20 gallon tank setup

  1. w

    werwer2016 Valued Member Member

    Being a newbie, I need some help setting up my 20 gallon tank I just bought the other day. I got water in it, decorations and prime. Now should I go for artificial plants or real plants. I have three 4 month old mollies, an adult mollie plus four cora catfish so I'm hoping I finally have enough room for them.
     
  2. FreshAquariums

    FreshAquariums Valued Member Member

    I would say real plants because they take in CO2 in the tank and give of oxygen therefor helping aerate the water helping the fish breath. and they just look prettier then plastic that doesn't move, plants sway kind of lol
     
  3. el337

    el337 Fishlore Legend Member

    Unfortunately, a 20g is still too small for 4 mollies. Would you be able to exchange it for at least a 29g?
     
  4. OP
    OP
    w

    werwer2016 Valued Member Member

    After I put in all my decorations and add water to the tank how long should I wait before I put in any fish. This is a 20 gallon tank. Also should I add any chemicals when I first setup a tank.
     
  5. el337

    el337 Fishlore Legend Member

    Did you rehome all the fish you had? If so, are you planning on a fishless cycle?
     
  6. OP
    OP
    w

    werwer2016 Valued Member Member

    I rehomed all my fish but not sure how long I need to wait after putting water in the tank to get fish. Also do I add any chemicals after I put the water in.
     
  7. el337

    el337 Fishlore Legend Member

    So you want to do a cycle with fish? From your profile, I see you don't know about the nitrogen cycle so that would be the absolute first thing you'll want to learn about since understanding that would help you to care for your fish.

    I also see you have a pH and ammonia test. Are they liquid tests? You'll also need tests to check for nitrite and nitrate. You'll need a water conditioner and a bacteria supplement. I'd recommend getting Seachem Prime as a water conditioner and either Tetra SafeStart Plus or Seachem Stability as a bacteria supplement.

    Have you also thought about what fish you wanted to stock with?
     
  8. OP
    OP
    w

    werwer2016 Valued Member Member

    Not to familiar with the Nitrogen cycle. I don't have a test kit for Nitrates and Nitrites. The test kit I have for ammonia and PH is a liquid kit. I also have Prime conditioner and Accu - Clear. Not sure about what type of fish to put in. My wife and I like the Corydora catfish so most likely will get them. The Safe Start is that something I use when I first add water to the tank.
     
  9. pRoy33

    pRoy33 Valued Member Member

  10. el337

    el337 Fishlore Legend Member

    Please read up on the nitrogen cycle as that is the most important part of fish keeping. I would also get the liquid tests for nitrates and nitrites as well since those are important to know.

    I wouldn't cycle with corys as they are sensitive to uncycled tanks. Is this a 20 high or long? Have you considered fishless cycling with pure ammonia?

    Whether you decide to do a fish-in or fishless cycle, after adding the water and Prime (not sure what Accu Clear is but it's not needed), you would add your ammonia source whether it's pure ammonia or the fish and the bacteria supplement. If you're using TSS+, you'd need to wait 24 hours after using Prime.

    Your profile says you have a Tetra whisper 10 filter? If so, you are underfiltered and I would upgrade or add another filter to get a total of 200 gph.
     
  11. OP
    OP
    w

    werwer2016 Valued Member Member

    I read the article on The Nitrogen Cycle. I'll do the cycle Fishless as we are in no hurry to stock it. We want the tank cycled first. When I got the tank they give me a Top Fin 20 Filter. I'll get some TSS+ for the cycling. Thanks for all your help, sure appreciated.

    Forgot to mention that the 20gal is a high one.
     
  12. el337

    el337 Fishlore Legend Member

    Here are instructions to using pure ammonia but I would only dose up to 2ppm and not the 5-6ppm indicated in the thread. Add the TSS+ at the same time and monitor your parameters daily for pH, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate. With TSS+ though you can't do water changes for 2 weeks as indicated in the thread provided above.

    https://www.fishlore.com/fishforum/...9627-ammonia-instructions-fishless-cycle.html

    You can start a log to track your progress daily if you'd like.
     
  13. OP
    OP
    w

    werwer2016 Valued Member Member

    Thanks for all your help.