does convert the ammonia, so the test kit still reads ammonia though, right?
Yes. But with an acidic pH, I wuld not use the Ammo-lock. It may or may not affect things, I don't know how it works; but as it is not necessary, I myself would not use it in case there is some interference with the natural processes. I prefer to let nature deal with things.
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Old 04-14-2011, 01:34 PM   #9
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron View Post
Yes. But with an acidic pH, I wuld not use the Ammo-lock. It may or may not affect things, I don't know how it works; but as it is not necessary, I myself would not use it in case there is some interference with the natural processes. I prefer to let nature deal with things.
I will try that and see what will happen. Since I do have ich, I should be doing small daily water changes right? The ich has fallen off of the fish so it is in the gravel bed, each water change I syphon the gravel.
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Old 04-14-2011, 08:24 PM   #10
 
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Bryon,
I tested my water in the buckets that I have been letting sit out for 24 hours. The ammonia reads 00ppm for them, and the Ph is 7ppm.
Then I tested my tank again and the Ph has gone down to 6.5ppm and the ammonia levels went down a tad bit, to about 7ppm.
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