I need help guy's. Here's the back story.
About a month ago I bought a 55 gallon. I stupidly listened to my friend at the pet store and added 2 Gourami, 2 Silvertip Sharks, 2 Rainbow Sharks, and 2 silver dollars on day 1. (yes I know...It's been years since I've had a tank and I forgot all about cycling)
We started off with a UGF and Circulation pump. After the first week or so Ammonia levels started rising. Started water changing with with Aqueon Conditioner with no luck. I was told by the LFS (Petco...) that I needed to use a Powerhead as well to help filter. So I started running both filters and Ammonia kept rising. I consulted the LFS and they told me to change filter pads in the powerhead (Big mistake) so after 2 more pads, and water changes Ammonia is still up.
By week 3 I got it to .5 or so and it stayed stable there, but still no Nitrite or Nitrate spikes. Both at zero the whole time so I'm just assuming the tank has never cycled.
The last few days it has spiked to around 2ppm Ammonia, still 0 No2, No3. PH is 7.6 but we have very hard water here.
I went ahead and switched to Prime with my water changes, but over the last 2 days the levels have remained. I check levels before the changes/prime so try and avoid false results.
The fish are all fine, active, eating and very mobile so I'm really curious how much these levels are affecting them.
Either way, I need to get this figured out quick. I really have no desire to loose these expensive fish.
I also now realize don't listen to my friends, or Petco.....I have since been reading non stop everyday on every aspect of tanks, fish etc to get knowledge, but I'm unsure what to do in this instance.
My plan is to keep doing water changes with Prime, but I was hoping maybe to get some more insight.
Thanks and sorry for the long post.