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Prime and dechlorinators, heavy metals vs. nutrients
I think someone on this list mentioned that they use Seachem's "Prime" for dechlorinating tapwater for their planted tank, and I wanted to get a little more info. I was using Jungle's "Start Right" or Aquarium Pharmaceuticals' "Stress Coat" for my water (treated by the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, Potomac River MD drainage). But I switched to using nothing and just aging the water, after reading that those dechlorinators have heavy metal-neutralizing properties, which is meant to be good for fish, but in fact they neutralize the iron and trace elements in plant fertilizers.
So, for those of us who are not yet using an R.O. or D.I. system, what is the best choice for a dechlorinator for planted tank water? The other day I was filling my buckets and the chlorine smell was like being at a swimming pool. Maybe they dose the system at the beginning of the month, or would the stronger smell indicate chloramine? Does "Prime" cover chloramine as well? What about products that claim to "break the chloramine bond"? Isn't that like adding ammonia to the tank?
Anyway that smell made me nervous and I want to start using a dechlor again. Any advice is much appreciated.