Help With Tank Cycle

billy d

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Hey, I have a 10 gal tank..about 4 days into my cycle with 3 guppies in my tank. Just a quick question about my filter..besides my filter I have a Nitrate + Nitrite Pad that the water flows through before it goes back to the tank. Will this pad mess up my cycle? Pls help! Here’s a link to the pad I’m talking about. Thanks!!

Seapora Cut-To-Size Filter Pads
 
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billy d

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Any help or suggestions are greatly appreciated. I am am pretty new to this whole thing but have read forums, researched a bit and somewhat understand the nitrogen cycle. Let me explain my situation. I have a 10 gal tank with 3 guppies and a Aqueon 10 Quietflow filter w/ an ammonia media pad insert (included when you buy). So I have been trying to cycle for two weeks today.. We will start with the first week. I only had the test strips( I know, not accurate) but was doing PWCs daily of 25% using big als water conditioner. A few days past and I went out and bought a searchem ammonia reading that sticks to the inside of the tank..as I know ammonia and nitrites are fish killers. Anyways for during the first week my readings they were pretty much a constant PH 8~, ammonia .25-.50ppm(hard to tell ), nitrite 0 ppm and nitrate 10-20ppm. As the first week went by I was getting frustrated with the readings so after some research went out and bought an API master kit, stability and prime. After i purchased I went home and tested my tap water for ammonia..believe it or not it’s somewhere between .25 and .50ppm (yellow at 5 mins and 2 mins later has a green colour)..and I started to get concerned..So once I picked up the stability and prime I started dosing daily with my 25% PWCs. During this time (second week, I’d try to skip a day for my PWCs and my readings still have not changed since I started using prime and stability. Readings are still as followed PH 8~, ammonia .50ppm, nitrite 0, and nitrate 10-20ppm. Kinda stuck on how far through if even in the cycle I am. My guppies seem to be stress free and swim around freely. Any help would be nice. Thanks
 

TombedOrchestra

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Others on here would probably be able to shed light on this a bit more than I could... but here's my thought...

You have nitrate readings... which means the conversion from Ammonia --> Nitrites --> Nitrates is occurring. You have NO nitrites, which is good. But your ammonia remains. I think your tanks is fully cycled BUT ... you said the ammonia from the tap is 0.25 -0.5 .. I think that's your issue. You're putting water that has ammonia into the tank. I don't think you can expect the ammonia to go down until you change the water source to something that doesn't have ammonia.

Those more advanced than I correct if I'm wrong!
 
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billy d

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Really appreciate the quick response but if the cycle was complete should my ammonia not be declining slowly? Even if I have a reading of it in my tap water youd think that the times I’ve skipped a day for the pwc I should see atleast some difference in the readings but literally nothing has changed

From my notes my readings have not changed from day 1 of the cycle. I kinda feel like an idiot here lol and a bit lost. Any help is appreciated
 
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TombedOrchestra

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Really appreciate the quick response but if the cycle was complete should my ammonia not be declining slowly? Even if I have a reading of it in my tap water youd think that the times I’ve skipped a day for the pwc I should see atleast some difference in the readings but literally nothing has changed
I'm not sure exactly how long it takes to convert all the way through the process from ammonia to nitrates. But, my guess is still the tap water. Even going to every other day with 25% PWC, you're still adding water with ammonia at the same level into the tank. Whatever process was started moving the ammonia through to nitrites and nitrates is then negated with the PWC adding the ammonia back in.

If you're tap is really reading at 0.5 ammonia, I'd recommend finding another source of water. You don't want to be adding ammonia into the tank every water change.
 
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billy d

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Thanks, I’ll try to find a new water source and see if things change.
 

pugletfan

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My guess is that you're just not quite cycled (growing your beneficial bacteria in your filter media). It takes time for the bacteria colony to be strong and established. I would keep doing what you're doing.

Do you have Prime water conditioner? I forgot if you shared that. If so, each day test your water. If ammonia + nitrite <1 ppm, dose your tank with Prime. If ammonia + nitrite is =1 or >1, do a 50% water change and then dose your tank with Prime. Prime binds ammonia and nitrite up to 1 ppm (ammonia + nitrite) for 24 to 48 hours.

Do you have an API Freshwater Master Test Kit?

It would not be a bad idea to test your tap water just so you know your parameters (pH, ammonia, nitrite, nitrate). I don't think you need to change your water source. Most people use treated tap water with no problems.
 
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billy d

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My guess is that you're just not quite cycled (growing your beneficial bacteria in your filter media). It takes time for the bacteria colony to be strong and established. I would keep doing what you're doing.

Do you have Prime water conditioner? I forgot if you shared that. If so, each day test your water. If ammonia + nitrite <1 ppm, dose your tank with Prime. If ammonia + nitrite is =1 or >1, do a 50% water change and then dose your tank with Prime. Prime binds ammonia and nitrite up to 1 ppm (ammonia + nitrite) for 24 to 48 hours.

Do you have an API Freshwater Master Test Kit?

It would not be a bad idea to test your tap water just so you know your parameters (pH, ammonia, nitrite, nitrate). I don't think you need to change your water source. Most people use treated tap water with no problems.
Yea I started using prime and stability at the start of the second week so really it’s only been a week..and I do have the API freshwater master test kit! So glad I bought it! I’ll have to test my tap water..I heard leaving a cup overnight brings out the true readings? Or is that not true ? Lol

Would I be doing a tank volume dose of prime @ the 50% WC and also today was the 7th day of stability..Should i discontinue after today? Or continue to dose at my WCs?

hey there, been cycling a 10 gal for two weeks now w/ 3 guppies. Started using prime and stability at the start of the second week instead of big als water conditioner. Just have some questions as my readings have not budged At all since I started stability and prime. I am doing daily pwcs of 25% (sometimes every other day) and dosing with stability and prime each time..my readings all week have been a constant ph 8~, ammonia .5ppm, nitrite 0, nitrate 10-20ppm..my question is, should I be holding off my pwcs and letting the ammonia spike? While still dosing with prime every 24hrs? Also I’m 7 days into stability..do I stop dosing now? Or continue when I do pwcs? Any advice is helpful!!
 
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TexasDomer

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Can you test your tap for ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates?

You can reduce water changes - when ammonia + nitrites are > 1 ppm, do a large (50-75%) water change and dose with Prime. When ammonia + nitrites are < 1 ppm, you can jus dose Prime.

You can continue Stability or stop it, but I might still continue it since you're still cycling. When it's fully cycled, you can stop
 
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billy d

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Can you test your tap for ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates?

You can reduce water changes - when ammonia + nitrites are > 1 ppm, do a large (50-75%) water change and dose with Prime. When ammonia + nitrites are < 1 ppm, you can jus dose Prime.

You can continue Stability or stop it, but I might still continue it since you're still cycling. When it's fully cycled, you can stop
Is it true if you leave tap water in a cup overnight before testing the readings could be different? I tested my tap water last night and the ammonia was atleast .25ppm but didn’t test for nitrate or nitrite I will do that shortly.
 

TexasDomer

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It shouldn't affect ammonia, nitrites, or nitrates, but leaving it out may give you a different pH reading.
 

TexasDomer

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The pH change isn't concerning - the increase in pH after leaving it out is from the gassing off of CO2.

Those are the same pics, I think.
 
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billy d

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Nope
The pH change isn't concerning - the increase in pH after leaving it out is from the gassing off of CO2.

Those are the same pics, I think.
No for real my readings from my tap are identical as my tank..I’ve been testing my tank everyday and I’ve had not one change in any of the readings..in literally mind boggled

Testing again right now I’ll post pics when tests devolope in 5 mins

Here’s the second set of tests i did. Everything other than ph is the same and nothing has changed all week..not the slightest . First is my 10 gal test and second is my tap water. 4DD7CF16-DE7B-4F13-81F9-DA9821FB2E86.jpeg AEB9B434-0A10-47E5-97BE-8FB6CA6134EE.jpeg
 
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TexasDomer

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Hmm, then your tank isn't close to being cycled, as the nitrates are from your tap. I would decrease your water changes as I mentioned above and keep an eye on parameters!
 
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billy d

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Hmm, then your tank isn't close to being cycled, as the nitrates are from your tap. I would decrease your water changes as I mentioned above and keep an eye on parameters!
Thank you sir, I will hold off on the pwcs until ammonia or nitrite are atleast 1ppm, once I see those readings I’ll do the 50% WC with prime and stability. I’ll also continue to dose the tank every 24 hours with prime and stability and hope I get a change in readings sometime soon. Thanks for your help and responses I’ll post back when my readings change
 
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billy d

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trying to cycle my 10 gal for two weeks now and have had no changes in reading yet. My aqueon quietflow 10 came with an ammonia reducing media That sits below the filter pad. Would this hinder or slow down my cycle ? Thanks
 
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billy d

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Had the tank going for two weeks now..doing fish in cycle with 3 guppies. During the first week i was using big als water conditioner..finally got some prime and stability and started using that instead at the end of week one. My tap water has atleast .25ppm of ammonia maybe even .50ppm, 0 nitrites and 5-10ppm nitrates. I’ve tried holding back on the water changes for an extra day or two to see if I could get ammonia up a bit more before doing a a pwc but my readings still have not changed..I have had no change in any of my readings since I’ve started trying to cycle. (I guess it’s only been about 8 days since I started prime and stability) maybe I’m just being impatient? Is an ammonia reducer insert bad for my cycle?
 
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