I have a question about the Nitrogen Cycle Question

Discussion in 'Aquarium Nitrogen Cycle' started by tatty_kassy, Mar 25, 2010.

  1. tatty_kassyValued MemberMember

    I started a tank about 5 days ago, I got to keep about 12 gallons of the original water that came with the tank (It was functional) and all the decorations and rocks. The Filter is new, an Aquaclear 30, and the heater is new. Everything else was pretty much kept the same, and I just added more RO water.
    It came with some Danios and a tetra and a guppy, I added a few more Danios and Tetras, now theres a total of 11 fish in the 25 gallon tank.
    I purchased a mini master liquid test kid two days ago and I have been testing it every day (Including this mornings test, thats 3) and so far the readings have been a solid: Ammonia 0, Nitrite 0, Nitrate 5 mg/L, and ph of 7. I know from reading the tutorial on this site that this reading is something you'd want to get at the end of your cycle, some nitrates and no nitrites or ammonia. I already have a reading like that, my question is how long should I keep testing the tank and getting readings like the ones above before I can be certain that the tank has been through its cycle??

  2. outlawWell Known MemberMember

    Welcome to Fishlore!

    Your tank is cycled. With adding more fish, changing out gravel, and filter media is where you want to be careful and keep a close eye on things.

    I'll be honest, I haven't tested recently, but personally I do every couple weeks. The only thing that has changed for our tank though in the last 9mo is the size of the fish. Haven't done any changes.

  3. tatty_kassyValued MemberMember

    Really?? Its Cycled already? I thought it was supposed to take a month..!

    Thats exciting if it is though! This will be my first time ever setting up a fish tank! :;rocker
    There is alot of really good info on this site/board though, I had no idea you needed to do this for a fishtank until I stumbled upon this site!

  4. LucyModeratorModerator Member

    I would almost disagree with outlaw, respectfully, of course.

    I could be wrong, but since you used the old water and diluted it with new water, you're getting readings of what the tank used to be (but now diluted)

    Replacing the whole filter would have gotten rid of a lot of the beneficial bacteria, on the other hand, you have the gravel and decorations which hopefully contain bacteria.

    Imo, you should watch things closely in the new couple of weeks.

  5. tatty_kassyValued MemberMember

    So a few more weeks? See, thats what I thought, I was hoping that it was all set now, but most posts I have read say you need at least 2 weeks. I was just hopeful that because I had so much of the old stuff saved, it would be super easy to do.
    But I have the test kits and lots of RO water in stock so they should be okay. I done a water change already of about 20%, yesterday, and I cleaned about 1/6th of the gravel as well. I figure I'll do that again maybe in another 3 days?
  6. LucyModeratorModerator Member

    Well, it might be cycled. That's why I said I almost disagree with outlaw. He could be right. ;)
    Just wanted to make sure you keep an eye on the water parameters for a while :)

    When you use seeded deco and gravel, there is some beneficial bacteria transfered over.
    The testing will let you know if it was enough.
  7. tatty_kassyValued MemberMember

    I'm definitely doing my best to keep an eye on them, I check them at least 3 times a day right now, I've been watching the fish to see how they are doing and interacting with eachother. I guess thats why I was concerned about my guppy before, because she was breathing so much faster then the others, but shes still doing it and still swimming around and eating and socializing with the tetras and the danios, so I think shes probably okay. Maybe shes just excited or something?
    I made sure to read up on everything before I agreed to get this tank, I just feel better knowing that some more experienced fish owners can help if I have questions! Thanks! :;fr
  8. LucyModeratorModerator Member

    Keep an eye on the guppy, she may be stressed for some reason.
    Looks like you're doing great!
  9. tatty_kassyValued MemberMember

    I am planning on getting some Mollies next week provided that everything keeps going well, so maybe they will relax her having some kinda like her?
  10. AlyeskaGirlFishlore VIPMember

    Hello, :;hi1

    I agree, keep an eye on the parameters for a little while longer since the tank has been moved, added new filter, running for 5 days and you added new fish. Most of the nitrifying bacteria lives on the filter media and some on the gravel and decor. Usually if the water gets slightly cloudy then that is a sign of toxins present and/or bacteria bloom which is harmless and you should test the water and see what is going on.

    Performing weekly partial water changes of 25% and gravel vac to keep the water clean and nitrAtes below 20. It also depends how stocked your tank is for nitrAtes to rise.
  11. outlawWell Known MemberMember

    Sorry, I assumed the gravel would have been ok. I know a lot of the bacteria is in the filter, but didn't think it was a large enough bioload to cause a mini cycle.

    When I swapped gravels in my tank is when we had a mini cycle. Swapping filters didn't seem to impact much.

    I agree with you Shawnie and had have been hammered by the 'Mod Force' lol. With all the changes made though, I would keep a close eye on the parameters. +1 for sure on that
  12. tatty_kassyValued MemberMember

    I wanted to keep the filter but sadly once I had everything set up and turned it on, it worked for 3 seconds and then ppfffhhhhttttt. It was pretty old, like I said I had got this tank secondhand from a previous fish owner, so I had to run out and buy a new one real quick. I tried to find the same one so I could at least just put the old filter into the new one for the time being, but they don't sell them anymore :(
    But so far the readings are solid, and theres no cloudiness at all in the water. I don't use tap water, so I think that will probably help quite a bit.
    I am going to for sure keep testing it daily though to keep it going, and will do that water change in another 3 days. I really want this to work!
  13. jdhefModeratorModerator Member

    There is really no need to do a water change until you either start showing ammonia or nitrite readings (meaning you are not cycled) or your nitrates get above 20 (meaning you are cycled). Too many water changes at this point could mask waht is really going on with your tank.

    Also you really only need to test your water once a day. I would seriously doubt that anything would build up so quickly in 24 hours as to cause harm.

    Good Luck!
  14. tatty_kassyValued MemberMember

    So no more water changes? I will wait a week then, and keep checking daily.
  15. jdhefModeratorModerator Member

    Not using tap water will not help or hinder things as far as cloudiness, or water chemistry except for...ph levels.
  16. jdhefModeratorModerator Member

    Once a tank is cycled the main pourpose for water changes is to keep the nitrates below 20-30. In theory, if your tank took a month to get your nitrates up to 20, you could do water changes once a month.
  17. tatty_kassyValued MemberMember

    And I dunno, where I live there is flouride and drugs and all sorts of in our water. Most people don't really know the real stuff that comes out of that tap depending on where they are.
    I don't even give my cat tap water, the only thing that gets tap water in my house are the houseplants! :)
  18. LucyModeratorModerator Member

    That was me this time. lol
    I'm not really disagreeing with you. The tank could very well be cycle.
    Just erring on the side of caution with frequent testing. ;)
  19. outlawWell Known MemberMember

    Sorry, lol, I donno how I got that wrong. I even double checked who said it. oops. It never hurts to be too cautious though.

    At least I got the Mod part right, lol
  20. thorpbrianValued MemberMember

    That's exactly what the corporate bottled water companies want you to think. Otherwise they wouldn't be able to make BILLIONS on something everyone gets for a very negligible price.....

    99% plus of all drinking water in the USA and Canada is safe to drink 99% of the time.

    Your wasting money on RO water unless something is way out of wack with your tap water. I'd test you tap water after letting it sit for 24 hours to see the parameters. If they come out fine just use your tap water and dechlorinator.

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