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Old 09-03-2003, 02:58 PM   #1
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Help, Ammonia trouble?

I saw a post with the same question a while back...I looked for it but I couldn't find it.

Anyway my tank is in the 3rd week of cycle right now and the ammonia levels have been consistant at about .25 to .50ppm. Nitrite levels are zero, and Nitrate is at 10ppm. SG at 1.024-1.025 Theres one yellow-tailed damsel and a few snails in the tank as well. I've done a few small water changes in the 3 weeks. Im using distilled water by the gallon from my local walmart for evaporation top off and water changes. Today I tested the plain distilled water and it had zero ammonia. So I mixed up a couple of gallons of distilled with Instant Ocean salt and tested it again for ammonia...now once the water has been mixed with salt the ammonia is .50ppm. How the hell is that? Does that mean the instant ocean salt mix has ammonia. And no wonder the ammonia levels are still high. Shouldn't there be zero ammonia with freshly mixed salt water. Im using clean 5 gal buckets to mix it up and I've used a few small boxes of the salt, so that would rule out a bad batch...right?
I have a 3 inches of live sand and 1 pound per gallon of live rock.
I don't know whats going on here...please help
Thanks
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Old 09-03-2003, 03:25 PM   #2
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I found the other post with the exact same questions/problems. Its by Ikawayam posted on aug 27. on page three right now.
So from what I gather from reading your responses to his post. it would seem this is a false test. As Im using aquarium pharmecuticals test kits too. They say for fresh and marine tanks. It does come with two color charts, and im not using the freshwater one. My readings of fresh or aged saltwater mixed with Instant Ocean salt in a separate container, are higher than in my tank also! BTW i don't have any cats...I will buy a sailfert test kit and test again...do you think this will be any different? Is there any other way to get a real accurate measure of your waters chemistry?

Someone please correct me if im wrong but theoretically there is not supposed to be any signs of any ammonia, nitrites,or nitrates, amongst others, in new/aged saltwater correct??

Any suggestions are much appreciated!!

Thanks mates!
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Old 09-03-2003, 03:46 PM   #3
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Rather than buy a new test kit, I would take a sample to the LFS and have them test it. Depending on the results, I would then consider a new test kit.

FWIW, I have seen many people having false readings with the AP test kits...at this point I would not consider them.

*Almost forgot to answer your question, there should definitely be NO ammonia in the new make up water. If so, there is a problem either with the salt, source water, or test kit*
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Old 09-03-2003, 04:16 PM   #4
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Thanks so much Hoops...I shall take a sample to the lfs!!
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Old 09-04-2003, 12:09 AM   #5
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I have the same problem. I took a sample to the LFS and they got the same reading. I had them test their premix and it came up 0ppm. They also use Instant Ocean, but from the bucket.

Could we all be on a bad batch?

I have a new test kit on order, Salifert, that I will test it on. I will let you guys know what it says.
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