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Old 10-15-2008, 01:59 AM   #21
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1. What is in your tank as far as livestock? If you're not feeding the tank anything and it's just sitting there, the only place you can get 2.0ppm phosphates is from your source water. Did you test your RO/DI water for phosphates?

i currently only have the LR.
2. Why did you get an ammonia remover if your ammonia reads zero?

Sorry i meant phosphate remover
3. And finally... what did you do to kick start the cycle? If you don't understand the question, then just ask, please! But if you're just blowing it off, just let me know so I'll stop bothering asking about it everytime!
i didnt really use anything to "kick start" the cycle. I was told by a friend who provided me the LR to just let it sit and it would cycle itself as the rock was already curred.
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Old 10-15-2008, 02:13 AM   #22
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...i know my tank has been cycled when amonia is 0 and nitrites are 0 right?
Not necessarily.

Let's say you filled up a tank with salt water and sand, added nothing else, and let it sit for a month. All during that time, and at the end, your ammonia and nitrites would read zero. But that doesn't mean your tank cycled. It didn't cycle because you needed a source of ammonia to feed the bacteria that will cause the cycle.

This is why I keep asking what you used as an ammonia source.

If you used rock from an established tank, and the rock was kept damp during that 1.5 hours out of the tank, then you most likely brought over a fair amount of bacteria with it - the bacteria that will convert the ammonia to nitrites, and the nitrites to nitrates.

BUT... that bacteria will only stay alive if it has ammonia to "eat". And without an ammonia source, over the course of a month the bacteria could've died off, leaving you back at step 1... no beneficial bacteria in the tank and having to cycle the tank.

That's why the suggestion has been made to add something - fish food, a cocktail shrimp - something, to basically rot in your tank and "test" to see if those bacteria are alive and well. If they're not, then you'll see ammonia show up. If they are, then you won't see the ammonia and instead you'll see an increase in nitrates.

You're thinking along the same lines that I've been thinking...

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I personally belive the nitrates have been there since day one when i got the LR from a mature tank.
Have you tested your RO/DI for nitates? Since you're reading phosphates in your RO/DI output, either the test kit is wrong, or your RO/DI unit is buggered up. 0.5ppm phosphates is incredibly high, even assuming your DI resin is depleted and you're just getting the filtration from the RO part of the unit. Pardon the dumb question, but are you sure your RO/DI unit is plumbed correctly, and you're not accidentally putting the "pure" water down the drain? There's been many a person here guilty of that!

In a nutshell... if you're doing a 40% water change, and seeing no change in your nitrates, you've got two choices - your test kit is wrong, or your source water has nitrates in it.

Regarding the cycling issue, hopefully with my rather long-winded comments above, you can see where I'm coming from with wondering if you're really cycled or not. I'd just hate to see you posting in a month when you're trying to deal with an ammonia spike after you added your first fish.

The algae... is it a brownish dust? Or is it slimy red?
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Old 10-15-2008, 02:28 AM   #23
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i hear you...the algae starts of light green for the most part and turns into a bright redish purple.

now if the algae dies (and i'm sure some has) would this not turn into amonia at some point?

i'm pretty sure the ro is plumbed correctly and to tell you the truth i'm about to test it again just to make sure as w/ all these test i think i'm going colour blind, lol.

i'll test all water levels again tomorrow morning and see where i stand. thanks for all the help, greatly appreciated.
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Old 10-15-2008, 11:00 AM   #24
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Throw a pinch of fish food in there while you are at it.......
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Old 10-17-2008, 12:46 AM   #25
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Okay, now i'm on about week 4 of my cycle. Did a 40% change and have nitrate levels of 5-10, amonia 0 , nitrites 0 phc approx 8.2. And w/ the wc phosphates are now approx .5. I have not yet added fish food, as i have none yet though do you guys feel it should be necessary for the cycle or do you guys think it is now a good time to add a fish?

Thoughts?
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Old 10-17-2008, 01:51 AM   #26
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Wow... I feel like everything is falling on deaf ears here. I'm obviously not giving you the advice you're looking for, so I'll stop now and let others help out! Good luck!
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