View Full Version : opinions on amoninia spike


Smallblock
07-21-2011, 12:11 PM
I've been kinda lazy about my tank for the past month because of just really bad days, but I'm feeling a lil better so I must get back to it. Also my buddy Maple hooked me up with a bunch of stuff, nothing like new stuff to kick the love back in.

Anyway I noticed alot of my sps stn and even my nems are looking sad. I did a Wc last week and started back with my gfo and carbon after a month of being out of supplies. Last night one of my nems was looking really bad so I decided to do a full panel of test. Everything came back ok except there is some amoninia my guess with elos kit is .3. I remember when I did my waterchange my fuge pump had failed and the small amount of water in the fuge was spoiled. I'm guessing it had been that way for a week or so. I vacumed out the fuge but I did leave the sand.

This is my guess of where the amoninia came from. Thoughts? Whats the best method for removing it small or large WC

Smallblock
07-21-2011, 12:26 PM
i meant WCs plural I know its gonna take more than one.

haninja
07-21-2011, 12:27 PM
ditch the salinity salt...

Smallblock
07-21-2011, 12:32 PM
ditch the salinity salt...


hey I'm not the one that brought that thread back. I've had good luck with that salt. I hope your just joking but if your not please explain.

haninja
07-21-2011, 12:35 PM
Not joking. I heard it from another member. Do me a favor and test the newly made saltwater for ammonia.

DawgFace
07-21-2011, 12:39 PM
Argh really? I just did a wc last night with a new batch of Salinity. First time using the stuff.

Acroholic
07-21-2011, 12:55 PM
I think you'll find that the Member had an issue with a single batch of Salinity, and it is not a problem across the entire product line.

Ammonia is used in the manufacture of magnesium chloride, and this is a guess, but I'd bet not all the ammonia was removed from the mag chloride component. Mag chloride, BTW, is the second highest percentage component of sea salt, after NaCl.

Smallblock
07-21-2011, 12:57 PM
I will test the new batch though. I doubt this is my problem but I'll do it for you guys. I don't know if the test would be good though its a mixture of whats left of like 3 buckets.

Edit: so a few small or a couple of large WC, I'm about to start so I need some advice never ran into this problem yet.

Edit: plus I've been using this bucket and the mixture all year and I test at least once a month so I really doubt its the salt.

Edit: other test it was like 1 30 in the morning.

Ph 8.1
N02 .02
N03 1
Calcium 450
Mag 1200
Kh 10
Amoninia .3 in between the .5 and .1

Edit: salinity 1.025 checked with calibration fluid. target is 1.026

Smallblock
07-21-2011, 2:08 PM
Anybody on the advice? One or two big waterchanges or 5 or so smaller WC, just about done mixing the salt.

blakejohn
07-21-2011, 2:11 PM
I used RC for years. As said above ammonia is in the salt process. When I would mix a new batch it did have a very low amount of ammonia. But when it aged over night the ammonia was undetectable.

I doubt your results are from the new salt. I would verify the results with another kit.

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blakejohn
07-21-2011, 2:13 PM
I would do one large wc and then a couple of small ones the following days

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Smallblock
07-21-2011, 2:18 PM
I trust the test because I used it plenty and always gotton 0 but because of the fuge thing and then the livestock not looking so good I feel confident its correct. Only other one I have is an API I'll give it a shot.

I was gonna go with the big change unless someone else had a viable reason why not to. The way I look at it is if I do small ones I'm just removing a small amount and then thinning out what is left. So If I do a large one in my mind I have a better chance of thinning it out better vs the small ones. I hope I am thinking right. For nitrates though I've always heard to do several small ones over the large ones. I'm about to do a 30 gallon change and retest. Wish me and my livestock luck.

blakejohn
07-21-2011, 2:30 PM
If you do have ammonia from the spoiled fuge, one would think that in a day or so the bio filter would have taken care of it and your nitrates would be up.

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Acroholic
07-21-2011, 2:59 PM
Blake,
I would do what you tank is used to. If you do small water changes normally, then do several small changes now. Likewise if you do large changes normally.

Smallblock
07-21-2011, 3:00 PM
I just don't know I get the same results on the clean water and the tank water out of the elos test, but a slight differance out of the API, it may be a bad test kit. I can't find an experation on it. I'm doing the WC anyway. I don't know

Edit: I'm gonna mix up a small batch of Reef crystals in a few and test both kits on it. I'm going to wait and let my wife read the results because I half A color blind anyway. Greens and blues and yellow get a lil mixed up.

blakejohn
07-21-2011, 3:20 PM
Blake,
I would do what you tank is used to. If you do small water changes normally, then do several small changes now. Likewise if you do large changes normally.

Not trying to argue but, if one was to have any amount of ammonia in their normally ammonia free tank, wouldn't it make sense to do a large wc to dilute the remaining ammonia in the water regardless if one only did small wc's or even rarely?

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Acroholic
07-21-2011, 3:35 PM
Not trying to argue but, if one was to have any amount of ammonia in their normally ammonia free tank, wouldn't it make sense to do a large wc to dilute the remaining ammonia in the water regardless if one only did small wc's or even rarely?

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Yup....probably would if the NH4 level is too high, but several small WCs done closely to one another or a single large WC probably wouldn't have much different a net result.

First thing I would do is throw some Prime in there to detoxify the ammonia he does have, then do my water changes, large or small.

jmaneyapanda
07-21-2011, 3:41 PM
Yup....probably would if the NH4 level is too high, but several small WCs done closely to one another or a single large WC probably wouldn't have much different a net result.

First thing I would do is throw some Prime in there to detoxify the ammonia he does have, then do my water changes, large or small.

I think you mean NH3

Acroholic
07-21-2011, 3:45 PM
I think you mean NH3
My bad...not NH4 ammonium, ....NH3 ammonia.

jmaneyapanda
07-21-2011, 3:50 PM
That being said, was there a pH shift? That can cause harmless NH4 convert to toxic NH3

Acroholic
07-21-2011, 3:53 PM
Ammonium converts to ammonia above pH 7, so is that a factor? Most reef tanks will be over pH 7 any time anyways?

jmaneyapanda
07-21-2011, 4:04 PM
Ammonium converts to ammonia above pH 7, so is that a factor? Most reef tanks will be over pH 7 any time anyways?

Depending on temperature

jmaneyapanda
07-21-2011, 4:06 PM
And I have no idea wharves the elos kit tests for NH3, or total nitrogen NH3.

Smallblock
07-21-2011, 4:34 PM
No ph swing, other than the slight drop at night. Elos test for nh3 and nh4 together

Edit: says nh 3/4

jmaneyapanda
07-21-2011, 4:38 PM
No ph swing, other than the slight drop at night. Elos test for nh3 and nh4 together

Edit: says nh 3/4

That's why. That's total nitrogen and includes harmless NH4. You'll need to convert based on pH and temp.

Smallblock
07-21-2011, 7:58 PM
ok lemme do some research and try to find the formula unless you know it off the top of your head.

jmaneyapanda
07-21-2011, 8:06 PM
ok lemme do some research and try to find the formula unless you know it off the top of your head.

It's a chart. I have it at work. It took me 88 years to find.

Smallblock
07-21-2011, 8:10 PM
man your old, lol thanks I'll try and find it.

jmaneyapanda
07-21-2011, 8:15 PM
man your old, lol thanks I'll try and find it.

Granted, I needed to find what I was looking for before finding it itself.

Basically, it's a chart of percentage of total nitrogen ammonia that is ionic ammonia at different temps and pHs. I can tell you this, 0.3 will be a very small amount of toxic ammonia. A couple percent typically.

cr500_af
07-21-2011, 9:56 PM
Which begs the question, why include the harmless NH4 in the test at all? Cheaper and easier to manufacture I assume?

laplmi
07-22-2011, 1:13 PM
I've always let my saltwater mix for water change sit overnight or at least a day before doing the change.