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Old 09-13-2009, 07:22 PM   #1
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I have a 29 gallon tank thats been set up for 4 weeks. The pH is great and the ammonia is gone. However, my tank is filthy and my nitrite levels are at 1.6 mg/l. Is it too early to drop a few cleaners in the tank?
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Old 09-13-2009, 07:37 PM   #2
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First off, you need to test the levels properly and list them hear. We don't know what great means.. and if you still have nitrites or not. Just because the ammonia is gone doesn't mean the cycle is over either. You could still have nitrates which means that the cycle is still going on. Also, when your cycle DOES complete, just do a 50% water change and the nitrate levels will drop considerably, which would then be the time that you can add a clean up crew and too add some good algae into your tank which will remove phosphates and nitrates.
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Old 09-13-2009, 09:27 PM   #3
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pH is 7.7 ammonia is 0mg/l nitrites are 1.6mg/l
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Old 09-13-2009, 09:29 PM   #4
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Ok, see. Your nitrites are still 1.6mg/l. This means that your cycle is still incomplete. The cycle is fully complete when you show no signs of nitrites or ammonia. After nitrites and ammonia are no longer present, you can then do a 50% water change, and start adding livestock. 7.7 is kind of on the low end.. but having a stable pH is better than having one that is unstable. And by the way, a "perfect" pH would be 8.2-8.4. Not 7.7.
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Old 09-13-2009, 09:30 PM   #5
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how long does it take for nitrites to no longer be present?
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Old 09-13-2009, 09:34 PM   #6
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It really all depends. How long have you been testing zero for ammonia? And when did you start showing signs of nitrite readings. Even so, it's not really set in stone how long it will take for your nitrites to drop. You can estimate.. but even then its not guaranteed. It depends on many factors. What you used as an ammonia source.. when you started showing readings of ammonia.. how big the ammonia spike was.. when the ammonia readings started dropping or showed zero.. when nitrite levels became present.. etc.. A lot of things as you can tell, and even then.. like i said, its not set in stone how long it will take your cycle to complete.
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Old 09-13-2009, 09:39 PM   #7
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ok thank you. My tank is just covered in diatom bloom and looks really crapy. I started reading 0 on ammonia about 5 days ago.
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Old 09-13-2009, 09:43 PM   #8
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Diatoms will go away, as long as you are using water that doesn't have an excess in silicates. If you ARE using RO water, then don't worry because the diatoms will burn themselves out on their own. As for the readings, i still don't really know because i don't want to tell you.. "oh it will be cycled by tuesday.." and then it's not and you get angry. So, best option is to just keep testing, and just stay patient. Your tank WILL cycle.
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Old 09-13-2009, 09:54 PM   #9
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the diatoms will burn themselves out soon enough. The tank will look a little icky for a bit while you go through your algae bursts. It'll clear up soon
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