Is my cycle stall? What should I do?

Doantrong877

Hello everyone, I have been cycling my tank for over a week now and I already got my ammonia spiked and back to zero as well as my nitrare is way above 160ppm as this point. However, my nitrite level had been at 5ppm for for than 3 days now. Should I do anything at this point? If there is no issue than whnlen should the nitrite level start to go down after the ammonia level hit 0? Thank you.
 

Ouse

Welcome! :)

I think you should wait for nitrite to reach 0ppm and then do a series of large water changes to get the nitrate down. While there are no fish in the tank you can allow the parameters to spike while cycling.
 
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mattgirl

Hello everyone, I have been cycling my tank for over a week now and I already got my ammonia spiked and back to zero as well as my nitrare is way above 160ppm as this point. However, my nitrite level had been at 5ppm for for than 3 days now. Should I do anything at this point? If there is no issue than whnlen should the nitrite level start to go down after the ammonia level hit 0? Thank you.
Welcome to Fishlore :)

Can you tell us what you have done so far to cycle this tank. It is very unusual to see these high numbers if you've only been working on this cycle for a week or so.

If you will take a few minutes and fill out this template it will help me help you. Nitrogen Cycle Template | Aquarium Nitrogen Cycle Forum | 494741
 
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Doantrong877

Welcome to Fishlore :)

Can you tell us what you have done so far to cycle this tank. It is very unusual to see these high numbers if you've only been working on this cycle for a week or so.

If you will take a few minutes and fill out this template it will help me help you. Nitrogen Cycle Template | Aquarium Nitrogen Cycle Forum | 494741
This is the tenth day since I started fishless cycling the tank. I used RODI water. My tank is 75 gallon. My ph right now is 8.2, ammonia is 0, nitrite is at least 5 ppm(really purple), my nitrate is well above 160 ppm. I really good surface flow. My temperature is at 83F.
 
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mattgirl

This is the tenth day since I started fishless cycling the tank. I used RODI water. My tank is 75 gallon. My ph right now is 8.2, ammonia is 0, nitrite is at least 5 ppm(really purple), my nitrate is well above 160 ppm. I really good surface flow. My temperature is at 83F.
As I said, it is unusual to be seeing numbers this high this early in the cycling process. It will be much easier for me to help you if you could fill out the template I linked too. It will be much better than having to ask so many questions one at a time to get to the bottom of what is happening.

It is possible all you will need to do is a water change to get the numbers down and then add ammonia to keep the cycle growing. I recommend adding ammonia each time it gets down to or close to zero but never more often than once every 24 hours. We need to keep the bacteria fed to complete the cycle.
 
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Doantrong877

As I said, it is unusual to be seeing numbers this high this early in the cycling process. It will be much easier for me to help you if you could fill out the template I linked too. It will be much better than having to ask so many questions one at a time to get to the bottom of what is happening.

It is possible all you will need to do is a water change to get the numbers down and then add ammonia to keep the cycle growing. I recommend adding ammonia each time it gets down to or close to zero but never more often than once every 24 hours. We need to keep the bacteria fed to complete the cycle.








What is the water volume of the tank?:
75 gallon

What type of water are you using in your tank? (tap, well, RO/DI, other):
RO/DI
When did you start cycling the tank?:
Ten days
What type of filtration are you running on this tank? (sponge, HOB, canister, other):
Canister.
If canister or HOB list all the media you are running in it. (manufactured cartridges, sponge, etc.):
The fluval 407 with everything that come with the original package
Do you have good water agitation/surface movement?:
Yes.
What is the water temperature?:
83G
If fish in cycling
What is the entire stocking of this tank? (Please list all fish and inverts):
How often do you feed them and how much?:
Are they showing signs of distress? (fish hiding, staying at the top, looking pale, torn fins, etc):
Do you have live plants in the tank?:
If so are they healthy and actively growing?:

Products used while cycling
If this is a fishless cycle what ammonia source are you using? (fish food, Dr Tim’s ammonia, other):
Dr. Tim's ammonia

If adding liquid ammonia how often do you dose ammonia in your tank and in what quantity? (1ppm, 2ppm etc.):
2ppm. 3 times.
If using fish food as your ammonia source how much are you adding and how often?:
None
Are you using a dechlorinater and if so, which one?:
None
Are you using bottled bacteria and if so, which one?:
Brightwell aquatic mircobacter Start XLM
Did you add seeded media from a previously cycled tank?: yes. It was the aquavitro seed bottle.
What other products/chemicals are you using? (list them all):
Reef buffer. Raises pH to 8.3
Testing and cycling process
What was your knowledge of the nitrogen cycle before beginning to cycle your tank? (none, beginner, intermediate (please explain), advanced):
Beginner.

What do you use to test the water? (API liquid, test strips, other):
API liquid.
Did you test your tap water for ammonia, nitrites, nitrates and pH, if so post the results below?:
No.
Have you done any water changes and if so, when?:
None
How much water did you change?:
None
Did you vacuum the substrate?:
None
Did you clean your filter, filter media, decorations and/or glass?:
Yes. I clean the glass.
If using disposable cartridges have you replaced one recently?:


*Parameters - Very Important
What are your parameters? We need to know the exact numbers, not just “fine” or “safe”.
Tank water: 75 gallon
Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: >= 5ppm
Nitrate: >160 ppm
pH: 8.2

Tap water:
Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 0
pH: 6.5

Explain your cycling problem in detail. (Please give a clear explanation of what is going on, include details from the beginning of the problem leading up to now)

This is the tenth day of my cycle. Everything was going as expected, only thing is my nitrite level is not going down even though my ammonia level had spiked and went back to 0ppm, my nitrate is way above 160ppm? But my nitrite is still above 5ppm and I didn't see any changes for the nitrite level the last 3 days. During the cycle, I have dosed the tank with ammonia three times on different date to maintain the ammonia level at 2ppm. After couple days, I got the reading on nitrite, and as the level of nitrite went up, the pH level went down so I decided to rised the pH back to 8.3 using the reef buffer 8.3pH. I fed the microbacter bateria to the tank everyday.
 
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mattgirl

Thank you for filling out the template. It really helped me understand why your tank is doing what it is doing.

I just read the specifications for the Brightwell aquatic mircobacter Start XLM. Did you read and follow the full instructions exactly as written for using this product? Brightwell Aquatics - MicroBacter Start XLM

A quote from the makers of this product:
To perform a Fishless Cycle: Purchase a bottle of MicroBacter QuikCyclTM to use simultaneously with this product, MicrōBacter Start XLM according to the QuikCyclTM label. Fishless cycling requires both products to be used together. This product will provide the bacteria and the QuikCycl will provide the nutrients. GO SLOW WITH QuikCyclTM! All of the ammonia you put in will become nitrate that you will have to remove later.

Since you are doing a fishless cycle did you follow the above instructions? At least I now know how and why your nitrites and nitrates are so high this early in the cycle. I do suspect the QuikCyclITM is bottled ammonia much like the Dr. Tim's you are using but I don't know that for a fact.

One other thing that stood out to me is this: "you will need an excellent aquarium salt mix". I am thinking this product is designed for a salt water tank. I have to wonder if it works as well in a fresh water tank.

My normal recommendations when I see numbers like this is water changes to lower both nitrites and nitrates but in this case just allowing this product to run its course may be the best route to take. These folks know and understand their product better than I ever will.
 
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Doantrong877

Thank you for filling out the template. It really helped me understand why your tank is doing what it is doing.

I just read the specifications for the Brightwell aquatic mircobacter Start XLM. Did you read and follow the full instructions exactly as written for using this product? Brightwell Aquatics - MicroBacter Start XLM

A quote from the makers of this product:
To perform a Fishless Cycle: Purchase a bottle of MicroBacter QuikCyclTM to use simultaneously with this product, MicrōBacter Start XLM according to the QuikCyclTM label. Fishless cycling requires both products to be used together. This product will provide the bacteria and the QuikCycl will provide the nutrients. GO SLOW WITH QuikCyclTM! All of the ammonia you put in will become nitrate that you will have to remove later.

Since you are doing a fishless cycle did you follow the above instructions? At least I now know how and why your nitrites and nitrates are so high this early in the cycle. I do suspect the QuikCyclITM is bottled ammonia much like the Dr. Tim's you are using but I don't know that for a fact.

One other thing that stood out to me is this: "you will need an excellent aquarium salt mix". I am thinking this product is designed for a salt water tank. I have to wonder if it works as well in a fresh water tank.

My normal recommendations when I see numbers like this is water changes to lower both nitrites and nitrates but in this case just allowing this product to run its course may be the best route to take. These folks know and understand their product better than I ever will.
Thank you.
 
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