How to tell of tank is cycled without master testing kit

Discussion in 'Aquarium Water' started by katiemorrison94, Jun 25, 2016.

  1. katiemorrison94Valued MemberMember

    How can i tell if my aquarium is completly cycled if I dont have that master testing kit? My goldfish died of old age and my tank sat for a few weeks with nothing in it (i kept the filter going). I just put fish food in there about a week ago. How long should that take to cycle the tank?

    75-76 degree, no inhabitants beside live plants, 60 gallon w/canister filter that was running for 1+ years with my goldfish. I transfered them from my old 40 gallon.
  2. Sarah73Fishlore VIPMember

    Your tank has really died from the poop loss. i would add 5 danios since they are harder and see if they die. I think you have to re cycle the tank because bacteria from your filter can't go without fish poop for more than a day at the moss. if you want have fish again and have them survive, then
  3. katiemorrison94Valued MemberMember

    I want to have cherry barbs in my tank. Ive read that they are hardy. You think they will be okay if i add them, and not danios?
  4. CoradeeModeratorModerator Member

    Without a test kit there's no way of telling whether it's cycled or not, you could take a water sample to your Lfs & get them to test it & write the numbers down for you.
    If you're wanting to add fish straight away you could get some Safe start to help the cycle along but you'd still need to test the water after the 14 days are up to see if it's cycled.
  5. CindiLFishlore LegendMember

    Is there a reason you don't want to have the API test kit? If you can't afford one right now I would take a sample to the store like mentioned and have them test your water since you added fish food in and write down the numbers for ph, ammonia, nitrites and nitrates and if they have them, GH and KH too.

    If you would've added fish immediately then you would have held the cycle for sure.

    Do you have a heater for the barbs?

    What you could do to be safe is add in 6 cherry barbs for the 60g tank and a bottle of TSS+ (tetra safe start plus) at the same time and then do nothing for two weeks. At the end of the two weeks have your water tested for ammonia, nitrites and nitrates.
    I would still have it tested beforehand to see if you need to do a massive water change in that tank. I'd recommend at least a 50% either way before adding new fish to replenish the minerals.
    Have them test your tap water too and write down those numbers! :) post them back here for tap and tank.

    Actually this is not true :)
    The AOB, ammonia nitrifyers can go a long long time without food they have shown in studies. The colony of bacteria will shrink as the food lessons and when there is no more food source they can go into a dormant state for quite awhile. It's possible there is a small colony there that could have been revived with the fish food but without a test kit we just don't know.
  6. katiemorrison94Valued MemberMember

    I am going to buy a test, but not until friday. Im being impatient and i want fish now because my tanks been empty for too long! Im going to just get the test and do it the right way. I hope that bacteria is still there. I never turn the filter off or did a water change.
  7. CindiLFishlore LegendMember

    I don't blame you, it's hard looking at an empty tank. Let us know what the test shows for both tap and tank when you get it. In the mean time add in another pinch of fish food.

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