cycling help!

  1. Lindy Initiate Member

    Hello all! I set up my very first tank on June 1 and not knowing any better took the lfs advise and added fish the next day. The lady told me it would be fine to add 5 cheery barbs and 5 black skirt tetras so of course I did ! Now I'm struggling to get through this cycle and need some help. currently my levels are 2ppm ammonia 3-5ppm nitrite ( not sure if the color looks as dark as 5 but not as light as 2) and 0 nitrate. My tank has been this way for about two weeks I've been doing 25% pwc every other day but my levels never really change although i do think the ammonia may have dropped some. What am I doing wrong? Is it stalled or is it normal for it to take this long?

    Also I took a water sample to the lfs just to double check my readings and the lady told my i should never change the water while cycling as it would never cycle even with fish which I know isnt true from all the reading I've been doing. She also said I should use spring water instead of tab because we have bad water here. tap water reads .25 ppm ammonia .25ppm nitrite 8 ph

    29 gallon tank
    whisper 10-30i filter
    temp 76
    ammonia 2ppm
    nitrite 3-5ppm
    nitrate 0
    ph 8 (same as tap )
     
  2. Jasperdog Initiate Member

    wait more
     

  3. Adam55 Well Known Member Member

    Hi Lindy, and welcome to FL.

    It does sound like you were given some bad advice. We've all been there. So, those levels are pretty high right now. What, if anything, was added to the tank to treat the water?

    You might want to do a larger water change to help knock down the ammonia and nitrite levels in the tank. Once that is done, you can add a product designed to make the water more safe for your fish. Most of us here use SeaChem Prime to treat our water. Do you have something like that? And how are the fish doing? Are they hanging out at the surface a lot?

    Also, the LFS employee technically was correct that you should wait for two weeks, but that is ONLY if you added Tetra Safe Start to establish beneficial bacteria in the tank. If you added TSS, you leave the water alone for two weeks. If you did not and she told you to wait anyway, that's incorrect advice.
     

  4. Lindy Initiate Member

    The only thing I've add to the tank is the aquasafe plus. But I'm willing to get whatever y'all think is best! The fish seem to be doing fine so far they aren't as active as they used to be but they still eat good and I haven't noticed any of them staying at the top, ImageUploadedByFish Lore Aquarium Fish Forum1405270343.713725.jpg they all stay mid tank.


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  5. Adam55 Well Known Member Member

    OK, I'm not quite as familiar with AquaSafe Plus but I know a little about it. I'm sure someone here has used it before. Plus, from my understanding, removes the chlorine and chloramine, and it also does help to establish the beneficial bacteria. I'm just not sure what it does with the ammonia and nitrite in the water. Prime binds those things into a non-toxic form while your bacteria expands and consumes them. I also think that the LFS sold you too many fish at once. Even tanks that have been running for years can encounter cycle issues if too much new stock is added at once, but the bacteria is especially vulnerable in a tank that is going through the cycling process.

    And your tank looks very nice.
     
  6. Lindy Initiate Member

    Thanks! I will try and get some prime today then and add that too. After adding that what should I do with water changes? Every other day, once a week, none?


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  7. Adam55 Well Known Member Member

    If you get Prime then you will only have to add Prime. It'll take care of the heavy metals in the water, as well as binding the ammonia and nitrite. Your water changes can still be weekly unless there is a pressing need to do one sooner.
     
  8. Lindy Initiate Member

    Great thanks you so much!


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  9. Linda4088 Well Known Member Member

    I read somewhere on this site about Bio Spira to speed up cycling.