Seachem has two somewhat similar products if you want to remove ammonia, nitrites and nitrates from your fish tank. So which is better, Seachem Prime or Seachem Stability? You can find out in this comparison guide.
Available Bottle Sizes
Seachem Stability is packaged in seven different bottle sizes: 50 mL, 100 mL, 250 mL, 500 mL, 1 L, 2 L and 4 L.
Seachem Prime Water Conditioner is also available in seven different bottle sizes: 50 mL, 100 mL, 250 mL, 500 mL, 1 L, 2 L and 4 L.
You can check out the price tags for 500 mL bottles of both products on Amazon with the following links:
Both products can be used on freshwater, saltwater (marine) and brackish water fish tanks.
Seachem Prime does not have an expiration date while Seachem Stability has an expiration set 4 years from the date of manufacture.
Removing Ammonia, Nitrites and Nitrates
The two products remove ammonia, nitrites and nitrates in different ways.
Seachem Prime actually does not remove any of the three nitrogen compounds at all. Instead, the formulated chemical is designed to detoxify ammonia, nitrites and nitrates for up to 48 hours. As a result, your fish will be safe from the toxins for a short period of time.
Although Prime does not remove ammonia, nitrites and nitrates on its own, the product does work in conjunction with your biological filter. Even if the ammonia, nitrites and nitrates are detoxified, the compounds are still readily consumed be beneficial bacteria. To speed up the process, you can also use Prime during water changes to bring down the concentration of the aforementioned nitrogen compounds in your tank.
Seachem Stability offers a more direct approach. The product contains spores that will activated when added to your aquarium. After taking around 24 hours to settle in the tank, the beneficial aerobic, anaerobic and facultative bacteria will then start to break down the ammonia, nitrites and nitrates.
The aerobic and facultative bacteria should grow fine in a vast majority of fish tanks as you only need surface area, which you should already have plenty of if you have a filter, substrate, plants, decorations, ornaments and/or any other objects.
Anaerobic is harder to grow and maintain as it requires surface area where oxygen is limited. Thus, you most likely need a deep sand bed substrate of more than three inches in depth or a special filter media like Seachem Matrix. If you are interested, in the media, you can purchase a bottle on Amazon with the following link:
Extra Benefits of Seachem Prime
The Seachem Prime does come with a few benefits that you couldn’t get with Seachem Stability.
The first of which is its ability to remove chlorine and chloramine. Both chemicals, which are present in tap water, will harm the beneficial bacteria as well as the fish in your aquarium.
Prime will also detoxify small traces of heavy metals (including arsenic, copper, lead and mercury) that can be toxic to your aquatic pets.
Last but not least, Seachem Prime will also trigger your fish to develop natural slime coating, which will help them protect against infections.
For Prime, the amount of dosage depends on the situation. Normally, you add 5 mL for every 50 gallons. If you have a huge nitrite spike, you can use 5 times the amount of the normal dose. If your aquarium is very warm (a temperature of more than 30 °C or 86 °F), then you should use a half dose.
For Stability, Seachem recommends adding 5 mL for every 20 gallons if you have an already established fish tank. You can do this once a month, after a water change, after adding a new fish or after medicating your tank.
You can also use Stability for a new fish tank by dosing 5 mL per 10 gallons on the first day and then 5 mL for every 20 gallons on the six following days to help cycle your fish tank.
Can you use Prime and Stability at the same time?
Seachem Prime and Stability will work great together. Although Prime will help detoxify ammonia, nitrites and nitrates for up to 48 hours, there is a chance that you won’t be able to grow enough beneficial bacteria during that timeframe. By adding in bacteria from Stability, you can boost your biological filter quickly in 24 hours.
If you can only pick one, we recommend getting Seachem Stability over Prime. This is because Stability will directly get rid of the ammonia, nitrites and nitrates in your tank after 24 hours.
Seachem Prime is designed to detoxify the aforementioned trio of nitrogen compounds. After around 48 hours, the ammonia, nitrites and nitrates will be reverted back to their toxic forms if you haven’t found a way to completely get rid of them.
With that said, you might want to consider using both Seachem Prime and Seachem Stability at the same time, especially if you have a brand new tank and/or issues with huge spikes of ammonia, nitrites and nitrates. Prime will detoxify the nitrogen compounds, which will then be consumed by the bacteria introduced by Stability. Your fish should be safe at all times with both Prime and Stability.
If you are interested, you can purchase either products on Amazon with the following links: