55 Gallon Tank Using TSS in a tank in the middle of cycling

lipadj46
Member
My 55 gallon tank is in the middle of cycling. I seeded it with all the media and gravel from my old tank so there is BB in there. When I first tested the water last weekend I had NH3+NH4 at 4 ppm, Nitrites at 1 ppm and Nitrates at 20 ppm. I was doing daily 13 gallon water changes with a double dose of prime. Last night I had NH3+NH4 at 1 ppm, Nitrites at 0 ppm and Nitrates at 20 ppm.

Now I would be happy to just keep on doing daily water changes with prime until the tank was cycled. The problem is that we are going out of town for 5 days and I don't know anyone in the area to tend the fish (just moved here). So I figured Tetra Safe Start is the only option. I read the TSS sticky and formulated a plan to reduce the ammonia so that the TSS can work as designed.

I did a water change yesterday morning with prime. This morning (24 hours after adding the prime) I vacuumed the gravel, drained out about 60% of the water, rinsed all my media in tank water. Then refilled with tap water and added a large bottle of Tetra Safe Start. Sorry for the long post but to the fish gurus out there does this sound like a decent plan to get the fish through the week in a cycling tank? Also I have an auto feeder I have set to feed them a minimal amount once a day when gone.

Edit: Also I now have about 6 live plants in the tank.
 
Walky
Member
That makes sense to me. Since TSS is designed to keep fish safe during the cycle, it should ensure their safety while you are away and unable to do daily water changes. Plus when you come back, you only have to wait a few days before the cycle is completed. When you added the tap water did you add prime or something similar to remove chlorine and chloramines? Its very important that you do because the chlorine/amine will kill of all of the beneficial bacteria.
 
  • Thread Starter
lipadj46
Member
Walky said:
That makes sense to me. Since TSS is designed to keep fish safe during the cycle, it should ensure their safety while you are away and unable to do daily water changes. Plus when you come back, you only have to wait a few days before the cycle is completed. When you added the tap water did you add prime or something similar to remove chlorine and chloramines? Its very important that you do because the chlorine/amine will kill of all of the beneficial bacteria.
As far as I know she TSS has a dechlorinator in it and stuff to detox the NH3. You are not supposed to use anything esle that locks up the ammonia as it will starve the bacteria in the TSS.
 
Werewolf
Member
lipadj46 said:
As far as I know she TSS has a dechlorinator in it and stuff to detox the NH3. You are not supposed to use anything esle that locks up the ammonia as it will starve the bacteria in the TSS.
Interesting...

Neat if true. What is the source of that belief?
 
Werewolf
Member
lipadj46 said:
Just from the sticky, the directions on the back of the bottle, and from what people have mentioned here. You can just add TSS to water and add fish so the assumption is that is contains a dechlor as the bacteria population otherwise would be degraded.

https://www.fishlore.com/aquariumfishforum/threads/q-a-with-tetra-about-tetra-safestart.58116/
That's a heck of an assumption. Especially in today's world when corporations cover their rear ends even when not necessary with all kinds of silly warnings and disclaimers. I used TSS for both tanks I have when new. Don't remember anything about it containing dechlorinators.

I went and reread the sticky about TSS. There is nothing in there about dechlorinators being a part of the product nor any implication that there is the way I read it.

I do not believe that TSS contains a dechlorinator. To be sure it may be worth the time to contact Tetra and ask.

Better safe than sorry as the saying goes.
 
Walky
Member
tetras dechlorinator aquasafe will not lock up ammonia as prime does, but at this point I think you should just observe the tank and hope the TSS works.
 
Werewolf
Member
Walky said:
tetras dechlorinator aquasafe will not lock up ammonia as prime does, but at this point I think you should just observe the tank and hope the TSS works.
The OP asked if TSS had dechlorinators in it. TSS and Tetra Aqua Safe are two different products.
 
Walky
Member
I know, I was just stating that there are dechlorinators other than prime that can be used that will not lock up ammonia so they can be used at times like this.
 
  • Thread Starter
lipadj46
Member
Just got back after being gone since Sunday. Water tested as follows: NH3/NH4=0.25 (just barely green so rounded up), nitrite=0, nitrate=40. About 3 gallons evaporated and I added back water I had sitting in a bucket with an air stone to dechlorinate.
 
Walky
Member
Since you haven't said anything, I'm guessing the fish are fine, which means that the TSS probably worked/is working.
 
  • Thread Starter
lipadj46
Member
yep the fish are fine, water is clear too.
 

Random Great Thread

Latest threads

Top Bottom