Prime and Tetra Safe Start? Question

  1. Jackie Frost Member Member

    I am so tired of waiting for my tank to cycle that I decided to go ahead with the Tetra Safe Start. I haven't changed the water in my tank for two weeks and the amonia level today was at 0.50.:mad: I thought the amonia level was supposed to go down durring a fishless cycle, not rise. How bizarre. My question is do I need to change the water before adding the safe start? Is it safe to use Prime or will that kill off the TSS bacteria? Oh and how long will it take before I can add fish. Is it instant?
     
  2. Shawnie Fishlore Legend Member

    if you have no fish, dont bother with TSS...it will probably not work..TSS works best when added with fish ..with a fishless cycle, you want the ammonia to rise...you actually want it up to 4-5ppm and then you will see the nitrites kick in...dont use prime with TSS no matter what as it makes it less beneficial ...
     

  3. Meenu Fishlore VIP Member

    Prime killed my first bottle of TSS, lol.

    I would recommend getting a bottle of TSS that's too large for your tank. Since you don't have fish, I'd say do a 90% water change. Use Tetra's water conditioner (I think Aquasafe, it's recommended for use with the TSS). Then you can add the fish. At the same time, shake the bottle of TSS and pour the whole thing in the tank. Then feed the fish but don't check the water parameters or do any water changes, add any conditioners, etc., for 7 days. Then check the water. If it is cycled, ta da. If not, wait 3 more days and check again.

    Oh, and if you don't want to get the aquasafe, and want to just use the Prime, I would say wait 48 hours after adding Prime (24 minimum, 48 on the safe side) before adding the fish and the TSS.

    Add enough fish to produce enough ammonia to keep the TSS bacteria alive, but be careful not to overstock the tank, as you don't want to overwhelm the TSS. In a 15 gallon, if the adult size of the fish is 2 inches, I'd say add 5-6 fish at the same time as the TSS.

    Good luck! I'm super excited for you, Jackie!
     
  4. Jackie Frost Member Member

    Really? :eek: Well, that explains a lot! I thought that 0.50 would be enough for the beneficial bacteria to munch on. No wonder it's been taking so long. And I just ordered an expensive bottle of TSS! It's supposed to arrive tommorow. Maybe I will get the fish and then add TSS ...though I don't want the same thing that happened to Molly to happen to the new fish. Decesions ...decesions ....


    I just read your post Mommybaby. I think I am going to go your route. I don't want to waste that 20.00 bottle of TSS. Oh and another question. How long does the TSS keeps? Is there an experiation date?
     

  5. Shawnie Fishlore Legend Member

    if you go with tss, heres a few tips....a water change 24hours prior with aquasafe conditioner...add fish with the tss ...make sure the tss is enough, if not more for the tank size...make sure your ph is at 7 or above...below 7 will starve the tss as it produces ammonium not ammonia at that lower ph....tss is suppose to be good for a year...i only buy bottles that are 6months old or younger..im paranoid LOL
     
  6. flyin-lowe Well Known Member Member

    https://www.fishlore.com/fishforum/aquarium-nitrogen-cycle/58116-q-tetra-tetra-safestart.html

    This link will help answer a lot of your questions. It is info directly from the people that make TSS. It worked for me but as others have said you need it if you are adding fish and you have to add fish for it to work. If you are going to continue the fishless cycle then get the ammonia up and let it go. No need to do any water changes or treat the water right away because there are no fish to protect. Also you can crank your heater up if you are going fishless. Many say a warmer tank will cycle faster.
     
  7. Meenu Fishlore VIP Member

    ditto what shawnie said.

    Jackie, I don't know if you are aware, i'm the doofus who had to use 4 bottles of tSS.

    1st bottle - only 2 danios in 30 gallon tank, not enough ammonia, TSS died

    2nd bottle - added more fish (15 total in my 30 gallon). checked my water on day 2, panicked, added Prime. TSS died

    3rd bottle - decided to change my filter from penguin to a canister. TSS died

    4th bottle - for the largest bottle, poured it in, and left my tank alone. day 7, still showed ammonia. day 10, my tank was cycled