How freakin' long?

Firecracker
  • #1
Sorry, not a patient person

Ammonia is rising. Tank has been setup for about a week, cycling with food flakes (all I had). Temp is 76. Water looked white/cloudy a couple of days ago, clearer now.

HOW LONG DOES THIS TAKE? I want to get fish!
 
capekate
  • #2
Sorry Firecracker... its going to take a bit longer than a week to cycle your tank! lol.. I understand the frustration on wanting to add fish asap, but for the sake of your fish, I would just wait.
Its ok that the ammonia levels are rising, it all helps the nitrogen cycle process.
It took me about 29 days to cycle a 55 gallon tank fishless. But it was so much easier than cycling with fish which took almost three months by having to continually do water changes to insure the safety of the fish in the tank.
Just be patient.. the end result will produce success for you! ;D

Ohh btw, you may want to try raising that temperature to at least 80-82* that can help it along faster...
~ kate
 
Firecracker
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
I know it will take more than a week, but I hope it doesn't take two MONTHS! none of the articles I have read about the cycle gave much of a timeline. I suppose I can wait another 3 weeks ... but it's boring, LOL.

I think the heater is on high, I don't think it will go any warmer. I got the one that said for up to 30 gallons, but maybe it isn't quite large enough?
 
tkfury
  • #4
You're going to want a heater that will allow you to raise the temp to at 82F. If you end up with ick the best way to get rid of it is to raise the temp to 82 and do frequent water changes. Whats brand is the heater?

(I turned on the bubbles in the tank while cycling - it made it a little easier just beable able to see some movement in the tank, if that helps ^_~)
 
Firecracker
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
I don't remember the brand. I wonder if I can return it? I will have to double check the setting, because it might not be on its highest. My fiance put it together while I was rinsing the gravel.

I have the bubbles on too. Just because I like them, not because I know a darn thing about what I'm doing

I got the heater at Petsmart, and I don't know if their web site shows all of the products they carry in the stores or not, but this packaging looks familiar:


It said "for up to 30 gallon tanks" on it, so maybe I should have gotten a bigger one.
 
COBettaCouple
  • #6
Have you been to The Fish Den? They carry BioSpira. It's not cheap, but it'll let you put fish in right away. Just check the expiration date on the packet.
 
lilsoccakid
  • #7
Firecracker
  • Thread Starter
  • #8
OK it's a Top Fin, 150 watt. and it's on setting 4 out of 5. So it might not be big enough. Does PetSmart let you exchange this stuff? I mean, it was advertised for a 30 gal, and if it's not heating it enough ...

6 weeks!
 
COBettaCouple
  • #9
We cycled a tank in 3 weeks, but we fed it consistently with flakes, ran aeration in it and turned the heater to maximum, bringing our water temp to over 90. We were in Florida then, so I set the tank up on the back porch and that summer heat gave the cycle even more of a boost.

We have a 75W heater (Visitherm Stealth) that heats a 30 gallon tall fine. That heater is defective and/or .

Would it be worth the cost to you, to get the BioSpira?
 
Firecracker
  • Thread Starter
  • #10
Hmm. Well it wasn't the most expensive one on the shelf so maybe that's the problem.

I would get the BioSpira but convincing my fiance might be a different story. I can probably just wait, we have tons of house projects and motorcycle repairs to keep us busy.
 
Dave at cu
  • #11
I think its $14 at Fish Den for the 1 oz BioSpira pack, which is supposed to treat up to 30 gallons. I don't know if it did much for me. I'm in the nitrite phase now, and my ammonia hasn't totally bottomed out.
 
john&jen
  • #12
Get the biospira. Fish next day! My Petsmart is wonderful with exchanges. Take the TopFin back and get a Hydor Theo. I use them exclusively and they are budget friendly. Cycling is patience... or BioSpira!
 
tkfury
  • #13
Yeah - a lot of people have problems with TopFin. I've only had one problem - but then again 1/5 arn't the best of odds when a heater problem can whipe the tank in a matter of hours. I only have to use them for a little while longer but from everything I've heard I think I'm going to be picking up visi-therm stealths and sticking to them.

I like the bubbles too - all I know is that if my fish like the bubbles they can't be bad. Once you end up having fish in the tank and end up having to raise the temp (say an ick outbreak), the water has a harder time holding onto oxygen and that's when those bubbles are pretty much a must (besides, if the fishies like 'em they can't be bad - but I already said that heh).
 
susitna-flower
  • #14
Sorry, not a patient person

Ammonia is rising. Tank has been setup for about a week, cycling with food flakes (all I had). Temp is 76. Water looked white/cloudy a couple of days ago, clearer now.

HOW LONG DOES THIS TAKE? I want to get fish!



The problem is you have to continue feeding the tank, or the bacteria that were developing will die, and it will just have to start over. If you used all the flakes you had, what are you feeding the tank with?

The ONLY way you will know if the tank is cycled is to test the water for:
Ammonia
Nitrites
Nitrates We recommend getting the API Master test kit to do your tests.

You feed the tank and the ammonia goes up, bacteria s l o w l y develop and eat the ammonia, the byproduct is nitrite, so THAT goes up and the ammonia goes down...this is why you have to continue feeding the tank to keep producing that bacteria that converts ammonia....when the bacteria s l o w l y develops that change nitrites into nitrates, you will know because the reading on nitrites goes down and nitrates go up.

The tank is cycled when the ammonia AND nitrite have spiked up, then go down, and even though the tank is fed they stay down at 0 and the nitrates are up around 5-10.

This cycle is a 4-6 week process, unless you use bio-spira...use it and the tank is safe right away. If you push putting fish in without it, they may die from toxic levels of ammonia or nitrite as the tank completes its cycle.
 
JVzer0
  • #15
I cycled my 10 gallon tank fishlessly in 14 days, so don't lose hope and think that you'll necessarily have to wait a whole month. Then again, my tank is small (I'm assuming yours is 30 gallons?), and has live plants in it. I also had the temperature up around 86 degrees the whole time.
 
Firecracker
  • Thread Starter
  • #16
I'm continuing to feed it of course. And it's now up around 80. I think I probably will trade in that heater, though, because 80 is at its highest setting.

The only other thing I am wondering: The tank, decoration (big Parthenon ruins thingy) and bio wheel are used. The substrate was new (yes I rinsed). Will having the used stuff in there help? I don't know how it was cleaned, or if the bacteria die if they are dried out for too long. I had assumed they would and figured I was starting from scratch.

Ammonia levels are dropping, but nitrites haven't started to rise yet.
 
john&jen
  • #17
The bacteria was killed if the decor was left dry. It sounds like you are cycling. Get another heater!!!
 

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