02-22-2011, 06:33 PM
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Yep. 25% is fine but you may need more if ammonia and nitrite don't drop to zero yet. Ammonia is also more toxic at higher pH (alkaline side; more than 7) and higher temp so you may need to monitor the ammonia. No need to fiddle with your pH though as stable pH is much better than changing pH.
Check out this ammonia toxicity table. Ammonia Toxicity No! Don't clean the filter! What filter media are in it currently? No need to carbon if you already are using one. It's disposable anyway so there's no point with that and carbon is more useful just to remove medicines, tannins, odors and other contaminants. You need the likes of ceramic rings, lava rocks, sponges, filter flosses in your filter. These can allow your beneficial bacteria to colonize to stabilize nitrogen cycle.
If you have a friend who has a healthy established tank, ask him for a portion of his established filter media to instantly cycle the tank. Clean the filter only when it starts clogging or the output flow slowing down. And the filter media need not be replaced until they're completely worn out and it takes years for that to happen. Use dechlorinated tank water when cleaning the filter media. Hot water, chlorinated water, and detergents can kill your beneficial bacteria so avoid those.
And Prime is a dechlorinator by Seachem that binds chlorine and chloramine, detoxify heavy metals, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate. It may exhibit sulfuric smell but that's normal for Prime. It's better than most dechlorinators sold. And I don't like aloe-vera based conditioners. They can force your fish to produce excessive slime coat which can suffocate them if trapped in their gills.