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Chloramination

Water supplied to residents of the city of St. Petersburg meets or exceeds all health standards for drinking water as outlined by the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Safe Drinking Water Act. The change in method of water disinfection from chlorine to chloramines occurred on May 6, 2002. All residents of the city of St. Petersburg now have water treated with chloramines. The use of chloramines for water disinfection is a safe and proven method and is used in other parts of Florida and in the country.

Please remember, chloramines must be removed from water used to keep live fish and other aquatic life. Visit your pet supplier for the appropriate chemical treatment or filtration method.

For additional questions about chloramination, please call the St. Petersburg Water Resources Department at (727) 893-7261.

Special Information for Pet Stores and Fish Aquarium Owners

In May 2002, the city of St. Petersburg began using chloramines rather than chlorine as the disinfectant residual in its drinking water. This change was made in advance of new federal and state drinking water regulations for disinfection by-products. Chloramines have been successfully used throughout the country for decades.

What does this mean for aquarium and pond owners?

While the chloraminated water that customers receive will be superior to state and federal drinking water standards, chloramines are harmful to fish when they directly enter the bloodstream. Since fish and other aquatic animals take chloramines directly from the water into their bloodstreams through their gills, chloramines, like chlorine, must be removed from water used for keeping live fish and other aquatic life.

What type of aquatic life do chloramines affect?

Chloramines, like chlorine, will kill both salt and fresh water fish and other aquatic life including Koi fish, lobster, shrimp, frogs, turtles, snails, clams and live coral. Chloramines, therefore, like chlorine, must be removed before using tap water in your fresh or salt- water aquarium or pond.

How can I remove chloramines from my water?

A water-conditioning agent specifically designed to remove chloramines or an activated carbon filter must be used according to product instructions. If you are already using one of these products to remove chlorine, it's possible that the same product may also remove chloramines. However, you must read the product label to be sure. Chlorine removal agents that are not specifically designed to also remove chloramines could leave excess ammonia in the water. Too much ammonia could harm fish. Pet stores and other retail outlets have sold these products for years and have generally recommended their use. Your pet supplier should be able to provide any further guidance you may need. Be sure to give the treatment method the appropriate time to work.

Won't letting water sit for a few days remove chloramines from tanks or pond water?

No! Unlike chlorine, which dissipates when water sits for a few days, chloramines are longer lasting and may take weeks to dissipate. This is not a safe method for removing chloramines..

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City of St. Petersburg
P.O. Box 2842
St. Petersburg, FL 33731

  • p: 727-893-7111
  • f: 727-892-5102
  • tty: 727-892-5259
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