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Re: [APD] Re: treating for both in well water

SunflwrgrlS at aol_com wrote:

Perhaps I read that post wrong, but I don't suggest treating for ammonia/clorine/cloramines in well water unless you've tested it and found this sort of thing present. I have well water and have none of those things, although I have a whole house filter because I get sand in my water. I used to add declor products "just in case" and it didnt seem to matter in my larger tanks. However, my 10 gallon Q tank in which I did frequent water changes, I persistent green water and poor luck with Ottos (ok, I realize that Ottos are sensitive, but...). One day I decided against using declor. Believe it or not, with that first un-declor water change, the green water started going away. Within a few days, it was gone! It hasn't come back and I haven't lost an Otto since (knocks on wood). I'm not quite sure I subscribe to the theory to add chemicals "just in case" (although I did before). Maybe we ought to find out if they are necessary first?

I heartily agree with this sentiment. Know what you are doing, whenever possible. Avoid guessing if it can add problems. Chloramine has been a problem in agricultural areas for many years. [Long before EPA entered with its jackboot methods. :-)] Doesn't mean you have any.

If you do not add chlorine, yourself, it is most unlikely that your water has any chlorine or chloramine. If it has ammonium/ammonia from ag runoff, you might need to do *two* tests.

A standard salicylate ammonia test can detect down to below 0.25 ppm of combined ammonia/ammonium. If *any* can be detected, measure pH. It is important that you keep pH well below 8, if any NH4+/NH3 can be detected. That way, most stays as ammonium until plants or biofilter can use it and remove from the water. The ammonium ion is relatively harmless, like the chloride ion. Elemental ammonia, OTOH, is really damaging, even worse than elemental chlorine at times, and at far lower levels. It is 50X higher at pH=9 than at 7.

Rather than add "pH-Down" or other such chemicals that may feed algae and upset metabolic processes, I prefer to add a carbon filter to the incoming supply, and run it slow enough to grab all the ammonium/chlorine/chloramine that might be present. YMMV. [Again, frequent tests may be needed to detect "punch-through" when the cartridge is saturated or to set your max safe flow rate.]

You might be able to replace the sand and sediment cartridge in an ordinary household filter with a "taste and odor" carbon filter and get all the benefits in one device. [Test!]


PS. I never use the ammonium/ammonia tests that are based on Nessler's Reagent. They contain mercury, and IDK how to safely get rid of the test water.

Wright Huntley - Rt. 001 Box K36, Bishop CA 93514 - whuntley at verizon_net
                    760 872-3995

Eschew obfuscation and bloviation!

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