Important Terrible mistake while cycling with TSS

AspiringAquarist

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I have had TSS in my tank for 5 days now....

When I got, everything in my tank was off...the power strip was turned off. My mom said that she was talking on the phone and it was too noisy

She said that she had it off since 11 AM and I turned it on at 3 PM, so all power to the aquarium was off for FIVE hours. I had three filters running in there (2 power, 1 sponge) and all of them were turned off...gosh :'(

My question is will the TSS now fail since the filter was off for five whole hours?
If this helps, the temperature went from 81 F to in the mid 70's...

And also, another question (completely off topic):
Since the water temperature has been kept consistently at 81 F (except for today's incident), about 1.5 cm of water has evaporated since 3/19. Another centimeter or so and then the water level will be at the minimum level for my heater. Can I add dechlorinated water to the tank to make sure that the water levels don't get too low?

Thanks so much
 

AlyeskaGirl

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Aw, I am SO sorry she did that. Sheesh

Have you tested the water for ammonia, nitrite and nitrAte? Most of the bacteria will attach itself to the filter media, having the filters unplugged and drained most of the water, were they empy? and sitting for 5 hours may have done damage. Some bacteria attaches itself to the gravel and decor but you are going to have to do some daily tests and see what happens. You may have to get another bottle of TSS to be on the safe side. IMO

It's OK to top off your tank with dechlorinated water, it won't hurt anything. As long as it's the same temp as the tank.

Becareful when raising the temp back up, if they were in cooler temps and adjust, then you raise the temp backup to quickly you can stress them.

I hope she doesn't do that again that wasn't very nice of her but then she probly didn't know that was not the thing to do.
 
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AspiringAquarist

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I just did another test right now:
Ammonia- 2.0 ppm
Nitrite- 0 ppm
Nitrate- 10 ppm

The results have been the same for the whole time TSS was added in the tank, with the exception that I started with 1.0 ppm and on the second day of adding TSS, nitrites were 0.5 ppm.

I'm deeply concerned about the high levels of ammonia and low levels of nitrite... :'(

My mom did know not to turn it off; that's what is annoying me. I have repeatedly told her about a million times not to turn off the filter and that it is vital, but obviously she has not been listening.
 

Meenu

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Ask her if she'll buy the new bottle of TSS.
I'm sorry this happened to you. Did the fish make it okay? Poor things?
 
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AspiringAquarist

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She refuses to buy a new bottle of TSS because she says it's too expensive ($17 w/ shipping)...I think that I'm going to do a big 60% water change on 3/29 (that's when the 10 days of TSS is up) and then do 50%'s every following day...If I do that, how many days of daily water changes might it take me to get my tank fully cycled?

On the brighter side, all the fish survived (even through 2 cases of fungus + fin rot). A couple of days before adding TSS one of them got black markings, but I found out that it's due to stress, and today they're completely gone
 

flyin-lowe

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I cycled a 75 gallon with TSS last fall and I never did once get a reading for nitrites. So don't let that concern you.
 

Prince Powder

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On my first tank that I cycled with TSS I never got a nitrite reading either. If your getting nitrates though, they are definitely appearing. (unless your tap water has nitrates) With my second tank cycled with TSS I did have nitrite readings. Keep in mind that you can't really trust tests done while TSS is working so don't stress too much just yet. Just give it the full 10 days and if you don't have a completed cycle then start your daily water changes. As for how long it will take, I really can not say, but it's not like you'll be starting from scratch, some of your beneficial bacteria have already developed.
 

peacemaker92

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AspiringAquarist said:
She refuses to buy a new bottle of TSS because she says it's too expensive ($17 w/ shipping)...
I'm so sorry you're going through this problem. I'd be so angry if this happened to me too. You should let your mom know that you've waited anxioulsly for this cycle to finish and if you have to restart the cycle or wait longer, it'd be her fault. Why didn't she think about that or asked you before turning it off?

Well, hope everything gets better soon. Best of luck!
 
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AspiringAquarist

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Thanks, but some bad news: one of my fish has gotten black marks at the end of it's fin, probably due to ammonia poisoning.

If, after the 10 days are up and I still have ammonia, would it be okay add SuperBac? It's about 50% cheaper than TSS on Big Al's and the total comes out to be $12.98
 

AlyeskaGirl

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Has the ammonia rised or still at 2ppm?

I'm not sure about Superbac...I'm not familiar with some brands of bacterial additives except for TSS. Stress Zyme and Cycle don't work properly eather. There is a old thread on here that someone used Superbac and had results like TSS but not sure if it actually really worked.

You'd have to do a large water change IMO first if you want to try it or you just use Prime , I see you have it listed and do daily 50% water changes until the tank cycles.
 
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AspiringAquarist

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I think the ammonia is still at 2 ppm. The colors between 2 and 3 on the API color chart is too close to distinguish...

Oh and I think topping off the tank with the dechlorinated water was a bad idea...I used Prime as my dechlorinater. So it was basically just like adding Prime in the tank and you're not supposed to use Prime when TSS in the tank b/c it detoxes the ammonia... :/
 

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AA at this point, I would just do daily water changes with your prime until you are cycled...those fish will benefit from having fresh water daily as things just aren't working with the TSS ...adding prime just reduced the ability to feed the bacteria in TSS properly and at 2-3 ppms for ammonia, its time to change 50% or more good luck! I hope things turn the corner for you soon!
 
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AspiringAquarist

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My hopes for TSS have just been increased a little more...
I tested for Nitrite and the reading is 0.25 ppm! That means that there's probably some Nitrosamonas to convert the ammonia

I'm not going to start the Prime w/c's yet; I'll see if by Monday (that's when 10 days of TSS is up) my tank has cycled.
 
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AspiringAquarist

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Okay here are the latest readings:

Ammonia- 1.0 ppm (yay!)
Nitrite- 0 ppm
Nitrate- 30 ppm

I'm happy with the decrease in ammonia and the increase in nitrate. At least the bacteria is started to nitrify =)
 

AlyeskaGirl

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AspiringAquarist said:
I think the ammonia is still at 2 ppm. The colors between 2 and 3 on the API color chart is too close to distinguish...

Oh and I think topping off the tank with the dechlorinated water was a bad idea...I used Prime as my dechlorinater. So it was basically just like adding Prime in the tank and you're not supposed to use Prime when TSS in the tank b/c it detoxes the ammonia... :/
If you read the back of the bottle it says it converts ammonia into a non-toxic form (called ammonium) thus still leaving it available for the bacteria. It detoxes NitrIte and NitrAte. But yes it's not reccommended to use while using TSS.

Just for your info, pH has an impact on if it's the more toxic ammonia or the less toxic ammonium. Lower pH more ammonium, the higher it is the more toxic ammonia. but this doesn't mean to mess with the pH.
 

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