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Old 03-16-2023, 08:14 PM   #1
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My city tap water is toxic!

Hi yíall. I recently had a large ammonia spike after a water change and I was baffled so I tested my tap water. Are yíall sitting down?
Ammonia 8ppm
Nitrite 0ppm
Nitrate 5ppm

Ok so Iíve been using ammo lock but Iím going to have to change the water at some point. Any suggestions? Should I use store bought drinking water instead?

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Old 03-16-2023, 09:00 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pixiekeepsfish View Post
Hi yíall. I recently had a large ammonia spike after a water change and I was baffled so I tested my tap water. Are yíall sitting down?
Ammonia 8ppm
Nitrite 0ppm
Nitrate 5ppm

Ok so Iíve been using ammo lock but Iím going to have to change the water at some point. Any suggestions? Should I use store bought drinking water instead?
City water systems get occasional flushings so I would contact your water company and find out if this is a normal level or just a temporary thing. No matter what their answer, I would do an ammonia test on your tap water before doing any water changes in the future.
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Old 03-16-2023, 11:54 PM   #3
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City water systems get occasional flushings so I would contact your water company and find out if this is a normal level or just a temporary thing. No matter what their answer, I would do an ammonia test on your tap water before doing any water changes in the future.
I did call the water treatment plant this morning, I was told that they do add extra ammonia to the water but do not monitor the levels in the tap water.
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Old 03-17-2023, 02:58 AM   #4
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How big a tank is it? If you need lots of water it would be cheaper long run to get your own RO filter and remineralise rather than buying water from the store. Or do you live somewhere you can collect enough rainwater?
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Old 03-17-2023, 03:38 AM   #5
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Hi and welcome to the forum

The people working for your water company are slack and stupid. They overdosed the ammonia and now you have toxic tap water. Report it to the newspapers and state government. If you have 8ppm ammonia in the tap water, that is illegal and above world health safety limits. You don't want to be washing or bathing in water with ammonia and you certainly don't want to drink it. Nothing should be in contact with it or ingest it because it's poisonous.

Buy a bag of Zeolite (Ammogon) from a pet shop and fill a container with tap water. Put the Zeolite in a filter and pop that in the bucket of tap water. Leave it to run until the ammonia level is 0ppm. Then dechlorinate that water and it for water changes. If you don't have access to Zeolite, add some floating plants to a container of tap water and give them lots of light, they should use the ammonia.

You can recharge the Zeolite by soaking it in salt water. Buy a bag of swimming pool salt and get a plastic chamber hydrometer (used to measure salt levels in marine tanks) from a pet shop, and make up a 20litre (5 gallon) bucket of salt water and put the used Zeolite in it and leave it to soak for a couple of days. Then the Zeolite can be re-used. Some packets of Zeolite have instructions for the amount of salt to use and if you can find that, you won't need to get a hydrometer.

If you use a plastic air operated box filter filled with Zeolite, you can simply leave the Zeolite in the filter when you move it from the bucket of tap water to the bucket of salt water, and back again.
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Old 03-17-2023, 08:15 AM   #6
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How big a tank is it? If you need lots of water it would be cheaper long run to get your own RO and remineralise rather than buying water from the store. Or do you live somewhere you can collect enough rainwater?
I live in rural Kansas, we are looking into a whole home RO filter but that will take a little time.

Sorry for not giving enough details, I have 37 gallon a planted tank with two fancy goldfish and three snails. I think for this week we are going to buy water and work on getting that filter put in asap.
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Old 03-17-2023, 10:26 AM   #7
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Thank you the nearest fish store is an hour away and unfortunately they are out of zeolite (guess everyone needs it). But yay Amazon can get it for me tomorrow.
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Old 03-17-2023, 05:27 PM   #8
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Thank you the nearest fish store is an hour away and unfortunately they are out of zeolite (guess everyone needs it). But yay Amazon can get it for me tomorrow.
With an ammonia level that high, I'd prepare your refill water in a separate container. I use a 32 gal plastic trash can ( cheap enough from Home Depot) and just throw a corner filter filled with the zeolite in it into the can then leave it bubbling overnight. Check your ammonia level in the morning before using.
Another option that's I've used is a culligan ( https://www.culliganwaterkansas.com/ ) filter on the water line to remove ammonia. It might be a little more expensive to set up but cheaper in the long run when it comes to replacing the zeolite over time. I've used Culligan filters to remove chloramine, adjust Ph and soften water for our import station. Considering that you really shouldn't be drinking that much ammonia on a continual basis, a filter for your whole house may not be out of line. ??
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Old 03-18-2023, 07:05 AM   #9
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My city tap water is toxic!

City water isnít prepared with aquarium fish in mind unfortunately.
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Old 03-18-2023, 11:28 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pixiekeepsfish View Post
Hi yíall. I recently had a large ammonia spike after a water change and I was baffled so I tested my tap water. Are yíall sitting down?
Ammonia 8ppm
Nitrite 0ppm
Nitrate 5ppm

Ok so Iíve been using ammo lock but Iím going to have to change the water at some point. Any suggestions? Should I use store bought drinking water instead?
If this is a permanent condition I suggest getting a reverse osmosis system. In the long run far cheaper than store bought water.
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