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Results 1 to 10 of 13
  1. Default Test kit shopping help? (chlorine)

    0 Not allowed!
    (Warning long post below.)

    Previously I have not used dechlorinator, as in my experience it did more harm than good.
    On established (read "heavily overstocked") tanks did not use dechlorinator.
    On advice from some members here I started using it, and once I overdosed (a squirt instead of a few drops) and my loaches went crazy, crashing into things and injuring themselves so I did massive w/c with tapwater. From then on I stopped using it and haven't had any immediate problems associated with water changes.

    My tapwater contains very low concentrations of chlorine, according the the Board of Water Supply it is 0-0.15ppm

    Chlorine reacts with, and is consumed by organic matter. So a dirty, algae covered tank would very quickly use up all the chlorine added by a water change before it has a chance to hurt the fish. I also do not clean mechanical filter media prior to a water change, so water running through the mech. media would be "dechlorinated" by the crap stuck to it before it hits the bio media.

    The active ingredient in a dechlorinator is always a reducing agent, which should preferably react with chlorine, but with no chlorine to react with it could react with something else (fish).

    I am planning to keep new 125 gallon tank much cleaner than before, which would require large water changes without having any significant organic matter (other than the fish themselves!) to absorb chlorine.

    So far I have got by just adding some dechlorinator but really I would like to match the amount of dechlor to chlorine exactly. The fish are stressed after water changes even though I change through the sump and don't mess with the tank itself and I am unsure of the cause.

    In order to match the dosage I would need to know the concentration of chlorine precisely before and after dosing dechlorinator.

    To this end I bought this test kit from Amazon:
    $51.51, good for 200 tests, and it measures total chlorine down to 0.02ppm. Typical pool/spa kits do not measure chlorine this precisely (pool/spa users are trying to maintain a much much higher chlorine concentration; usual precision is 0.1ppm or worse).

    However when I received it I found the reagents were expired. Amazon was nice and refunded it. They had no way to make sure another one would be up to date.

    So now I'm looking for somewhere else to buy the same or similar kit without breaking the bank.
    These guys have it but it's $67.16 and no free shipping unless you order >$200.

    They use USPS so I assume shipping would probably be around $10-15 at most. I would prefer not to give out my full info to a bunch of websites just to find out how much for shipping to Hawaii. Ebay can do it with just a zip code so why are they asking for my full name, address, and phone number?

    I found another site but they ship exclusive with FedEx. Sadly I learned a while ago that sites that ship exclusive with UPS or FedEx have ridiculous prices for shipping to Hawaii (starting around $30!) even though they do "free" shipping in the lower 48.

    Last edited by BIO-Linist; 08-08-2013 at 05:30 AM.

  2. #2


    0 Not allowed!
    To me it seams like you could be making this a little more complicated than it can be.

    I would suggest to use a dechlorinator like Seachem Prime. If you were to carefully dose the proper amount, I can not see you running into any problems. Members here who keep the most sensitive fish use Prime without issue. I'm not too sure about common practices where you live in HI, but in mainland North America the use of chlorimines is becoming more and more popular as a public water treatment method as it is more effective at killing off bacteria as compared to chlorine. I would be worried about your water company starting to use something like this in the future, and if you are not using a dechlorinator, you could run into problems should that happen.

    Just my $0.02
    If you take your time to do the research FIRST, you can successfully set-up and keep ANY type of aquarium with ease.
    "Not using a quarantine tank is like playing Russian roulette. Nobody wins the game, some people just get to play longer than others." - Anthony Calfo
    Fishless Cycle Cycling with Fish Marine Aquarium Info [URL=""]

  3. #3

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    0 Not allowed!
    Here is a list of distributors from the Hanna website, maybe you can find one there,

    The fish probably reacted because the chlorine irritated them. Even though you changed water through the sump, it would still filter through into the main tank long before the chlorine had time to dissipate out of the water. If you are certain you have chlorine in your water supply and not chloramines then why not just let the water sit in a bucket with an air stone overnight and let the chlorine gas off. This is what we used to do when I was a child and before the water companies started using chloramines.
    When I go fishing I just throw sharp rocks in the water and wait for the dead fish to float to the top... Kingfisher
    Everything happens for a reason. Sometimes that reason is you are stupid and make bad decisions.

    I think my fish is adjusting well to the four gallon, He's laying on his side attempting to go to sleep on the bottom of the gravel.
    Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
    Dear naps, sorry I hated you so much when I was a child... Love me

  4. #4


    0 Not allowed!
    +1 for using dechlorinator. I would either use prime or Amquel. Amquel can't be overdosed and is slightly less expensive but works as well as Prime IMO.

    For what It's worth, what chlorine does to bacteria in your tap water it also does to the good bacteria and fish in your tank. Less so to the fish but still not good for them. Chlorine levels in the tap can vary pretty dramaticly over the coarse of any given day. There are a bunch of reasons for that mostly It's dosing level is based on post treatment residual chlorine levels as the water leaves the treatment facility and condition of the water entering the facility for treatment. I say all that to say that since you never really know just how much chlorine is going to be in your tap, It's just good practice to dechlorinate your tap water before you add it to your tank.
    Never under estimate the power of stupid people in large numbers.

    If everyone is thinking alike , then no one is thinking.

    Play ban the person above you Here

  5. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    Thanks all for replying. Sorry, last time I was attempting to reply to this thread my IP address somehow got blocked and I was completely unable to access this website except by using a proxy.
    It was a long reply (I have it saved in Notepad) but when I tried pasting it in I got the same error that led to my blocking.

    Edit: Let's try the Longshot method.

    Thank y0u Cliff and H0ney Badger 1 and thatcichlidguy f0r replying.

    I'm just trying t0 eliminate a variable that in my experience has been ass0ciated with bad things happening.

    Prime and Amquel b0th s0und g00d but then they use it all the time s0 the fish and beneficial bacteria that survive are adapted t0 it. Especially with bacteria, selecti0n pressure fr0m c0nstant usage 0f a certain chemical w0uld fav0r strains that are n0t harmed by it. 0bvi0usly the manufacturer w0uld claim that their pr0duct "can't be 0verd0sed" because they want y0u t0 use m0re.

    And there are th0se threads where pe0ples' cycles are d0ing well, then inexplicably fail. Bam amm0nia spike 0ut 0f n0where. Alm0st always menti0n they used dechl0rinat0r, such as Prime with their water changes. Did they use t00 much and hurt their bb c0l0nies? T00 little and let chl0rine/chl0ramine thr0ugh? Did they shake (0r fail t0 shake) the b0ttle? S0mething else (as pe0ple usually suggest)? N0 way t0 tell. Pe0ple just add the rec0mmended am0unt and assume it w0rks. But what if there was t00 little chl0rine/chl0ramine in the water f0r it t0 react with? T00 much?

    (Chl0ramine? I'm pretty sure we're never switching t0 chl0ramine. Pe0ple here tend t0 value water that is as unadulterated as p0ssible. 0nce in a while there is a "m0vement" t0 flu0ridate the water but it always fails.)

    An0ther benefit 0f testing f0r chl0rine bef0re water change is in case there is an increase in chl0rine c0ncentrati0n fr0m the usual levels. What if s0mething happened and the water c0mpany adds extra chl0rine t0 deal with it? 0r even just increased fl0w leading t0 a higher residual 0ut 0f the tap?

    Everyb0dy n0wadays wants amm0nia, nitrite, and nitrate test results. In the past these were d0ne with expensive lab equipment, n0w there are aff0rdable test kits with reas0nable accuracy widely available. Why n0t chl0rine test results t00?
    I mean, Tetra seems t0 be catching 0n. They include T0tal Chl0rine in their 6-in-1 test strips, alth0ugh these are n0t sensitive en0ugh t0 detect chl0rine at levels that are already t0xic (l0west increment a laughable 0.5ppm, while even a cheap p00l/spa kit can d0 0.1ppm). But this W0ULD be able t0 detect high chl0rine levels, such as if the water c0mpany was adding extra chl0rine f0r whatever reas0n.

    [QU0TE=H0ney Badger 1;1171297]Here is a list 0f distribut0rs fr0m the Hanna website, maybe y0u can find 0ne there, http://www.hannainst.c0m/usa/distribut0rs.cfm?id=2

    The fish pr0bably reacted because the chl0rine irritated them. Even th0ugh y0u changed water thr0ugh the sump, it w0uld still filter thr0ugh int0 the main tank l0ng bef0re the chl0rine had time t0 dissipate 0ut 0f the water. If y0u are certain y0u have chl0rine in y0ur water supply and n0t chl0ramines then why n0t just let the water sit in a bucket with an air st0ne 0vernight and let the chl0rine gas 0ff. This is what we used t0 d0 when I was a child and bef0re the water c0mpanies started using chl0ramines.[/QU0TE]
    Thanks, I went and checked all 0f them while I was banned... n0t much luck.

    Bucket w0uldn't be very user friendly f0r such a large tank, but thanks f0r the suggesti0n. I am planning t0 plumb in a 29 gall0n aquarium which c0uld be used f0r aging the water and/0r mixing dechl0rinat0r in it. With s0me valves I c0uld t0 ch00se t0 shut it 0ff, 0r all0w it t0 sl0wly drip, 0r quickly empty the entire c0ntents int0 the sump.

    0f c0urse, I'd want t0 test f0r any Chl0rine bef0re 0pening that valve. ;)
    Last edited by BIO-Linist; 08-10-2013 at 01:50 AM.

  6. #6


    0 Not allowed!
    Based only on my first hand experience and observations about using prime, I would still say it's completely safe when used correctly

    In my 90 gallon reef tank I used nothing but RO water to mix my salt water, never adding any dechlorinator. All my fish and anemones were wild caught. On a few occasions (2 or 3) when the anemones had spawn, I double dosed prime in case of a slight ammonia spike resulting from three large anemones spawning in a small(ish) tank. Nothing bad happened with my fish, anemones or even SPS corals. None of them were used to any type of dechlorinator at all as I never needed to use it to make my salt water.

    There could be countless other things that could cause what you have read about and experienced.

    Just my experiences and personal observations tho.
    If you take your time to do the research FIRST, you can successfully set-up and keep ANY type of aquarium with ease.
    "Not using a quarantine tank is like playing Russian roulette. Nobody wins the game, some people just get to play longer than others." - Anthony Calfo
    Fishless Cycle Cycling with Fish Marine Aquarium Info [URL=""]

  7. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    Well then you haven't been using it enough for anything such as breakdown products to build up ;)
    And it sounds like your tank was well established if you got spawning going on. Do I assume correctly you also had lots of live rock and a skimmer? And SW usually has more buffering capacity than FW.

    Unfortunately, live rock is illegal in Hawaii, to prevent greedy people from taking what we got in the wild. One reason why I don't keep any SW.

    Basically I just don't want to add chemicals unnecessarily. Though I may decide to stock Prime in my "medicine chest".

  8. #8


    0 Not allowed!
    I do see what you mean about the build up over time. As most people complete large weekly water changes, that would likely not become a very big deal.

    Have you considered using RO water with mineral additives ?

    That would likely give you the best quality water without having to use any chemicals. I have read about some discus keepers taking that approach for the best quality water.
    If you take your time to do the research FIRST, you can successfully set-up and keep ANY type of aquarium with ease.
    "Not using a quarantine tank is like playing Russian roulette. Nobody wins the game, some people just get to play longer than others." - Anthony Calfo
    Fishless Cycle Cycling with Fish Marine Aquarium Info [URL=""]

  9. #9


    0 Not allowed!
    Now that I have had my morning coffee, I had thought about another option for you to consider. If you are using a python to complete your water changes, you can add a media reactor to it and use a good quality activated carbon in it. Better quality carbons, like catalytic activated carbon, will remove all chlorimines and chlorine from your tap water. I know at least one hobbyist here were I live that does this for his tank for a few years now. I think IndianWoodsAngle (another member here) also does something like this as well

    That would be a very low cost option if your chlorine levels are low as the carbon will last a long time.

    If you take your time to do the research FIRST, you can successfully set-up and keep ANY type of aquarium with ease.
    "Not using a quarantine tank is like playing Russian roulette. Nobody wins the game, some people just get to play longer than others." - Anthony Calfo
    Fishless Cycle Cycling with Fish Marine Aquarium Info [URL=""]

  10. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    Thanks for the suggestions. I appreciate your effort. :)

    As for cost of treatment, it would be more cost-effective to use a holding tank with air bubbling through it for "normal water changes", and dechlorinater with "large water changes done in a hurry".

    I recently looked at my options for water filters at some hardware stores. The most cost-effective ones rated for chlorine reduction were rated for around 20,000 gallons and cost around $30. However, the rated flow was too slow, I would need to use several of them in parallel to provide for my usual flow. If water flows too fast through a filter it doesn't have enough contact time to remove the chlorine.
    I don't use a python. The flow would be too slow for my needs. Instead I use a separate 5/8" garden hose each for fill and drain and am planning to add a second hose for drain.

    Anyway none of the treatment options can give measurements of the chlorine concentration. Still would need a test kit for that!

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