Help cycle crashed after cleaning

isaacfish

Yesterday I went about my weekly water change as usual. I did about a 40 percent which is the norm for me. I noticed when doing the water change my flow from my external filter was quite low as I have not cleaned it since Its been cycled. I took off the hoses, as they were filled with lots of brown gun and used a hose brush to clean them. Then with the water I drained from my aquarium i simply took out the trays and dunked them to clear off all the sludge and mulm etc. Everything was golden. went backtogether and running in maybe 15 minutes. Everything stayed wet and I did not remove any of the old media, filter floss or sponge pads.

I tried to put my spray bar facing towards and at a downward angle for the back glass as I wanted to create circulation for air exchange but the surface movement was destroying my new floating plants. Then this morning I woke up and turned on my lights, all the fish were gasping at the surface. I immediately tested with a API master kit and got a reading of

Ammonia .25
Nitrite 0.0
Nitrate 5
ph: 6.6
Kh 2
Gh 3

temp is consistant at 27 to 27.5 which is controlled by 2 controlers one for heaters and one for cooling fans.

I immediately put in Fritz complete and within 5 minutes the fish were acting normal again. I conducted a 50 percent waterchange and everything is good fish wise

Did i clean my tank to early?

Tank info:

110 gallon
heavily planted
moderately stocked (most of the fish are young)
I feed 2 times every other day. once in the AM and PM as most the fish are young and I like to do 2 small meals

The tank has been running for almost 3 months now without an issue at all. No ammonia, no nitrates, and low levels of nitrate as I keep up with my waterchanges as I have a low KH and like to keep my water fresh.

I have stocked my aquarium responsibly. Getting a small group of younger fish (6-8) at a time and adding them a week apart.

I imagine it must be the cleaning, did I clean to much? my flow was at least at 50 percent which is why I did it. I have not had any algae issues in the tank, a little bit of diatoms but its been very minor and that cleared up a month ago.

I lost 2 of my beloved and favorite fish, colombian (red blue) tetras and feel horrible about it.

All advice is welcome. I want to ensure that I learn so If its something I did (i imagine it is) it never happens again.
I also need to add, i tedt my tap water everytime before waterchanges to ensure it is ehat i expect.

Ph 6.6
Ammonia 0
Nitirite 0
Nitrate 0
 

GlennO

Sounds like you did everything right. I wonder if there was so much sludge in the filter that you lost a lot of BB cleaning it? I wouldn't have thought so but it's the only thing I can think of. Maybe rinse the media more frequently from now on.
 

isaacfish

Sounds like you did everything right. I wonder if there was so much sludge in the filter that you lost a lot of BB cleaning it? I wouldn't have thought so but it's the only thing I can think of. Maybe rinse the media more frequently from now on.
Maybe thats it. Its all i can think of that could have happened... its weird ive done the same thing on other thanks and they are completely finem other than that i could only imagine a fish died and is in a cave or crevice that i cant see or reach without tearing apart the tank. It looks like all my fish are there and well but its hard to tell with lots of small fish
 

MasterPython

You have some very soft water. Is it always like that?

I don't have any experience with water like that but know the bacteria are different and the PH can actually swing unlike PH8.2 water. You might need to do smaller ones.
 

Nick72

I doubt you upset your beneficial bacteria.

Your fish are unlikely to even notice 0.25 ammonia and it’s a common reading with an API test kit even when it’s actually 0.

A heavily planted tank like yours will make short work of that level of ammonia.

Could you have forgotten to add conditioner? Fish reacting to chlorine?
 

SparkyJones

Sounds more like a dissolved oxygen issue
.25 ammonia at pH6.6 shouldn't be doing much of anything it's almost all ammonium.
 

MacZ

Sounds more like a dissolved oxygen issue
.25 ammonia at pH6.6 shouldn't be doing much of anything it's almost all ammonium.
Agree.
I tried to put my spray bar facing towards and at a downward angle for the back glass as I wanted to create circulation for air exchange but the surface movement was destroying my new floating plants.
And there is the likely reason. For better gas exchange you turn the spraybar UPWARDS not downwards.
 

isaacfish

Thanks for your replies, spray bar went bsck this morning. No problems. Live and learn. Still feel terrible about the whole thing. Though. Fish are happy and healthy
 

GlennO

Sounds more like a dissolved oxygen issue
.25 ammonia at pH6.6 shouldn't be doing much of anything it's almost all ammonium.
However the OP said the issue resolved immediately after adding Fritz complete?
 

SparkyJones

However the OP said the issue resolved immediately after adding Fritz complete?
Unless it's coincidental and it crashes overnight again with the lights off.
By the time the fritz was added the lights might have been on for a while and photosynthesis was rasing the O2 levels again.

I dunno, just saying, .25 ammonia shouldn't hurt anything at pH6.6
 

isaacfish

Unless it's coincidental and it crashes overnight again with the lights off.
By the time the fritz was added the lights might have been on for a while and photosynthesis was rasing the O2 levels again.

I dunno, just saying, .25 ammonia shouldn't hurt anything at pH6.6
24 hours later with spraybar facing up and towards the front, testing 0,0 all is good.
 

GlennO

Unless it's coincidental and it crashes overnight again with the lights off.
By the time the fritz was added the lights might have been on for a while and photosynthesis was rasing the O2 levels again.

I dunno, just saying, .25 ammonia shouldn't hurt anything at pH6.6
Agreed. It would have to have spiked much higher than that before recovering.
 

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