Cycling Aquarium With Fluval Cycle Help

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by Pure_squeezed, Apr 17, 2017.

  1. Pure_squeezed

    Pure_squeezed New Member Member

    I used Fluval's "Cycle" biological booster to cycle my aquarium per directions on the bottle. I don't quite understand how this is supposed to work. Was I supposed to actually "ADD FISH IMMEDIATELY" like the bottle said for it to work properly? Was I supposed to feed my aquarium ammonia during the 3 day dosing period?

    Here are my readings: using api freshwater master kit

    Water source: rain water
    ph 7.2
    ammonia 0.25 ppm
    nitrites 0 ppm
    nitrites 0 ppm

    Day 1:
    ph 6.6
    ammonia 0.50 ppm
    nitrites 0 ppm
    nitrates 5.0 ppm

    Day 2:
    ph 6.6
    ammonia 1.0 ppm
    nitrites 0 ppm
    nitrates 10-20 ppm

    Day 3:
    ph 6.6
    ammonia 1.0 ppm
    nitrites 0 ppm
    nitrates 10-20 ppm


    I'm not really sure what my aquarium is doing. I'm getting nitrates but I'm not getting nitrites?... and the ammonia isn't going down. So where are all these nitrates coming from? Should I do a water change then add fish?
     
  2. Nanologist

    Nanologist Well Known Member Member

    You will need a source of ammonia for the bacteria to eat and flourish. It's recommended not to do a cycle with fish in since it is stressful on them and can even kill them if not kept in check. You can use pure ammonia, ghost feed (add small amounts of fish food daily like you're feeding one) or put a raw piece of shrimp or fish in that will decay and create ammonia. I recommend checking out this post Ammonia instructions for a fishless cycle

    As far as the nitrates go. Nitrates are extremely common in measurable levels in your tap water. I would test some of the water you're using before adding anything and see what levels you get. You may even find measurable amounts of ammonia in it.
     
  3. OP
    OP
    Pure_squeezed

    Pure_squeezed New Member Member

    I posted the test results for the water I used. I used rainwater I collected and it had no nitrates measured.

    Ok, I will retest and shake even more out of the bottle! If i get nitrate reading, what would that mean? Seems like the little bit of ammonia isnt going away like it should with all the Fluval bacteria.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 19, 2017
  4. bgclarke

    bgclarke Well Known Member Member

    I've used a different product and have seen nitrates before nitrites showed up.

    It is odd that your ammonia is rising apparently on it's own.
    Have you added anything to your tank besides the Cycle, such as food?
     
  5. Nanologist

    Nanologist Well Known Member Member

    The bacteria starters are no replacement for the real deal. They can help speed up the process but are still quite unproven to how well they work. I used Seachem Stability and cycling the tank still took as long as some tanks that had no bacteria starter added. Every cycle is kind of unique and it's just a waiting game. The only thing you can do is to make sure there's enough ammonia and the proper environment for it to grow and then patience.

    Also, I've read that it can even take longer doing a fish-in cycle because you have to keep ammonia levels low enough for the fish to survive, but that just means there's less food for the bacteria to flourish. When there's no fish you don't have to worry if the ammonia spikes up to 4 ppm.
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2017
  6. OP
    OP
    Pure_squeezed

    Pure_squeezed New Member Member

    I added rock and plants from a lfs. Can decaying plants cause ammonia? Cause one wasnt doing to good so i threw it out. Im using fluval stratum.

    If i take my brothers filter media and just set it in my tank will it cycle instantly? Ive heard that works, but j dont see how its different than adding a bottle bacteria.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 19, 2017




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