Prime And Bb

  1. michaelh Member Member

    I'm trying to cycle my tank (20H not planted, 1 rubbernose and 6 zebras). I see there is different opinions wheter Prime is good for BB or not.
    I bought the little device from Seachem, Ammonia Alert, and it shows I have no ammonia. But when i use the Api master kit it showed i have 2 or even 3 ppm.
    I've read a lot of explanations as that the device picks up only free ammonia but not non-toxic ammonia (instead Prime does not differentiate). So where I am holding? Is my tank cycled or not? The fish are acting completely normal, very alive and happy.
    Anyone can help me out? Thanks
  2. Kellye8498 Well Known Member Member

    If the liquid test kit says you have 2-3ppm ammonia you aren't cycled. Not until the liquid says 0 ammonia AND 0 nitrite. Prime locks the ammonia and turns it to less harmful ammonium for 24-48 hours. The reason this isn't good for BB is because they need ammonia for food, not ammonium. If you lock up all the ammonia you are starving the BB and they die off which isn't going to cycle your tank. Prime is fine when used sparingly but don't get too crazy with it and allow it to kill off your cycle.
  3. michaelh Member Member

    I see. I just get anxious to see ammonia rise and waiting for TSS to do its job.
  4. Kellye8498 Well Known Member Member

    I know. I'm one of those people who test even though I shouldn't. You really aren't supposed to test for the first 7 days but I test daily xD It will do the job as long as you don't add any prime after adding the TSS+. If you have added prime after adding TSS+ it is likely that it won't work. Just add the Prime, wait 24 hours, add fish and TSS+ and let it of for 7 days. My tanks are usually completely cycled on day 6 and get a nice water change on day 7.
  5. michaelh Member Member

    Ok thank so much for your input and patience! It's really appreciated. I'll keep you posted!
  6. el337 Fishlore Legend Member

    Prime will bind ammonia in a non-toxic form for 24-48 hours but actually will make it available for bacteria to process it.
    @michaelh, when did you add the TSS+? Tetra advises using their product with 1-2 small fish per 10 gallons. You may have too much bioload for it to successfully cycle your tank especially if you're seeing 2-3ppm ammonia.
  7. Kellye8498 Well Known Member Member

    Not when added within 24 hours of TSS+ which is why you need to wait the 24 hours after adding it or you will not see results after adding the bacteria.
  8. el337 Fishlore Legend Member

    Yes, that's what Tetra claims - Prime or any product that binds ammonia or removes chlorine shouldn't be used within 24 hours. I was addressing the statement about Prime starving the bacteria in general.
  9. michaelh Member Member

    So in the case my bioload is to much, what are my options?

    In addition would it be possible to add more TSS in order to have more BB to break down ammonia?
  10. jdhef Moderator Moderator Member

    Tetra recommends cycling with one or two small fish per 10 gallons. But they also say that you can use SafeStart with a fully stocked mbumba tank since a tank full of those type of fish need to be added all at the same time and they need to be overstocked.

    So I would think that if you are using SafeStart with an overstocked tank, you might want to use a larger bottle. I think if it were me, rather than just adding an additional bottle, I would start over. By start over I mean do a large water change (or back to back water changes) to get your ammonia level as low as possible. Then wait 24 hours. After the 24 hour wait, add a bottle of SafeStart that wll treat a tank much larger than your tank. Don't worry, you cannot overdose.

    Best of luck!
  11. michaelh Member Member

    After the big water change you say to wait 24 hours. Is that because of Prime?

    By the way according to my tank is not overstocked. Is it a reliable site?
  12. jdhef Moderator Moderator Member

    Yes, you need to wait 24 hours min after using Prime (or any other water conditioner).

    I don't know that your tank is overstocked (I'm not real good with stocking) but it is overstocked in regard to cycling with Tetra SafeStart. But I think if you just use a larger bottle of SafeStart, you should be okay.
  13. BluMan1914 Well Known Member Member

    I agree with @jdhef to start over again. This is what you should do.
    1..get a big bottle of Tetra Safe Start Plus (TSS+), and a bottle of Seachem Prime. a 90% water change. This is like starting from scratch.
    3..add the Prime, wait 24 hours.
    4..after 24 hours, add the whole bottle of TSS+. Make sure that you shake the mess out of it.
    5..don't do anything for two full weeks. This means no water changes, no water testing, no topping off. The only thing that you have to do is feed, watch, observe, and just enjoy your fish.
    Note: it takes MORE THAN 7 days for the TSS+ to do its majic. It takes two full weeks. If you do any water changes before the two weeks is up, you will not be cycled, and you more than likely will kill any BB that started to establish itself. I don't know why people suggest changing water after 7 days when clearly the bottle says 14 days.
    6..after the full two weeks is up, do at least a 50% water change, test, and you should be cycled.
  14. michaelh Member Member

    Ok. After two weeks I should do a water change and then test or first test and then change? Sorry but i really want to success this time...
  15. BluMan1914 Well Known Member Member

    Water change and then test.
  16. Cory & the Catz Member Member

    Hi sorry OP to piggy back on your post, but i've been trying to get my tank to cycle and was using prime and stability, after my last large water change (around 50%) I waited 24 hours and added API quickstart, is this similar to the TSS? Should i follow info given here? Also for me and OP alike should we limit feeding for the 14 days or feed daily?
  17. BluMan1914 Well Known Member Member

    I've never used Stability, or API Quickstart, so I'm not sure how similar they are to TSS+.
    Feed daily. Whatever bacteria starter you used needs the ammonia to feed the bacteria. The ammonia comes from the food and the fish waste.
  18. el337 Fishlore Legend Member

    I would go ahead and test around the 12-14 day mark before you do the water change. If your readings show you are still uncycled, you would either want to give it a few more days or add another bottle of TSS. That's just what I would do.
  19. michaelh Member Member

    Ok so yesterday I did a 90% water change, added prime. Tonight, about 29 hours later I added a new bottle of TSS. I'll keep you posted guys and thanks to everyone!
  20. BluMan1914 Well Known Member Member

    Make sure that it's the TSS+, not regular TSS. The regular TSS is supposed to be used on a regular basis, the TSS+ is a one time use.