95 galloon set up help

Taritus

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Hello all
So I'm buying a 95 galloon tank from my friends father and it comes with the tank , stand, air pump filter and everything else for $250
Which is a steal right ?! But they'rs a catch
I have to take the tanks previous inhabitant which is a small, juvenile red belly pirahna
It's not that I don't want the fish but I have to get rid of my smaller tank for the big one I'm buying and I'd rather not put my fish in theyr with it so imma see if I can convince him to keep it
But now to see up I have a few questions
1.how long does it need to cycle ?
2. Sand bottom okay for mystery snails?
3. I keep the water medium in hardness is the best way to do that for new tank just to add distilled water with some conditioned tap?
4. Although my fish are cichlids they don't care about plants so I'd like to know what plant spreads well in sand like hair grass maybe?
All help appreciated I know it's a lot to ask but getting a new tank is enough work but throwing a blood thirsty demon in the mix is stress full
 

tyguy7760

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1) if there is fish in the tank now, it is likely already cycled. And as long as the tank doesn't go more than a few days with no fish, the bacteria should be fine. You can always buy a bottle of TSS+ to boost the bacteria when you add new fish
2) Yes
3) I would not do distilled water unless you are ready to completely re-mineralize the water. I would just use straight tap and test for hardness. If it's too soft then you can add something like crushed coral or cuttlebone in the filter/substrate to boost it back up
4) I'll leave this question to the more experienced plant people but I know that dwarf sag is an easy low maintenance plant that can spread quickly in the right conditions.
 
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Taritus

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So if I drain the water and transport it and fill it up it'll be good to go that day?
Can u explain remineralize to me because I add distilled to the tank now to keep its hardness in middle
 

tyguy7760

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Oh ok i wasn't aware you are doing tap + distilled. That is fine. Is your tap exceptionally hard?

As long as the filter media stays wet in dechlorinated water, it will be fine. So if you drain the tank just make sure your media stays wet
 
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Taritus

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I live in Tennessee and it's pretty hard because when I started all I used was tap and got hardness build up fast
Oh alright thanks!
 

tyguy7760

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It would be beneficial to get a good idea of what all 3 levels are. If it's not on the glass I would just clean the lid ever so often instead of continually mixing distilled water with tap.
 
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