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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
my ammonia level as per test kit is 8ppm













































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































My ammonia levels are through the roof, my fish appear to be fine and im not sure if my tank needs a water change or not, my lfs says no way, that the ammonia should return to zero???? the ammonia levels are not getting their fast enough i am freakin out, Nitrate 0, Nitrite 0, ammonia is 8.0ppm, when i started this tank i used all the tank bubblies for ph and stability before adding fish and then seachem stabilty for seven days upon adding them, Checking the ammonia levels daily watching the spike well its spiked and not coming down so I resorted to using Kordon plus detox, to keep from the fish alive, thank full all are alive...... What am I doing wrong???? tomorrow im going to get plants to help...I am lost??? Please help
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I do not have any used media, on the water changes my lfs said not to do it I take it they where wrong thanks I will do a fifty percent tonite why is ammonia so high and nitrite at zero the seachem ammonia alert thing i am using so the ammonia is less than .002 ppm but like you saw the sample says 8ppm
 

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I don't know what is ammonia alert thing...
Did lfs gave any explanation as to why a 8ppm ammonia is safe for fish and a water change is not required?
This level is quite toxic to your bacteria as well and you might end up with a "stalled cycle"
 

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This same thing happened to me. Ammonia skyrocketed to 8.00 PPM and stayed that way for a week (the ammonia test started turning a dark blue instead of green), so I did a complete 100 % water change and started from scratch. The very next day I started showing Nitrate readings. I think the beneficial bacteria had started building up but with the ammonia spike that high, it stalled the cycle. I had to completely start over with new water, but it worked for me. I highly suggest water changes, if you don't want to do 100% thats understandable, but you definitely want to try and get the ammonia level below 2.0 at least, preferably below 1 or even .5.
 

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You used chemicals.

those chemicals may have locked up the ammonia so the 8ppm is safe(r) then free ammonia.

The seachem ammonia dot only measures the free ammonia so if it shows low ammonia your tank is safe.

As does the seachem ammonia multi test test kit which measures free and total ammonia.

The locked ammonia from the chemicals actually tests as ammonia on the standard test kits like the API test kit in your picture. Then danger is people test ammonia, add chemicals, still test ammonia and repeat. The chemicals also lock up oxygen so any fish present can suffocate showing the same symptoms as ammonia poisoning.

I would follow the procedures in the link in my signature. Add fast growing plants like anacharis, stop all chemical treatments, stop all feedings and let the plants condition the tank but a week or two. Then start by adding 1 fish and not feeding for a week. Then add more fish and start feeding a single flake per day.

my .02
 

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Discussion Starter #7
today I have ammonia 2.0 ppm nitrite 0 ppm and nitrate at 5.0 ppm did a 10% water change last night checked today at 6 pm The seachem alert still shows zero ppm I take it i'm fine for now does it appear my tank is cycling,.,..,. or cycled,.,,..,..or stalled
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
As for today I did a 25%+/- water change last night 25 gallons of distilled water Ice storm kept me from getting plants today at 6 pm I checked water conditions they are ammonia 2.0ppm, nitrite 0 ppm nitrate 5 ppm.... My local fish store is operated by a marine biologist he told me the ammonia and nitrite should both spike and then go down it would take time use seachem stability and add fish hardy ones, being stubborn I put my big dogs in their or priced fish, My fish appear fine I added a uv sterilizer i used before in another aquarium is my tank cycling correctly now? is it stalled? or is it complete?

Disregard first post
 

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Seachem (Prime's maker) claims that checking ammonia with Nessler's reagent (API test) gives false results because the pH must be brought to 12-14 range (maybe that's what Bottle nr 1 is for). At that pH level, all ammonia is in the free form: NH3 (toxic). Prime is a reducer, it turns NH3 into NH4+ (ammonium, less toxic). Same thing would have happen to NH3 if the tank water pH is less than 7.
Seachem Prime does not remove NH3, it just make it NH4, less toxic, still available for plants or bacteria (if there are any...) to grab.
My question is: what happen to NH4 after 24 hours when Prime dissipates (according to their own site) if the pH is above 7?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
What do I got now from my results

Seachem (Prime's maker) claims that checking ammonia with Nessler's reagent (API test) gives false results because the pH must be brought to 12-14 range (maybe that's what Bottle nr 1 is for). At that pH level, all ammonia is in the free form: NH3 (toxic). Prime is a reducer, it turns NH3 into NH4+ (ammonium, less toxic). Same thing would have happen to NH3 if the tank water pH is less than 7.
Seachem Prime does not remove NH3, it just make it NH4, less toxic, still available for plants or bacteria (if there are any...) to grab.
My question is: what happen to NH4 after 24 hours when Prime dissipates (according to their own site) if the pH is above 7?
My PH is 7.4
 

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Ya thats why prime doesn't solve the problem it stalls it, to be honest it is intended to treat city water. They added the ammonia properties to help sell product. Yeah its nice to have a bit of buffer to help your filter out but its just a crutch.
 

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Your ammonia dot is still showing 0 ammonia. Stop all ammonia treatements. stop all water changes to reduce the ammonia.

Add the plants.

And watch the ammonia come down with a possible nitrate increase.

And a ph increase as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
As of yesterday nitrite still 0ppm seachem alert still shows 0ppm free ammonia, nitrate 5.0ppm ammonia 4 ppm added lots of water sprite, fish are still very healthy, slowed their feeding pattern down, got lots of waste out of tank, and im thinking about gradually increasing the temp in the tank to 84 degrees, what do you guys think?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The guys at the LFS told me they have never seen ammonia that high with no trace of nitrite and just a smidge of nitrate so i let them sample the water, they got the same results... The stressed i should use Seachem stabilty Not Prime because it appears I have new tank syndrome...... Any thoughts?
 

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The guys at the LFS told me they have never seen ammonia that high with no trace of nitrite and just a smidge of nitrate so i let them sample the water, they got the same results... The stressed i should use Seachem stabilty Not Prime because it appears I have new tank syndrome...... Any thoughts?

You have a planted tank with the seachem ammonia dot showing no ammonia but the api test kit showing 4ppm ammonia.

My conclusion is that all the ammonia is locked.

I would basically do nothing. Add no chemicals. No water changes. No fish added. and no food being added.

the 4ppm ammonia locked up will be released feeding the plants with no free ammonia spike.

then after the ammonia comes down (bout a week) start very light feedings of the fish.

At that point you should be well on your way to a more normal mature tank operation wise.

my .02
 

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Discussion Starter #16
If you could look at my aquarium, this is the one that is called Central american monsters can i go that long not feeding these fish?
 

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If you could look at my aquarium, this is the one that is called Central american monsters can i go that long not feeding these fish?
Yes.

fish in the wild sometimes go for weeks with no food.

my .02
 

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Did you pop open the filter and check for bacteria? Also with the above recommendation I would turn off the UV, untill you have things under control.
 

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I have a 10g gallon tank running empty (no fish) for few months now. To keep it cycled I add 8 drops of pure ammonia (Old Country) every few days or when I remember. By the next day, all ammonia is gone. I don't check NO2 or NO3 but change water weekly.
Today I took a sample from this tank to make sure ammonia is 0. I added 8 drops ammonia like usual and took a sample. I added 20 drops (1 ml) "locker" Prime and took another sample. Checked ammonia in both and guess what? Same 4 ppm reading, no difference.
Locked or unlocked, ammonia is there.
Prime works for cloramines as well (often found in city water) by breaking them into ammonia and chlorine. Chlorine is then split into chloride and ammonia, well, locked into a complex for about 24-48 hours. For the amount of chloramines found in city water, 2 drops of Prime per gallon seems effective. But 4 ppm ammonia is no match for Prime at regular dose.
 
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