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Question about Prime vs Aqueon water conditioner and use

platytetrafan

AC Members
Hi all I posted a couple weeks back in the freshwater forum about an ammonia issue I was having in 3 already cycled tanks that had been up and going for years without much of an issue. I have a 36 gallon bow and a 2 gallon and 5 gallon with 1 betta each in the smaller tanks. With the use of using prime and reducing the amount of water I was changing in my tanks every 2 weeks and also not doing such vigorous gravel vacs and reducing the amount of food I fed in my 36 gallon to every other day and small amounts to the bettas with a one day fast. I was able to get the 36g tank ammonia free with appropriate nitrates showing and nitrite free which it had been for a long time until recently. I also am using stability to boost the filter which I know some members believe doesn't work but thought to give it a try.

I no longer have to dose the 36 gallon with Prime unless doing a water change. My 2 gallon is now as of 10/19/18 no longer showing ammonia nitrites are 0 and nitrate 5-10. My 5 gallon is still showing ammonia about .25, 0 nitrite and approx. 5 on the nitrate using API test drops. I am going to be getting the test kit from seachem which tests free ammonia to see if I am getting true readings of ammonia on the 2 & 5 gallon. When I called Prime tech support they told me not to change out the water on the 5 gallon as yet but to continue dosing with Prime. I just want to make sure that the readings I am getting are accurate. Also I was told that the use of Prime is when you have an emergency with higher ammonia levels only. Is that true? I have read and also been told that you can continue to use it with water changes but if the fish get sick for some reason you can't use certain meds with that water conditioner.

My last and most important question is about my QT tank now that my 36 gallon is under control I am now setting up my 10 gallon QT to start getting fish ready to slowly restock my 36 gallon. It is pitifully under stocked. The only way I know to cycle a tank in general is the fishy way. I have used striped danios in the past and they are the hardiest. Should I use the Aqueon and avoid using Prime for that tank? I ask because if by chance the fish I do add to the QT do get sick I won't be able to add appropriate meds using Prime or so they say. I unfortunately cannot use the additional small filter that is in my 36 gallon filter cannister that I usually would use for the QT filter cannister to seed the water with bio media because I only have 6 fish in the 36 gallon & I believe most of my media is in that filter sponge. So I know am going to have to closely watch my ammonia nitrite and nitrate levels very closely in the QT and do water changes as necessary until cycled. I basically need to know what people who use Prime have done and continue to do and should I continue using it for my other tanks. My gut is telling me to avoid using it in the QT. Sorry this is so long and appreciate anyone's input regarding these products. Thanks!!
 

platytetrafan

AC Members
Has anyone used Prime longer than for emergency spikes of ammonia? I ask again because I went to LFS Petland & asked them the same question and the response I got back from them was that the only way to see if my readings are true is to empty the whole tank. Really? No way I would ever do that. From what I have read a lot of fishkeepers use Prime regularly. For my QT I decided not to use it & use the Aqueon water conditioner & just see how it goes just monitoring my levels and doing regular WC's when necessary until I see the appropriate readings and know it's cycled properly. I am just unsure if I should continue to use the Prime in my other tanks. If anyone uses it or has used it then switched back to another conditioner please respond back to me I would really appreciate your input. Thanks!
 

fishorama

AC Members
I use Prime for all water changes & for acclimation. The Seachem & API ammonia tests will show ammonia if your water co. uses chloramine (often 1ppm)...but Prime will "lock up" the ammonia for 24-48 hours. In a cycled tank that will be long enough for your beneficial bacteria to "catch up" & convert it.

I have never used Aqueon water conditioner so I don't know if it's similar to Prime or like the good old sodium thiosulphate we used 15-20 years ago. In a cycled tank, either can be fine...especially if your tap water uses only chlorine rather than the longer to break down chloramine. On city or county water supply you should be able to look it up online.
 

platytetrafan

AC Members
I use Prime for all water changes & for acclimation. The Seachem & API ammonia tests will show ammonia if your water co. uses chloramine (often 1ppm)...but Prime will "lock up" the ammonia for 24-48 hours. In a cycled tank that will be long enough for your beneficial bacteria to "catch up" & convert it.

I have never used Aqueon water conditioner so I don't know if it's similar to Prime or like the good old sodium thiosulphate we used 15-20 years ago. In a cycled tank, either can be fine...especially if your tap water uses only chlorine rather than the longer to break down chloramine. On city or county water supply you should be able to look it up online.
Thank you so much!!! So far my 36 g and 2 g are not showing ammonia anymore but my 2 g still is. So am continuing to use the Prime in that tank. In my QT I decided not to use Prime because if I have to medicate the fish if they come down with something I read that you can't use certain meds with Prime. So will see how it goes. I appreciate you responding to my questions. :D
 

fishorama

AC Members
I never heard of Prime interfering with meds. I use in QT but I haven't had new fish in a long time. Do you recall what meds are supposedly affected?
 

authmal

Pseudonovice
I never heard of Prime interfering with meds. I use in QT but I haven't had new fish in a long time. Do you recall what meds are supposedly affected?
Or where you saw it? That's an odd caution against Prime.
 

fishorama

AC Members
Yeah, what authmal asked too!

I'm always learning new stuff & just because I haven't heard of it doesn't mean it's not true. I just need more info & citations if possible. A "real scientific study" or 1 hobbyist's "opinion"...or more?

I often have opinions, lol. You should know that by now, platytetrafan, you've been here quite a long time too :cool:
 

platytetrafan

AC Members
Update: Ok so I finally have my 2 gallon tank and my 36 gallon tank under control. But my 5 gallon is frustrating me big time. I had been using prime on all three tanks to get the ammonia under control the 2 gallon and the 36 gallon both show no ammonia no nitrite and nitrates on the 2 gallon between 5-10 and 10 on the 36 gallon. I was using prime but switched back to aqueon water conditioner and so far so good.

The 5 gallon tank is driving me up a wall. I tested the water after doing a water change only removed about 25% of the water yesterday today I tested the water and still ammonia with that tank I was still using pirme but with this last change I used aqueon water conditioner. What is crazy is that I also decided to test my tap water right out of the tap and it show 0 ammonia but could there still be chlorine or chloramine in the water? I live in NY so am thinking they use it to treat the water. Nitrates are showing up approx 5. Today I ordered the Seachem free ammonia kit because I definitely have to know for sure if free ammonia is still in that tank but for the life of me I can't figure out why I am still having this issue. That tank was cycled for years am smh!!!! I know that water changes help to decrease ammonia levels but if removing too much water during changes started this issue I need some sound advise as to what to do until the free ammonia test is delivered to my home. The API drops are testing positive for ammonia.

Seachem site says not to use copper based meds with using prime because it can convert the meds to a more toxic form. I haven't used any meds in the tank but read this on their site.
 
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fishorama

AC Members
The API ammonia test should show ~.25-.5ppm IF your water co. uses chloramine. That's the "amine" part of chloramine. Since your API test didn't show any, maybe your co. still uses just chlorine, ours in MA & DE did. Chlorine would need it's own test but any dechlor product would work for that.

It could be the water co. did a big flush of higher than normal system flush for some reason, maybe it had a "spike" of something.

As for your 5g, do you have lots of dying plants or dead snails? Overfeeding? That's all I can think of...

Thanks for the Prime & copper issue. I haven't used copper as a med for 30+ years, but it's good to know.
 

platytetrafan

AC Members
No problem happy to share the info. I am really stumped as to why am having such issues with the 5g I try not to overfeed no dieing plants & no snails. Hoping when I get the other test kit I will get more accurate readings. Thanks for replying back appreciate it.
 
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