Ammonia Test Always Has Slight Green Tinge In Cycled Tanks.

Status
Not open for further replies.

~EverythingsSoSawbwa~

Valued Member
Messages
386
Reaction score
196
Points
63
Location
Australia
Experience
1 year
Hi

I've noticed in some of our cycled tanks that when I test the ammonia using the API master test kit that some tanks have a slight green tinge in the ammonia results, but some are yellow. It seems to be the more established ones have the yellow, but the more newly cycled ones have slight green tinge.

I've read a few things about the ammonia always coming out with a slight green tinge, apparently it's a problem with the test. But some of our tanks have the straight yellow color.

Could it be ammonium, the non-toxic type of ammonia? Or maybe it's because it can't process ammonia as quickly as more established tanks which means there I a hint of ammonia in the tanks? What else could it be? Maybe I'm looking at it in the wrong light?

The tanks are definitely cycled.

Thanks Hope I made myself clear!
 

MissRuthless

Well Known Member
Messages
753
Reaction score
386
Points
78
Location
RI/NH/ME
Experience
5 years
If you're seeing green, you're not quite cycled. Your bacteria may just have a little more catching up to do, but your test should be 100% yellow when you're cycled and since some of your tanks test at zero, it's not a faulty test but your water itself. The bacterial colony is not quite big enough to process every bit of ammonia right away yet, and yes there is a hint of ammonia in the tank. Which means it's not quite cycled. Are you seeing nitrate yet? If so then you're almost there and the ammonia should be gone in short order.

Also be sure to view each test from multiple angles and in multiple light sources if you're not sure - I don't have the best eyesight anymore so sometimes I take a photo with the flash on and read the test that way to be sure I'm seeing it correctly.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
OP
~EverythingsSoSawbwa~

~EverythingsSoSawbwa~

Valued Member
Messages
386
Reaction score
196
Points
63
Location
Australia
Experience
1 year
If you're seeing green, you're not quite cycled. Your bacteria may just have a little more catching up to do, but your test should be 100% yellow when you're cycled and since some of your tanks test at zero, it's not a faulty test but your water itself. The bacterial colony is not quite big enough to process every bit of ammonia right away yet, and yes there is a hint of ammonia in the tank. Which means it's not quite cycled. Are you seeing nitrate yet? If so then you're almost there and the ammonia should be gone in short order.

Also be sure to view each test from multiple angles and in multiple light sources if you're not sure - I don't have the best eyesight anymore so sometimes I take a photo with the flash on and read the test that way to be sure I'm seeing it correctly.
It's only very slight green tinge, it's not green, it's still yellow, but not yellow ~ yellow if you know what I mean. It's not as green as the .25 reading. These tanks are several months old, we already went through the cycling process (saw ammonia, then nitrite, then nitrate, then ammonia and nitrite went to 0). I've read about some people having problems with ammonia testing always having a slight green tinge, it's a fault with the product. Our nearly 6 month old tank has just started showing the 100% yellow color in the last few weeks. Maybe we are just looking at it in the wrong light. Thanks for your reply
 

MissRuthless

Well Known Member
Messages
753
Reaction score
386
Points
78
Location
RI/NH/ME
Experience
5 years
What is your ph? Perhaps it's low enough that your colony takes longer to catch up?

If it was a faulty product, you would not get a pure yellow zero reading with other samples.

Did you cycle fishless or with fish? How have you gone about stocking since then? Just because your ammonia and nitrite drop to zero at one point does not mean your tank is cycled permanently forever. There are many things than interrupt the cycle, or cause a "mini cycle" as some call it. Any change in bioload, maintenance, chemicals, a dead fish, rotting plant, I could go on.,, but the point is that all sorts of things could be the culprit. You should not assume that because the tank cycled in the beginning that it cannot possibly have been interrupted - it's more likely that there is actually a small amount of ammonia needing to be processed than that your test is faulty but only sometimes with some samples.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
OP
~EverythingsSoSawbwa~

~EverythingsSoSawbwa~

Valued Member
Messages
386
Reaction score
196
Points
63
Location
Australia
Experience
1 year
What is your ph? Perhaps it's low enough that your colony takes longer to catch up?

If it was a faulty product, you would not get a pure yellow zero reading with other samples.

Did you cycle fishless or with fish? How have you gone about stocking since then? Just because your ammonia and nitrite drop to zero at one point does not mean your tank is cycled permanently forever. There are many things than interrupt the cycle, or cause a "mini cycle" as some call it. Any change in bioload, maintenance, chemicals, a dead fish, rotting plant, I could go on.,, but the point is that all sorts of things could be the culprit. You should not assume that because the tank cycled in the beginning that it cannot possibly have been interrupted - it's more likely that there is actually a small amount of ammonia needing to be processed than that your test is faulty but only sometimes with some samples.
pH is 8.2-8.4. Did a Fish less cycle with fish food. We have stocked the tanks very slowly. We do have a bit of ammonia in our tap water. The fish are doing great. I don't suppose it could be ammonium that's coming up on the test?
 

MissRuthless

Well Known Member
Messages
753
Reaction score
386
Points
78
Location
RI/NH/ME
Experience
5 years
Well cycling with fish food you don't really know how high of a bioload you're cycling to, so it could be a bit of ammonia from the last fish stocked and the colony is still catching up. Nitrifying bacteria does grow slower at a higher ph like that. Could also be the little bit that's in your tap and hasn't been processed yet. How often do you do water changes, and does the test still show green right before a water change, like if it's been a week will it still be green? Or is it only green soon after a water change?
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #7
OP
~EverythingsSoSawbwa~

~EverythingsSoSawbwa~

Valued Member
Messages
386
Reaction score
196
Points
63
Location
Australia
Experience
1 year
Well cycling with fish food you don't really know how high of a bioload you're cycling to, so it could be a bit of ammonia from the last fish stocked and the colony is still catching up. Nitrifying bacteria does grow slower at a higher ph like that. Could also be the little bit that's in your tap and hasn't been processed yet. How often do you do water changes, and does the test still show green right before a water change, like if it's been a week will it still be green? Or is it only green soon after a water change?
Anytime we test it, it will have a slight green tinge. But we do usually test after water changes I guess. Thanks for your help. It May just be from the tap water and it's still taking a little while for the ammonia to process through. hopefully when the tank becomes more established it will come up as 100% yellow.
 

MissRuthless

Well Known Member
Messages
753
Reaction score
386
Points
78
Location
RI/NH/ME
Experience
5 years
Next time try testing right before you change the water instead of after, and see how it reads then. While the bacteria will grow slowly at the high ph, I'd think once it gets to where it needs to be it should be able to process the ammonia from the tap within 24 hours.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #9
OP
~EverythingsSoSawbwa~

~EverythingsSoSawbwa~

Valued Member
Messages
386
Reaction score
196
Points
63
Location
Australia
Experience
1 year
Next time try testing right before you change the water instead of after, and see how it reads then. While the bacteria will grow slowly at the high ph, I'd think once it gets to where it needs to be it should be able to process the ammonia from the tap within 24 hours.
Ok will do Thanks @MissRuthless !
 

Pishies

Valued Member
Messages
206
Reaction score
91
Points
63
Experience
2 years
On another forum I look at, many people are complaining of the same issue with their API master test kit always showing a slight tinge of green, even in well established tanks.

They are also saying its a fault with the test kits and not to worry about it.

Some of my tanks have the slight green tinge on the test and some don't.
 

MissRuthless

Well Known Member
Messages
753
Reaction score
386
Points
78
Location
RI/NH/ME
Experience
5 years
Like I said - if some are showing green and some are showing yellow it is ammonia, not a faulty test. A faulty test would show the same results with every sample, it's not like it's only faulty sometimes.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Toggle Sidebar




Top Bottom