Seachem AmGuard is designed to detoxify ammonia for a maximum of 72 hours.
If this water conditioner doesn’t appear to be working as advertised, then you can take a look at this troubleshooting article from Aquarium Blueprints to see what you can do to make it more effective.
1. Before we start, it is important to note that Seachem AmGuard does not directly remove ammonia. Instead, it temporary detoxify the nitrogen compound for 3 days. Therefore, ammonia will become toxic again after 72 hours.
To combat the toxicity, we recommend dosing AmGuard daily until you find a more permanent way to remove the chemical compound from your tank waters. The normal dosage for this solution is 5 mL, or a capful, for every 50 gallons (or 200 liters) of the water volume in your aquarium.
You can reduce ammonia levels by doing water changes, adding more beneficial bacteria and using live plants. To find out more how you can remove ammonia, as well as nitrites, in your fish tank, we recommend taking a look at this guide.
2. If you have over 5 ppm of ammonia concentration, then AmGuard won’t be able to detoxify the full amount of the toxic compound.
To test for the ammonia level in your aquarium, you need to use an aquarium test kit. If you are looking for one, then you might want to check out the Seachem MultiTest Ammonia Test Kit (which you can find on Amazon with this link).
To deal with a higher concentration of ammonia, you need to add AmGuard at a rate of 5 mL per every 10 gallons or 40 liters of tank water for every 1 ppm of ammonia.
3. It is also possible that you could be overdosing Seachem AmGuard.
If you add more than 5 mL for every 10 gallons or 40 liters of tank water, then the oxygen level in your aquarium may start to deplete, potentially leading to health hazards for the inhabitants.
In the event of an overdose, we recommend doing a water change if you see your fish having a hard time breathing and/or acting erratically.
4. As we mentioned above, AmGuard will deplete the oxygen in your tank. Using this product with other reducing agents such as some medications may end up severely depleting the oxygen level.
In order to combat this, you can try stimulating more water flow in your tank by adding an air stone and/or increasing its air flow rate. You can also try increasing the water flow rate of your filter as well as moving the filter’s output nozzle to above the water surface.
If possible, you can try avoid using AmGuard and the other product at the same time. Instead, we recommend waiting at least 24 hours after dosing AmGarud if you want to add the other product to your fish tank.
5. If the temperature in your aquarium is above 86 °F (or 30 °C), then Seachem recommends that you avoid using AmGuard.
Instead, you should lower the temperature to a cooler level, if your fish and/or other aquatic pets are able to tolerate it, before adding the solution.