Q: I keep my bettas in gallon jars, complete water change 1x/weekly.  I rinse jars several times with hot water, swish around, until water runs clear.  DOES THIS ELIMINATE SALT? SHOULD I ADD MORE SALT EACH TIME OR WILL IT ACCUMULATE? HOW DO I KNOW HOW MUCH SALT IS IN THERE?  thanks!

above question submitted by Tressa, Buffalo - NY

Hello my die hard betta fans! It is now Friday and time for me to tackle the column :). 

Since we covered salt in length just 2 weeks ago, (read that article by clicking here) I will not go on and on about salt again this week. Instead let me answer your specific question:

I have never worried about salt in my jars. When I change my water, I make sure to empty the jar 100% and rinse it and then I add the new water which contains the same amount of salt as the old one. There is no accumulation of salt on the jar walls. There will not be a raise of your salt density worth talking about. With a full water change you do not run into problem with salt. The only time you will run into problem is say if you have a large tank with a filter. You know the tank has a filter and is large so you get tempted to get lazy and not do water changes very frequently. Hence the water has the time to evaporate between your water changes. So you then think: Well, I'll just add some water to bring the level back up (looks prettier that way and also filters and heaters run better in many cases). But see, by doing that you do run into a problem: When the water evaporates, THE SALT DOES NOT. So proportionally you now have the same amount of salt in less water (hence more salt density). When you add water (if it also has your usual amount of salt), then you are in essence ADDING salt to the salt that was STILL there, resulting in a higher salt density. Say you did this a bunch of times (cause you were, like, real very very lazy and stuff LOL) and you'll end up with the dead sea in your living room LOL! That is why it is recommended if you add water to top off a tank which water level has dropped DUE TO EVAPORATION, to NOT add salt to the water you are adding. DUH!

Dear Tressa, I hope this answers your question and alleviates your worries :). From Baby and Finley and Mr.181 and Poopie, and Berlin and me, HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY!!

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