Ammonia ppm = Nitrate ppm?

FISHandJEEPS

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My tap water has about 1 ppm of ammonia. When the ammonia is converted to Nitrates, how may ppm of Nitrates will i have? It would make sense for it to be 1 ppm nitrate, but i don't think it will be that low. I wish when i first cycled my tank i recorded how much ammonia i added and how much nitrates i ended up with.
I am curious because i want to know what the lowest amount of nitrates i can have, to make a base line for my water changes. If that makes any sense.

Thanks,
Shawn
 

Lonewolfblue

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I believe it's 1:1:1
1ppm ammonia turns to 1ppm nitrite turns into 1ppm nitrate.
 

Wolf3101

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there is a slight loss on each step as the biomass uses it for energy (growth) but for all practile purpases its close to a 1 to 1 ratio. Personally I just base my water changes on the nitrate reading alone.
 

CHOMPERS

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Wolf3101;983855; said:
there is a slight loss on each step as the biomass uses it for energy (growth) but for all practile purpases its close to a 1 to 1 ratio. Personally I just base my water changes on the nitrate reading alone.
:iagree:
I am way too rusty on my Chemistry, but there is one atom of nitrogen and three atoms of hydrogen in each molecule of ammonia. The term 'Nitrite' is typically a compound in a molecule such as Sodium Nitrite. The actual formula varies by compound but still only contains one nitrogen atom (NO or NO2). The term 'Nitrate' is the same in only having one nitrogen atom but the formula is NO3.

In short, the count of molecules down the nitrogen cycle is directly dependent on the number of nitrogen atoms present. Parts per million (ppm) is a ratio of molecules of (nitrogen compound) to molecules of water. Since the number of nitrogen atoms per molecule of ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate is always one, the ratio does not change after it is completely converted.
 

Wolf3101

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:iagree:
What he said...yea I'll go with that...
 

FISHandJEEPS

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Thanks everyone, so the ammonia in my tap water really doesn't make that much of a difference after it has cycled.

Shawn
 

CHOMPERS

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Yep, but you need to treat the water before you add it to the tank. The ammonia is still very toxic. Use Prime or Amquel Plus to neutralize the ammonia, or use plants to pre-age the water. You can also use a cycled sponge filter in a barrel to age the water.



It is always better to avoid adding chemicals to alter bad water.
 

Burtess

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When the test kits give measurements in ppm, this refers to mg/L.

Comparing an equal number of molecules of ammonia to nitrite to nitrate would be equal if you are considering molarity, but not when you put mass into the picture.

Molecular weights:
N = 14.01
0 = 16.00
H = 1.01

NH3 = 16.03
NO2 = 46.01
NO3 = 62.01

You still have the same number of nitrogen atoms, but the molecule has "gained weight" because of what it has been converted to.

So if you generate 1ppm of NH3, you should end up with 3.9ppm of NO3.

Burt:)
 

FISHandJEEPS

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Burtess;985318; said:
When the test kits give measurements in ppm, this refers to mg/L.

Comparing an equal number of molecules of ammonia to nitrite to nitrate would be equal if you are considering molarity, but not when you put mass into the picture.

Molecular weights:
N = 14.01
0 = 16.00
H = 1.01

NH3 = 16.03
NO2 = 46.01
NO3 = 62.01

You still have the same number of nitrogen atoms, but the molecule has "gained weight" because of what it has been converted to.

So if you generate 1ppm of NH3, you should end up with 3.9ppm of NO3.

Burt:)
This sounds more right. When i cycled my 75 i added ammonia to do a fishless cycle. I added a few ppm until it could convert about 2pmm over night. At the end i had over 80ppm nitrate. I know i didn't add that much ammonia. Thanks.

Chompers thanks for the headsup about prime. I've been using prime for awhile now. I add it to the water before i fill the tanks back up. Works real well. It took me a while to figure out what was going on when i moved to the city. I was used to well water, but everything is on track now. Thanks,
Shawn
 

Lonewolfblue

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CHOMPERS;984755; said:
Yep, but you need to treat the water before you add it to the tank. The ammonia is still very toxic. Use Prime or Amquel Plus to neutralize the ammonia, or use plants to pre-age the water. You can also use a cycled sponge filter in a barrel to age the water.



It is always better to avoid adding chemicals to alter bad water.
Just remember that you aren't doing a 100% PWC, so the amount of ammonia is going to be almost none in a PWC anyways, and the bacteria will make a quick feast of what is added, so there will be no problems for the fish. I hear too many people say how bad ammonia from tap is for the fish, and they don't realize that when added in a 20%-30% PWC, it's almost 0ppm that they are adding, because it's diluted with the other 70% tank water. And the bacteria will rid that very small amount of ammonia in almost no time at all. And in most cases, the fish are giving off a higher amount of ammonia when they pee and poo than what you are actually adding to the tank.
 
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