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Re: chlorine and chloramine

Renee wrote:
"Also,  in regard to extra chlorine/amine in the water supply...What about
just aging your water overnight with some carbon in a box filter or
(this is what I do, so far successfully) go with the slo fill ie a gallon at
a time over the course of several hours/whole day."

Chlorine and chloramine (chlorine + ammonia) have vastly different stable
lives when in solution (with water). If your tap water is treated with
chlorine, just aereating it in a separate container for 24 hours will cause
most of the chlorine in the water to dissapate at which time the water
should be safe to use. And, as you've noticed, if you only do small changes
and the level of chlorine in the tapwater are minimal, you might not run
into any problems at all.

Problems can develop however, when the utility cranks up the levels of
chlorine in the tap water and the aquarist isn't aware of the increase. I
wouldn't depend upon your nose to tell you how much chlorine is in the
water - if you can smell it, the water would probably be very dangerous to
fish but just because you can't smell chlorine doesn't mean that dangerous
levels aren't present. If you are going to be changing more than 20% of the
water in a tank it is always safer to use a dechlorinator.

Chloramine will NOT dissapate overnight all by itself as chlorine will. It
is much more persistent (that's why the utilities use it in the first place)
and can be detected in water for weeks after it comes out of the tap. And
just using a double dose of regular dechlorinator WON'T make chloramine
treated water safe. If you water is treated with chloramine you should use a
product (such as Seachem Prime) which will break the chlorine-ammonia bond,
neutralize the chlorine and bind up the ammonia.

"Admittedly I have a 20 gal
and some free time so it's kinda a luxury right now."

Try your slow fill system with +20 tanks and see how you redefine luxury

"But the aging the water
should drive off any harmful gases and oxidize anything that needs

See above - this works if chlorine is all there is to worry about. If
chloramine is present, all bets are off.

"And of course the carbon sucks a lot of stuff out too."

Are you sure that carbon will remove ammonia????? Better check that one. It
is possible to obtain specially impregnated activated carbons which have
coatings designed to latch onto ammonia but regular activated carbon won't
work very well to remove ammonia from water. And the type of impregnated
activated carbons I'm referring to aren't sold in the pet trade. You can use
a Carbon + Zeolite product, but its more money and more work.

A bottle of Prime is cheap insurance which WILL work. One ml treats 10
gallons of water. Sort of like the old Brylcream ad....."a little dab 'l do
'ya" ...

James Purchase