Why My Aquariums Nitrite Is Still High?

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by chri00x4, Apr 14, 2017.

  1. chri00x4

    chri00x4New MemberMember

    Hi! I am new to Fishlore, and I have a little bit problem with my aquariums nitrite.
    I have a 240L aquarium which my dad bought for me. This is not my first aquarium, I used to own a small tank before with some hardy fish before, so yeah, I never learn how to cycle the tank until my LFS in my area told me that I should cycle my tank, while I was getting some equipment for my aquarium and he gave me all the things to start to cycle my aquarium.

    So, when I arrived home I did what he told me and I cycled my tank for 2 weeks, and the nitrite that time was <0.3 mg/l/yellow color (I’m using the Tetra Nitrite Test) which was good. And after that I was getting my fishes (5 discus and 5 Sterbia corys) at the same place where I got my equipment, I asked him if it was ok to get 10 fish for one day, because I read somewhere you should get about 3 fish for the first week and he said it’s fine and I can get more fish after 3-4 weeks.

    Now this is where the problem started after I put all my fish in the aquarium, they were “fine” (the discus was hiding, while the cory were swimming around) the next day one of my cory died and I tested my nitrite it was 1.6 mg/l/red which was close was bad, so I change 30% of the water and put some of the bacteria, and the day the fish were fine but when tested the water it was red again and I change the water again and also the day after and after 3 days my second cory die, and I started to get frustrated and scared that maybe my 5 discus or my other cory will die. (and my mom is started to get annoyed that used too much water) Now I am using Tetra Safestart and it still show almost the same nitrite.

    What did I do wrong?
  2. AvalancheDave

    AvalancheDaveWell Known MemberMember

    Do you have an ammonia test? Did you have an ammonia source during the two weeks?
  3. OP

    chri00x4New MemberMember

    My tap water doesn't have any ammonia (in my country we don't have any ammonia in our tap water), and I was planning to buy one, but my LFS said it wasn't necessary to have one. So I think I started having ammonia when I got the fish.
  4. Lindsay83

    Lindsay83Valued MemberMember

    I think AvalancheDave meant, did you add fish food or Household ammonia during those 2 weeks? Fish produce ammonia through their gills and through their waste products. Ammonia is toxic to them, and will kill them if leftunchecked. In a fishless cycle, we substitute the fish for another, safe alternative source of ammonia.

    If you didn't use ammonia in those first 2 weeks, then you'll be doing a fish-in cycle.
  5. OP

    chri00x4New MemberMember

    No, I didn't use any fish food or household ammonia, because the LFS told me to use the "bottle (filter media)", and it will cycle my tank and everything.
  6. Lindsay83

    Lindsay83Valued MemberMember

    Ok, so you're doing a fish-in cycle. Do you have any Seachem Prime? This will bind the ammonia and nitrite during the cycle, allowing the filter to mature, but keeping the toxins "locked" away from the fish.

    This is Amaozon UK, but it should also be readily available from Amazon.com or LFS:
    Prime by Seachem: Amazon.co.uk: Pet Supplies

    [Apologies to your mom], while the tank is cycling, you'll need to check ammonia and nitrite on a daily basis and keep ammonia and nitrite below 1ppm or mg/l, carrying out water changes if either/both rise above 1ppm, and dosing the tank with Prime to protect the fish.

    Alternatively, you could return the fish to the LFS and carry out a fishless cycle, using the above-mentioned fish food or household ammonia as a substitute. That way, you would only need to carry out water changes if ammonia climbed higher than 4ppm, or nitrite climbed higher than 5ppm.
  7. AllieSten

    AllieStenFishlore VIPMember

    Your fish are the source of ammonia. Their waste produces Ammonia, then it converts to Nitrites then nitrates. The goal is to have 0 Ammonia, 0 Nitrites, + Nitrates. This will take a couple weeks.

    If you are using Tetra Safe Start it is recommended to not test for 2 weeks because the numbers will go crazy and make you worry. I would just feed your fish like normal once to twice per day and hold off on testing for the recommended time.

    Q & A With Tetra about Tetra SafeStart

    Edit: If you are starting over I would use Seachem Prime and Stability instead. That way you can keep a closer eye on your water parameters. That's the method I prefer
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2017
  8. OP

    chri00x4New MemberMember

    I ordered Seachem Prime in Amazon 2 days ago, because I read many people were using it, and now I just need to wait 1-2 weeks until it will arrive. And every time I change the water, I always apologise to her and promise to her that I will pay half of the water bill and I will change the water again today and I bought another type of Tetra product which is Aquasafe will that help a little bit?

    As much I want to return my fish, the LFS where I bought my fish is about 2 hours from here and that is the only store I trusted, because his fish looks more healthy than any other LFS and my brother help me with transporting my fish.

    Ok, I ordered the Seachem Prime but not Seachem Stability, because it was already expensive to buy one more product (already paid about 50 USD for one product). Is it ok if I only use Prime alone? And I will try feeding them 1-2 times only, so it will lower the Nitrites and use Tetra Safe Start again and or maybe I will use Tetra Aquasafe (I don’t know which is better for now). But I’m kinda worried with my Discus, because they are only juveniles.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 15, 2017
  9. Lindsay83

    Lindsay83Valued MemberMember

    Aquasafe is just dechloronator - it removes chlorine, chloramine and heavy metals, but not ammonia or nitrite.

    Safe Start adds beneficial bacteria to the water/filter which, theoretically, speeds up the cycle.

    Prime does the same as Aquasafe, but also detoxifies ammonia and nitrite.

    P.S., when I put in square brackets "Apologies to your mom", it was me apologising to your mom - not suggesting/telling you too. ;) I wasn't trying to guilt-trip you. :)
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 15, 2017
  10. AllieSten

    AllieStenFishlore VIPMember

    So you need to decide how you want to proceed. If you are using Tetra Safe Start then you need to follow the directions exactly as it says. Since you aren't even getting the Prime for 2 weeks, then this would be a perfect time to start a round of TSS.

    Do a large water change, use a dechlorinator for full tank volume (aquasafe is fine to use for now). Then wait 24 hours and dump a whole bottle of TSS into your tank. Then don't do anything else for 14 days. No testing, no water changes, no adding anything but food for the fish. This is how Tetra Safe Start is designed to be used. It has worked well for loads of people, you just have to be patient with it. I personally am not patient enough and would be testing like crazy after only a couple days.

    Here is some more info about TSS and further instructions. So you can maybe alter the routine a bit to what works for you.

    Q & A With Tetra about Tetra SafeStart
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2017
  11. AvalancheDave

    AvalancheDaveWell Known MemberMember

    Per capita water usage is something like 100 gallons per day so in most cases aquariums use a trivial amount of water. I suggest you pay no more than 5% of the water bill and tell your mom to start taking navy showers.
  12. Lindsay83

    Lindsay83Valued MemberMember

    Thank you for posting that link. I've said this before, but I've never used any bacteria product such as TSS and was dubious about how they worked.

    I consider myself newly informed. :)
  13. OP

    chri00x4New MemberMember

    Don't worry you are not guilt-tripping me:), to be honest even though she hates that I always change the water. My mom actually loves looking at the fish (she watch them 24/7) and sometimes forget to do the household chores:D.

    -This sound a little bit stupid, but how do you like or thanks a reply?

    Ok, I will start changing the water now and follow all the things you told me. And thank you for adding the link about the SafeStart:), maybe I was just a little bit impatient and got panicked after I test the water the day after.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 15, 2017
  14. Lindsay83

    Lindsay83Valued MemberMember

    Glad we cleared that up.

    It took me a while to figure out how to like/agree/thank, etc, too. Do you see that row of icons above Quote and Reply of a member's post? The balloons are Thanks, the thumbs up is Like, the tick is Agree. . . Not entirely sure what the rest are, although I think the medal is Winner.
  15. OP

    chri00x4New MemberMember

    My mom is pro when taking navy shower, so yeah. I'm the one who is always "wasting" the water and I pay about 10% of the waterbill (ever since I turn 18).

    I can't see any icons. I remember seeing it yesterday, but I can't seem to find it again.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 15, 2017
  16. jdhef

    jdhefModeratorModerator Member

    If you hover over them a little box pops up telling you what they are:
    Balloons: Thanks
    Thumbs up: Like
    Check Mark: Agree
    Smiley Face: Funny
    Star Medal: Winner
    Blue Circle with an "i" in the middle: Informative
    Heart: Love
    Wrench: Useful
    Rainbow: Optimistic
    Paint Brush: Creative
  17. James17

    James17Well Known MemberMember

    Oh yuck, three minute showers again.
  18. Lonewolf9395

    Lonewolf9395Valued MemberMember

    This is only the case if you are on a computer. If you are on the app it is different. On the app there is a thumbs up at the bottom of the post that you can tap and it is a like. There is no way to do thanks, love or any of the others on the app. :)