Old but a New Setup!
I am going to be cleaning out an old 29 gallon fish tank that has been left outside. After I clean out the tank, I am going to add the gravel, water (with tap water conditioner), heater and filter. I normally set the heater at 78 degrees F and let the tank's filter run at least 24 hrs before adding fish. I then add 2 fish to start the nitrogen cycle.
Question: what other products should I be adding to the water? I've heard that adding API's Quick Start or Tetra's Safe Start are good products to use? I want to update myself from the old ways of cycling a tank. I want to learn a more efficient and effective way of cycling a freshwater tank.
If you can, use Seachem Prime as your conditioner. In addition to dechlorination, it has binders to detoxify ammonia and nitrites which can aid in nitrosomonas and nitrobacter development.
The very best beneficial bacteria seed is filter or substrate from a healthy, established tank. Failing this, a commercial bacteria seed can be very helpful. There are many choices these days (Tetra Safestart, Seachem Stability, API QuickStart, Dr Tim's One and Only, Aquabella).
As you cycle, you will need a good test kit. The consensus agreement is that the API Freshwater Master test kit is best. Watch for an ammonia spike followed by a spike in nitrites. Also watch the fish for the slightest signs of stress (odd behavior, clamped fins), Be prepared to do a partial water change (w/Prime).
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