Ammonia going down but no nitrites.
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Ammonia going down but no nitrites.

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Ammonia going down but no nitrites.
Old 01-15-2014, 10:40 PM   #1
 
Question Ammonia going down but no nitrites.

I'm in the process of cycling my 20 gallon tank and the ammonia levels have steadily been going down, but there have been no nitrites whatsoever.
Right now my readings are 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites, & 5 nitrates.
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Old 01-15-2014, 10:43 PM   #2
 
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Do you have live plants in your tank?

Also, don't let the ammonia run out, what little bacteria you're starting to grow will starve. When it reaches 1ppm, dose it back up to 4ppm. Plants can eat the ammonia, they won't give you the levels of nitrites (if my memory serves me correctly)

I'f you don't have live plants... well.... I'm stumped then. haha... but yeah, just dose your ammonia back up to 4 and don't let it get past 1ppm.

You're using the API freshwater liquid test kit yes? Not strips? If you're using strips... toss them. They're ridiculously expensive and not worth it because they're very inaccurate.
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Old 01-15-2014, 11:01 PM   #3
 
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Originally Posted by mechanical8dragon View Post
Do you have live plants in your tank?

Also, don't let the ammonia run out, what little bacteria you're starting to grow will starve. When it reaches 1ppm, dose it back up to 4ppm. Plants can eat the ammonia, they won't give you the levels of nitrites (if my memory serves me correctly)

I'f you don't have live plants... well.... I'm stumped then. haha... but yeah, just dose your ammonia back up to 4 and don't let it get past 1ppm.

You're using the API freshwater liquid test kit yes? Not strips? If you're using strips... toss them. They're ridiculously expensive and not worth it because they're very inaccurate.
No, I don't have live plants. But I should have ammonia from my fish I just put in. I must admit I do have the strips though. I had used them before and didn't really have a problem. They were a lot cheaper at the store and I had already spent a lot of money. Plus no one really told me they were bad quality.
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Old 01-15-2014, 11:10 PM   #4
 
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Well, if you're doing a fish-in cycle (which many do not recommend) then never mind on the dosing. You want to do about 10% WCs every day or every other day and you want to be testing every day. Fish-in cycles are a LOT more time-consuming in terms of maintenance because you have to keep close eyes on your water parameters so you don't harm your fish. With fishless cycles.. you just dose up the ammonia and leave it alone for a few weeks (for the most part)

I would HIGHLY recommend to either return the strips (if you have other containers you haven't already opened) or to just throw them out and get the API liquid test kit. Strips are highly inaccurate and more expensive in the long run while the API kit is about 25$ up front and it lasts you a long time... a ... LONG time. The people in the store won't tell you things like that. They just want your money 90% of the time so they won't tell you if a product you buy is 'wrong' or 'faulty'.


As a side note... with a fish-in cycle and using strips to test every day.. you're going to be running out of those reaaaaaal fast. We don't have the 'tubes' of strips here, just the little 4 or 6 piece packs that they charge $8 for. Not worth the investment for those.
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Old 01-15-2014, 11:15 PM   #5
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mechanical8dragon View Post
Well, if you're doing a fish-in cycle (which many do not recommend) then never mind on the dosing. You want to do about 10% WCs every day or every other day and you want to be testing every day. Fish-in cycles are a LOT more time-consuming in terms of maintenance because you have to keep close eyes on your water parameters so you don't harm your fish. With fishless cycles.. you just dose up the ammonia and leave it alone for a few weeks (for the most part)

I would HIGHLY recommend to either return the strips (if you have other containers you haven't already opened) or to just throw them out and get the API liquid test kit. Strips are highly inaccurate and more expensive in the long run while the API kit is about 25$ up front and it lasts you a long time... a ... LONG time. The people in the store won't tell you things like that. They just want your money 90% of the time so they won't tell you if a product you buy is 'wrong' or 'faulty'.


As a side note... with a fish-in cycle and using strips to test every day.. you're going to be running out of those reaaaaaal fast. We don't have the 'tubes' of strips here, just the little 4 or 6 piece packs that they charge $8 for. Not worth the investment for those.
Alright :) I've heard that you shouldn't change your water until the very end. But I will try to invest in the liquid test kit.
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Old 01-15-2014, 11:18 PM   #6
 
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for fish-in cycles? No you want to be doing daily water changes to keep the levels safe for your fish.

Fishless cycles is when you just leave it alone for a few weeks until you get a 0 ammonia 0 nitrite reading and a WHOOOLE lot of Nitrates.
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Old 01-15-2014, 11:22 PM   #7
 
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Originally Posted by mechanical8dragon View Post
for fish-in cycles? No you want to be doing daily water changes to keep the levels safe for your fish.

Fishless cycles is when you just leave it alone for a few weeks until you get a 0 ammonia 0 nitrite reading and a WHOOOLE lot of Nitrates.
Okay, I'll do that now then. I was just afraid I would loose some of the bacteria I put in. That's stupid now that I think about it because they'd be in the substrate.
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Old 01-15-2014, 11:27 PM   #8
 
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actually, though they live on every surface of ur tank, the majority of them LOVE your filter media cus its oxygen rich. thats why your not suppose to change your filter media without seeding the new replacement
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Old 01-15-2014, 11:47 PM   #9
 
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actually, though they live on every surface of ur tank, the majority of them LOVE your filter media cus its oxygen rich. thats why your not suppose to change your filter media without seeding the new replacement
How do you do that?
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Old 01-15-2014, 11:53 PM   #10
 
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When your filter media starts to look about ready to fall apart you just want to slide the 'new media' in beside it and give it few weeks I would imagine before removing the old media so the new media can take over. You never want to just take out the old media and put in new without seeding it, it will cause your tank to relapse and you'll basically have a 'mini-cycle' where you'll experience ammonia and nitrite spikes that, if not caught, could kill your fish.

You want to make sure that when your media starts to look dirty that you gently clean it in emptied tank water during water changes. I know for mine i have two large sponges in mine and some bio ceramic balls so when it looks dirty or there is debris caught in the filter I'll dunk each piece in my water bucket with the dirty tank water and gently wash them clean before putting them back. When it comes time for me to change sponges I'll remove one and place in a new one (great thing about haveing a filter that requires two sponges and not one, double the space woot woot) that way the 2nd one can seed the knew, then after awhile I'll remove the last old one and put in another new one. :)
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