How Long Does It Take To Thoroughly Dechlorinate Tapwater?

Discussion in 'Water Conditioners and Supplements' started by midthought, Apr 5, 2010.

  1. midthought

    midthought Well Known Member Member

    Short version: How long does it take to really neutralize the chlorine in my tapwater, such that it won't kill off any beneficial bacteria when I add it back in to the tank?

    Long version: When I do water changes, I usually have the water sit out overnight. I still use a dechlorinator (API water conditioner). But when I don't get the chance to use aged water and I have to use fresh tapwater, I add the water conditioner just before and get a little paranoid that some chlorine is getting through just because it hasn't mixed well enough. I know that this and other products love the word "instant" in terms of how safe it makes the water for the fish, but it I just want to get feedback on what other people feel is safe for the bacteria, not just the fish.

    Also, FYI, I don't do large water changes, usually only a gallon or two at a time (for a 10g tank). So I swirl the water and bubble/agitate it pretty thoroughly (I think) with a turkey baster once I put in the drops of dechlorinator. Should I still be worried that any chlorine is getting through and possibly killing off the bacteria?
  2. harpua2002

    harpua2002 Fishlore VIP Member

    It's pretty instant IME. For years, I have used a Python for water changes, and dechlorinated for the volume of the tank while I'm refilling with the Python. I've never had any dechlor-related issues because of this. I use Prime as my dechlor.
  3. OP

    midthought Well Known Member Member

    Well that's comforting. No brick and mortar store I've walked into so far carries Prime, unfortunately, but there's one or two more LFSes I want to check before I start ordering online.

    How do you condition the water with a Python system? Does the conditioner get dropped into the hose as it goes into the tank?

  4. Jaysee

    Jaysee Fishlore Legend Member

    I believe chlorine will naturally evaporate over the course of a day, but chloramine does not. Chloramine is ammonia combined with chlorine. Most, if not all new dechlorinators "remove" both.
  5. Furallicah

    Furallicah Well Known Member Member

    Yeah Chloarmine takes around 48-72 hours to be removed since it is a much more complex (atomically speaking) structure then just chlorine or ammonia along. So adding a dechlorinater is best thing to do. When you add it to fresh tapwater just be sure to stur it up some before adding it. Dechlorinators take just a few seconds to work once spread out through the water. I'll usually set my water out add the dechlorinator and sturr it and let it sit while I change the water. Its the easiest thing to do but leaving it out to age isnt a bad thing either. Its all about personal choice.

    REDKAHUNA Valued Member Member

    I read threads all the time using different chemicals for the water. I have been doing tropicals for 40 years and have never ever used a chemical in 1 of my tanks NEVER. I cycle water with 2 large airstones for 24 hours plus 0ver 250 gal. at a time for water changes THATS IT never anything else. Maybe I am just lucky but I have no trouble and use 100+ gals of water a day. I rarely cycle a tank for more than 1 day because I dont have space for all the baby fish. I was taught something in the beginning by LOU WASSERMANN a famous man amongest guppy people. KEEP IT SIMPLE STUPID.
  7. D

    David C Well Known Member Member

    Red, I'm sure this works great for you and I'm happy for it. I know every municipality uses different levels of chloramines in their water and many of us live in areas that it is heavily used. I wouldn't trust my current levels to dispel naturally or not cause any sort of problem. I would assume you live in an area where your municipality is a little leaner on the chemical usage allowing you much better results.

  8. harpua2002

    harpua2002 Fishlore VIP Member

    There's no trick to it. I just dump the Prime into the tank and fill it up at the same time. Because I do it this way, I dose enough Prime to treat the entire tank.
  9. sirdarksol

    sirdarksol Fishlore Legend Member

    Yep. It takes a long time for chloramine to evaporate. In fact, I'd be willing to guess that Redkahuna is in one of the few municipalities that is still using chlorine instead of chloramine.
  10. TedsTank

    TedsTank Well Known Member Member

    When doing smallish water changes, I add nothing to the gets diluted way down to harmless IMO....just IMO.,,,in the I make RO water and still don't worry about it.

    Usually I try to make several buckets of water (RO),,,and they end up sitting til I feel like changing....chlorine 24 hours is gone...chloramine I guess would be half gone....still way diluted.

  11. sirdarksol

    sirdarksol Fishlore Legend Member

    Question regarding chlorine and RO... Doesn't RO get rid of the chlorine? I know it gets rid of 95+% of impurities, but is chlorine one of them?
  12. harpua2002

    harpua2002 Fishlore VIP Member

    Yes, it does. I use RO to mix my saltwater and to top off for evap, and I do not have to treat it.
  13. sirdarksol

    sirdarksol Fishlore Legend Member

    Thank you.
  14. OP

    midthought Well Known Member Member

    This is what one of the LFS employees was telling me today...I feel less paranoid now that my beneficial bacteria population will take an accidental hit from chlorine during partial water changes. Still gonna dose with a conditioner though. :)

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