New Tank With Established Media

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by jehorton, Sep 16, 2018.

  1. jehortonValued MemberMember

    I moved two days ago, still have original tank set up in old place for now, but have a new 40 gallon set up with new substrate and decor. I brought my sponge filter and my HOB filter and have it on my new tank for over a day now. I expected to have a quick cycle with it but my ammonia is 1.0 ppm , nitrite and nitrate 0 ppm. Tested the tap water used and it’s also the same readings. How do I make the tank cycled ? Thought having both filter media’s would make this almost instant. Guess I was wrong. What can I do?

  2. jacob thompsonWell Known MemberMember

    What is the PH of the tank. When you go to 6.5 or below ammonia becomes ammonium and it takes bacteria much longer to cycle with ammonium because it takes longer to oxidize.

  3. jehortonValued MemberMember

    7.4-7.6 PH so that isn’t it.

  4. sfsammWell Known MemberMember

    So just to clarify... Your tap water reads the same as your old house tap or the same as the new tank with Ammonia and nitrAte?
  5. mattgirlFishlore VIPMember

    Did you transfer your fish along with the filter media? What size was the original tank? If you had enough seeded media to instantly cycle this tank just give it time to stabilize. It will take a few days and even up to a week for nitrates to start going up.
  6. jehortonValued MemberMember

    No my old house had maybe .25 ppm ammonia and 0,0 for nitrite and nitrate. But the PH is the same at both places.

    My fish are still in the old tanks while I’m trying to cycle the new one but I only have a week left in the old place before everything has to be out. Day 2 of new tank set up with filter media from old tank. Before I moved I had 1 HOB, 1 canister filet , and one sponge filter on the main tank. I took the HOB and sponge filter and now have those running on the new one. My worry is the ammonia from tap is about 1ppm or a little more. I know once my nitrates come up they will handle that but until then I have one week to get this thing cycled and then Adding fish.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 16, 2018
  7. mattgirlFishlore VIPMember

    It is possible that the ammonia in your tap water is actually ammonium. If so it isn't a good food source for the bacteria living on the media you are trying to instantly cycle with.

    You really should get your fish into this tank ASAP.

    Well seeded media will instantly cycle a new tank but it needs a food source or will soon start dying back. Hopefully you dechlorinated the water you put in this tank before you put the seeded media in/on it.

    Edited to add: If you are not comfortable putting your fish in you need to at least add some pure ammonia. I have always just moved both fish and media at the same time and have always ended up with an instant cycle.
  8. jehortonValued MemberMember

    wow I completely blew it. I totally forgot to add dechlorinator before adding filter media. Crap. Now what?
  9. mattgirlFishlore VIPMember

    Ouch!!!!! How long was the water sitting in the tank before you added the seeded media? Chlorine will dissipate over time. Are you sure you have chlorine in your source water? If not then you may be alright.
  10. jehortonValued MemberMember

  11. mattgirlFishlore VIPMember

    I have some suggestions but a question first. It sounds like you are consolidating 2 smaller tanks into one larger one. Is this correct?
  12. jehortonValued MemberMember

    No I have one 55 gallon understocked and a 10 gallon with some shrimp and snails. Those will be going into a 40 breeder until I set up the 55 gallon again and won’t be using the 10 anymore.

    So I have the 55 and 10 still up and good at the old place. The 40 gallon breeder is the problem
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 16, 2018
  13. mattgirlFishlore VIPMember

    gotcha :) I am assuming that both the 10 gallon and the 55 gallon still have the filtration going on them so you have a second chance if in fact chlorine killed off the bacteria on the media you moved over to this tank.

    You could move EVERYTHING over from the 10 gallon to the 40 gallon. The bacteria colonizes mostly on the filter media but it does grow on every surface in the tank. By moving everything, including the filter, water, deco, substrate and fish from the 10 over to this 40 it should get this tank cycled.

    Even if you don't plan on using the same deco and substrate permanently it will have the good bacteria on it.and can be removed after you are sure your cycle is stable.
  14. jehortonValued MemberMember

    I could bring the water and decor, only issue is the substrate sand I did not like and set up the 40 gallon how I liked. So I’m sure the 10 gallon filter along with the decor would help. What do you think about adding stability or TSS plus?
  15. mattgirlFishlore VIPMember

    I agree, you wouldn't need to move the sand. I was thinking gravel.

    Lots of folks swear by bottled bacteria but personally I've never used any of them. I've always just let my tanks cycle naturally. If it were me doing it I would just move everything possible from the 10 gallon and then just keep a close eye on the perimeters. Just be sure every bit of water gets a dose of dechlorinator before going in the tank and the cycle should catch up quickly.
  16. jehortonValued MemberMember

    Thank you for the advice. I have used both stability and TSS with great results so I may keep that in mind if I don’t see positive results from the natural cycle. Appreciate it!!!
  17. mattgirlFishlore VIPMember

    Please let me know how it is going. I love hearing happy endings. :)

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