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On Sun, 1 Nov 1998, Cliff Lundberg wrote:
> Does chlorine only dissipate though evaporation? I always
> presumed a lot of it combines with stuff in the tank water.
It does combine with stuff in the tank, and I imagine that very little of
the chlorine residual stays in most tanks long enough to evaporate.
Evaporation is probably the major process that reduces chlorine
concentrations in pure tap water that's left to sit out, but there are
more things going on in an aquarium.
Some of the stuff that chlorine combines with is inanimate organic
chemicals but some is living to start with and ends up dead afterwords.
The products of the combination may include some chlorinated hydrocarbons
(trihalomethanes, for instance) and these aren't benign. I think they're
human carcinogens. Don't know what the long term exposure effect in
your tank might be.
Long experience shows that you can do 25% water changes with chlorinated
water without killing fish. I don't know if this experience extends to
other tank inhabitants.