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Old 03-26-2009, 06:40 PM   #1
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Cycle Problem...Need Advice

Okay quick summary...Started a 37 gal 7 days ago. Doing a live rock cycle with 40 lbs of LR + an additional 20 pounds of rubble in my sump (replaced the bio balls in my w/d as was strongly suggested. Also have a 4 inch sandbed (not live). Salinity and PH have remained steady. Ammonia tested at 2.0 the second day but has now dropped to 0. No nitrites, but nitrates test at 20. What the is going on?
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Old 03-26-2009, 06:53 PM   #2
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It sounds like the LR had enough bacteria on it to convert the die-off from ammonia to nitrAtes. That was kind of quick to go from 2 to 0 in a day, but not improbable.
What kind of test kits are you using?
You can add some fish food and read for ammonia after a day or two. If you read 0 after about 4 days, I would say your cycle should be complete.
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Good reading about:
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Old 03-26-2009, 07:03 PM   #3
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Thanks, I'll give the fish food a try. I'm using the aquarium Pharmaceuticals Saltwater Master Liquid test kit. Would it make a difference if the kit is older? I've had it in storage for a few years. I checked for any sort of expiration date and didn't see any.
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Old 03-26-2009, 07:21 PM   #4
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Yep, that can do it. They have shelf lives. I thought I had a link for the various manufacturers.
Can you get your LFS to doublecheck your readings?
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Old 03-26-2009, 08:04 PM   #5
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I found a link:
Shelf Life of Aquarium Test Kits"
Mine were bottled in 2003, making them no good. At least I'm not going crazy...yet. Thanks for the advice.
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Old 03-26-2009, 09:50 PM   #6
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Anytime!
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Nitrogen Cycle
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