Petals asked in PetsFish · 8 years ago

Ammonia in tap water?

Okay, here's my problem. I have an uncycled aquarium and have ammonia in my tap water. I use Prime water conditioner, and I know it will neutralize the ammonia. But everything I have read online is that the biological filter removes that ammonia within a few hours. I don't have that biological filter how do I take care of this ammonia. I have a 15 gallon tank with one fantail goldfish. I have established bacteria from another tank, but it's not cycled yet. I recently transferred him from my 3 gallon cycled tank a week ago, and at that time put all rocks and decorations in the bottom of this tank to aid in cycling. But I have had to treat for ich so I have been doing massive water changes, so the cycle has been slowed way down, needless to say.


Yes, I know what a biological filter point is mine is not established yet. So how do I get rid of this ammonia? I've been using bottled water but that is very costly.

3 Answers

  • 8 years ago
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    How did you determine that ammonia is in your tap water?

    What you may be picking up with test kits is the left overs between Prime and Chloromines. Chloromines are chlorine bonded to ammonia. Prime breaks that bond to get rid of the chlorine, but leaves the ammonia, which is converted to ammonium.

    The ammonia will eventually be processed by the biofilter and be a non issue once it develops. In the mean time, there's not a lot you can do.

    The only way to remove the ammonia is through some kind of ion exchange. Products like zeolite will remove it... however, it will slow down cycling and it will raise your total dissolved solids, which can stress fish. It also has a very finite lifespan

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  • 8 years ago

    The best approach to 'clone' the cycle from one tank to another is to use the filter from the old 3g tank in the new 15g tank along with the higher capacity filter used in the 15g. This assumes the 3g is now empty of fish.

    Using the decorations and rocks might help but most of the bacteria reside in the filter.

    When doing this you might experience a bacteria bloom for a few days but that should disappear. Once this happens remove the old filter and let the new one do the job on the 15g tank.

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  • 8 years ago

    "Biological filter" means your filter has completed the nitrogen cycle and has enough beneficial bacteria in it to convert ammonia into nitrate.

    Your filter is the "biological filter" when it is cycled.

    Keep using Prime for partial water change every day or every other day. It turns ammonia into ammonium for up to 48 hours, which can minimize the damage to your fish. You can get Tetra SafeStart to help speed up the cycle.

    Next time, do a fishless cycle.

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