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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello All, I have a 150 gallon take that has been set up for about 5-6 weeks. I had it up and running for a little over 2 weeks with live plants all levels were great, bacterial bloom began and I added 6 juveniles. Left them for a week and all was good did a 25% water change and I added 12 more. All was good again so I did another 25% water change and added another 12. A day or so later the ammonia was a bit higher but didn't seem that strange with the added bodies so I did another 25% water change. From the front the water looks great, if you look at the tank long ways you can see a greenish tint. I am running a Fluval FX6 cannister filter along with a 13watt UV filter. I have a bubble wall along the entire back wall so I feel like I have plenty of aeration and current but open to suggestion. I have 30 2" juveniles in the tank and the levels right now are as follows.

PH 7.4
Ammonia - 3.5
Nitrite - 1.0
Nitrate - 10.0

My tap water ammonia is about 1.5, so water changes with that may not be a huge help.

No fish lost at this point and everyone seems to be happy and healthy. Swimming strong and eating like horses. I would like to keep it that way so I look very forward to hearing your feedback. I can upload a photo of the tank if that would be helpful.

Thank you very much in advance.
 

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Your tank is not cycled...you would have had to add ammonia to the empty tank to start things. So your cycle did not start until you added fish...THEY are adding the ammonia. Ammonia and nitrite are toxic to fish. They may not die...at least not immediately, but harm is being done.

You need to keep the ammonia under 1ppm and the nitrate as well. You are not going to be able to use your tap water for partial water changes. What does your water authority have to say about the 1.5 ppm of ammonia in your drinking water?

For now, use bottled water for changes and seek another source until your tap water is corrected.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Honestly never tested our tap water until ammonia in my tank was an issue and I read someone else make the point that if the tap water is plant treated it may have levels of ammonia. I know that I have to get those levels down, I am asking how. You guys definately have way more knowledge in this space.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Been doing some research and reading a lot. I know I buggered this up and I am trying to get help to fix it. Would this be a viable option in your opinions?

Start with adding Prime daily to at least make the ammonia harmless, turning it into ammonium, and stop hurting the fish. I say daily because as I understand it Prime only lasts 1-3 days depending on conditions. Along with that do water changes and treat my tap water with Safe which removes ammonia, thus adding no ammonia in the water changes and hopefully truly lower the number water change by water change. Once I get the number down to zero and the cycle continues I would continue to treat my tap water with Safe to ensure I am not adding ammonia.
 

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There was an error in my post...I said nitrate was toxic, which is true if concentrations are above 40ppm, but I meant to say nitrite with an "i" which is toxic at any level.

I know that prime and other chemicals can reduce ammonia and nitrite...but I don't think they can totally negate it. Else everyone would do what you came up with. Kudos for logic and innovation on your idea.

I also don't know that you can add those chemicals daily without impact. You could check with the manufacturer.

Ideally you would return the fish until you have your water figured out...is that an option?

Hope you are drinking and cooking with bottled water.
 

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I wouldn't bother with the Prime if you already have Safe. It's the same thing except Safe is a more concentrated version (therefore cheaper).
I would be doing daily partial water changes using Safe as the water conditioner.
I would also re test the tap water for ammonia to make sure your test results are correct.
Also, as D.J said, if it's possible to return the fish temporarily, I would consider that as well.
 

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So...you say those fish are doing well???? Wonder what would happen if you stayed out of the tank and let it take care of itself????? Sounds like it is cycling and you may be doing more harm than good with your tap water. Feed at a minimum to keep waist down while this problem is going on. Hope things get better.
 

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DJRansome said:
Your tank is not cycled...you would have had to add ammonia to the empty tank to start things. So your cycle did not start until you added fish...THEY are adding the ammonia. Ammonia and nitrite are toxic to fish. They may not die...at least not immediately, but harm is being done.

You need to keep the ammonia under 1ppm and the nitrate as well. You are not going to be able to use your tap water for partial water changes. What does your water authority have to say about the 1.5 ppm of ammonia in your drinking water?

For now, use bottled water for changes and seek another source until your tap water is corrected.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but If op's water is treated with chloramine, it will have ammonia in it straight out of the tap right? I'm just throwing that out there because it may never be corrected if that is the case. I could be wrong though, I have never had to deal with chloramine.
 

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Others might need to chime in, but I don't think tap water treated with chloramine would be 3.5ppm. I have a well, so no experience here.
 

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Webbdogg33 said:
My tap water ammonia is about 1.5, so water changes with that may not be a huge help.
Just to clarify, the OP's tap ammonia is not 3.5 ppm, it is 1.5 ppm.

To the OP, I would retest your tap water and be sure to follow the test kit instructions exactly, including monitoring the test time.
 

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Deeda said:
Webbdogg33 said:
My tap water ammonia is about 1.5, so water changes with that may not be a huge help.
Just to clarify, the OP's tap ammonia is not 3.5 ppm, it is 1.5 ppm.

To the OP, I would retest your tap water and be sure to follow the test kit instructions exactly, including monitoring the test time.
I am aware of this, I was just saying that I doubt the tap water is contributing to a 3.5ppm ammonia reading in the aquarium.
 
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