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Discuss all topics related to freshwater and planted tanks.

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Joined: Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:56 pm


by DeanV

Hey there,

I have my tank for like 2 months now and i am having a massive problem .
I have a 5 gallon fish tank - 20l ... it is medium planted , i have a beta and a few neon tetras. My tank was fine until my plant decayed and after that my ammonia spiked.
its like over 8! that is way above the normal usage -dosage! besides that my ph is neutral , nitrate is fine its just that ammonia that is crazy high. i changed my carbon , my filter material . i vaccumed my grave ( well as well as i could) . i did 2 50% water change . actually i did more that 50% at some point. i use prime - clorine remover and i use amolock and stress zyme , i also got blue crystal which make my water hard. :D i am just out of idea and money ! help !

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by natalie265

Changing your filter media was probably the worst thing you could have done. You need a good colony of beneficial bacteria to break down the ammonia. When you changed your filter media, you threw out your bacteria colony. Keep doing the big water changes, daily if needed until you can grow a new colony. Read up on "tank cycling" while you're at it.. Personally, i would discontinue the amlock stuff. From what i understand, this will eventually "unlock" and release ammonia back into the tank. Perhaps that is what has happened already. One last thing. Why are you hardening your water? betas and neons both prefer soft, acidic water.

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Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 5:35 am
Location: QLD Australia

by Alasse

Amlock will work, but understand the ammonia will often still show up on testing, all the product does it change it to a less dangerous form, it doesnt re-release ammonia. I've used an ammonia locking product, works well with WC's

Cleaning the filter totally is never good, let alone on a tank in trouble. I hate to say it, but i'm sure you've killed your cycle, and will need to restart.

At this stage i would pull it down and clean it (keep a cupful of unwashed gravel), clean remaining gravel, decor etc

When tank is clean, add the cup of dirty gravel into the bottom spread it out, then add clean gravel over the top. Add everything back in and fill it, bring it up to temp and put fish back in.

Now you will have more control over the tank. Test often if the ammonia goes over 1, do a 50% WC, keep going until its cycled

You have no need to harden your water, bothtypes of fish like soft water.


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