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Old 05-16-2006, 03:56 PM   #1
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Ammonia Questions....

I have a 10 gal nano tank, with no fish in it and about 7 lbs of LR and LS base in it. It has been running for about 5 months. I have been doing bi weekly 25 % PWC and monitoring the water trying to get my nh3/nh4 and nitrates to drop.

I got the NO2 to drop to .05 ppm, but the NO3 wont drop below 50 ppm, even with regular water changes.

I have also been having problems with my ammonia, I can get my NH4 below .25 ppm.

I also think who ever makes the red sea test kits should never attempt to teach math. In the book it says to get the NH3, you take temp, ph and then find the % based on that and then the part after that is what gets me.

They say the formula is the "NH4ppm X the % of NH3 / 100" This really helps .

Anyone able to clarify the formula and tell me my toxic ammonia if:

NH4-.025
PH-8.4
Temp-79f

Is .035 NH3 correct?

Also, the SW water from my LFS has little to no nitrates.....bt it has .25 NH3 already in the water.....could my test kit be off, or are these normal numbers?
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Old 05-16-2006, 04:12 PM   #2
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Sounds to me like your tanks has not ever sufficiently cycled and that is why you are seeing these numbers. If there are no fish, there should be no ammonia, unless the liverock was not cured and that is the process that your tank is going through now. There has to be an ammonia source.
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Old 05-16-2006, 05:20 PM   #3
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i would varify those reading your test kit may be bad its rather hard to get 50ppm of NO3 when doing 25% weekly
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Old 05-16-2006, 05:27 PM   #4
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I would have to agree with Hara's advice. Does't sound like the tank is fully cycled and if the LR is the only thing in it and the readings are in fact accurate, then your LR isn't cured and that's what's giving you your high readings.

5 months however, throws me off. That doesn't add up either. Have you been introducing anything more during those 5 months? Or did you just put your LR in 5 months ago and leave it, other than testing the water now and then?
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Old 05-16-2006, 07:06 PM   #5
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Mrs Hara is right here that there has to be a source here. I would take a water sample to your LFS and get a second opinion first. At 7 Lbs you might not have enough LR. I would suggest at least 15 Lbs in a 10 gallon tank. Also where do you get you PWC water. If it is tap Then that could be a source also. I know where I am it has small amounts of ammonia in tap. Good luck checking it out.
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Old 05-16-2006, 10:37 PM   #6
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The water at the LFS is reading .025 NH3/NH4 right out of the jug, and it is RO/DI SW.

I am thinking my test may be inaccurate.

How good are the Red Sea Test Kits?

I added about 1 lb of small peices of LR about 10 days ago, but the water was the same before and after.

I think I am going to increase the regularity and size of the PWC's until I can get it low, and if it spikes after that, I will know there is a current problem.

It is so frustrating to try to do everything right, and still not be so wrong!
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Old 05-17-2006, 12:52 AM   #7
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I just use the "Saltwater Master Test Kit" and it works really well. You need to beef up the LR in that tank, also are there any power heads? What about mechincal filtration? Do you have a protein skimmer, and if so, have you turned it on yet?
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Old 05-17-2006, 12:08 PM   #8
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Yes, I have a skilter 250 hob, and the skimmer in it has been fortified with a limewood airstone, and is very effective at skimming the tank, I empty the cup once or twice a week.

I dont have any powerheads, but the water moves very well with just the skilter, the tank is only a 10 gal.


I think I am going to just add a fuge under the tank with as much LR as possible.
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Old 05-17-2006, 05:55 PM   #9
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Also do you have a skimmer that will remove the DOC out of your tank that will eventually turn to nitrates.
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Old 05-17-2006, 07:06 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by melosu58
Also do you have a skimmer that will remove the DOC out of your tank that will eventually turn to nitrates.
Im not sure the difference between what my skimmer will do versus what the skimmers you are talking about?

Mine skims pleanty of black crap out of my tank, so much so I have to empty the cup once a week, and it is full of black slime around the edge and brown water in the cup.

Is there a different type of skimmer I should be using? I thought with the limewood airstone upgrade my skimmer was pretty effective, even in its small size, since it is only a 10 gal tank.
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