Go Back   Aquarium Advice - Aquarium Forum Community > Freshwater > Freshwater & Brackish - Getting Started
Click Here to Login

Join Aquarium Advice Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com
 
Old 05-22-2015, 11:42 AM   #1
Aquarium Advice Newbie
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Missouri
Posts: 8
Fishless Cycle and not sure if I'm doing it right!

I am new to fishless cycling and just recently set up my 10 gallon aquarium for my betta and I was wondering if my tank is on track or if I need to do anything. I've read so many articles and everyone has a different opinion so I am totally confused. I am using the pure ammonia method. Purchased my ammonia at Ace Hardware.

May 16:
Dosed tank to 4 ppm ammonia

May 17:
No change in ammonia

May 18th:
Ammonia: 2 ppm
Nitrites: 1ppm
PH: 7.6

Dosed tank back to 4 ppm

May 19th:
Ammonia: between 2-4 ppm
Nitrites: 5 ppm
Nitrates 5 ppm
PH: 7.6 and on high: 8.0

May 20th:
Ammonia: 2 ppm
Nitrites: 5 ppm
Nitrates: 5 ppm
PH: 7.6 and on high: 8.0

May 21st:
Ammonia: 1 ppm
Nitrites: 5 ppm (bright purple)
Nitrates: 5 ppm
PH. 7.6 and tested high: 8.0

Dosed tank back to 3 ppm


Is my tank on track and if so how long does it normally take for the ammonia level to start to lower to zero or even .25 or .50 in a day? Any help would be great. Did I also mention that this is only my 2nd fish tank and my first fish tank I set up I have no clue how my fish ever lived.
__________________

__________________
Mordecai is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2015, 01:23 PM   #2
Aquarium Advice Activist
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 114
The fact that you already have nitrates is a very good sign. Keep working your plan. Nitrites spikes way high and out of measurable range. Then just one day it was 0. Just stay with it!
__________________

__________________
Jerky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2015, 01:29 PM   #3
Aquarium Advice Activist
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 114
Also the fact that it took one day to process 1ppm of ammonia is good. I would now focus on measuring your nitrites now. The ammonia break down process seems to be working properly. I believe you are fully cycled when it can process 3 ppm of ammonia in 12 hours. But I could be mistaken on that.

But at this point you should be tracking your nitrites now. Nitrites processing bacteria takes longer then the ammonia based on experience and research. Just be patient.
__________________
Jerky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2015, 01:35 PM   #4
Aquarium Advice Newbie
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Missouri
Posts: 8
Thank you for the information. I was just wanting to know if I'm doing it right. The articles I've read never says how long it takes for the ammonia to go down just that one day they do. I have read that the Nitrite spike seems to go on forever and then one day they will be down as well. So keep dosing the tank when it gets to 1 PPM or a little lower and just keep waiting.
__________________
Mordecai is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2015, 01:44 PM   #5
Aquarium Advice Activist
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 114
I personally have never done it with pure ammonia. Nobody gives a timeline because there are so many variables to cycling. Quantity of water, type of filtration, type of gravel, quality of water used. The list could go on and on. Took me 2.5 weeks to get to a comfortable level to add fish. I would say if the tank is processing ammonia well and the Nitrites are 0, I would personally add the fish.

Basically if you wake up in the morning. Make it 3ppm. Then before you go to bed if it's less than 1 ppm and your Nitrite is 0 or close to 0, I would personally add fish.

My opinion is there will always be a small trace amounts of ammonia and nitrites in the water, it's just natural and may not be measurable. Again these this is just my opinion and what I would personally do.

Good luck!
__________________
Jerky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2015, 04:11 PM   #6
Aquarium Advice Newbie
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Missouri
Posts: 8
Thanks for the advice. I watched a Youtube video and the person conducting the video acted like they added the ammonia and BAM the next day the ammonia level was at zero. I thought it probably took longer than that to go down but wanted to make sure. One day my betta will have a nice, bigger home.
__________________
Mordecai is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-26-2015, 07:18 PM   #7
Aquarium Advice Newbie
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Missouri
Posts: 8
OK so I think something has gone wrong with the cycle.

I listed my testing above for the early part and now this:

Friday May 22nd
Ammonia: 2 PPM
Nitrites: 5+ PPM
Nitrates: between 1-5 PPM
PH: 7.8

Saturday, May 23rd
Did not test

Sunday, May 24th
Ammonia: 1 PPM
Nitrite: 2 PPM (going down)
Nitrate: 5 PPM
PH. 7.8

Dosed tank to 3 ppm with pure ammonia

Monday, May 25th
Ammonia: 2 PPM
Nitrite: 1 PPM
Nitrate: 10 PPM

Tuesday, May 26th
Ammonia: 2 PPM
Nitrite: .25 PPM
Nitrates: between 1-5 PPM
PH. 7.8

I can see that my nitrites have peaked and they are now dropping but my ammonia has never really gone down past 1 PPM and my nitrates have never been off the charts? I thought Nitrates went up when Nitrites went down and the same for ammonia? So very confused.
__________________
Mordecai is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-26-2015, 09:50 PM   #8
Aquarium Advice Newbie
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Missouri
Posts: 8
OK, so I decided to go to my lfs and have my water tested because that color chart is hard to read (they all look alike to me).

Ammonia: .50 ppm
Nitrite: 0 ppm
Nitrate: 15 ppm
PH: off the low chart

I should note that I panicked after getting the first readings and did a 30-40% water change. Waited an hour and then took the sample to the lfs. She said my tank might have cycled. So I came home and dosed the tank to 1 ppm of ammonia and will check it in the morning. But to be honest her chart of colors looked way different than mine because on mine my .50 ppm and 1.0 ppm look alike to me. And I must be doing something wrong with my nitrate test because I never get anything but a gold color. I followed the directions in the pamphlet but the lfs seemed to think my nitrates were much higher before the water change and they are now at 15 ppm with the water change. What do I do?
__________________
Mordecai is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-27-2015, 04:51 AM   #9
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
threnjen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 1,611
It sounds like you aren't quite doing the nitrate test correctly. It is hard to get right and sometimes I do it lazily and don't get a proper result.
I remember I misread something in the instructions for quite a while. I will just reiterate what to do here in different words, maybe you missed something?

Give bottle #1 a quick 2 sec shake just because.
x drops of bottle #1 in vial (is it 8 or 10, I don't remember)
Now shake bottle #2 for like a minute, HARD. NOT the vial, the bottle. SHAKE SHAKE SHAKE.
Now x drops bottle #2 in the vial.
Now cap the vial, hold it tight and shake THAT for a minute. SHAKE SHAKE SHAKE!

When in doubt, try again shaking bottle #2 harder and longer.

Anyway your tank sounds almost cycled to me, which is great news. My question for you is, when she got a pH number off the low chart, had you ever done any water changes? To put it simply, cycling "eats" your ph and it will drop and drop and eventually drop so low that the cycle stops. Refreshing your water with a water change can fix that (or adding baking soda). In any case it sounds like you DID a water change, so all good. That's just a tip for another day.

To me it does not sound like anything is wrong with your cycle. A betta is not going to make much ammonia, either. My recommendation:
Dose it to 2ppm ammonia. Check 24 hours later. ammonia 0, nitrite 0, tank is cycled. Do a 90% water change and get a fish the next day.
__________________
90g FW Community, heavily planted, w/29g sump filter * 10g FW plants/quarantine/whatever * 5.5g FW Nano dirted/planted * 20g long FW community * 3.7g FW Pico
threnjen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-27-2015, 10:33 AM   #10
Aquarium Advice Newbie
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Missouri
Posts: 8
I have been testing my PH on the high chart and it is consistently at 8.0 ppm. I have not checked it since the water change yesterday.

I was impatient and checked my ammonia this morning 12 hours later and it looks to me that it is between .50 and 1 ppm (I can't tell those two apart) and Nitrites are at 0 and Nitrates were between 5-10 ppm. I double-checked by testing my tap water and it clearly was 0 on the tap water and a lot more yellow than the tank water. I guess I will shake even more tonight just to be sure.

Why is my ammonia not going down? I would think if my nitrites were at 0 that my ammonia would be at 0 too?
__________________
Mordecai is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-27-2015, 10:37 AM   #11
Aquarium Advice Newbie
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Missouri
Posts: 8
Oh, and I did dose the tank to 2 ppm last night per your instructions and 12 hours later it is between .50-1 ppm. Maybe another week then?
__________________
Mordecai is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-29-2015, 03:56 PM   #12
Aquarium Advice Newbie
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Missouri
Posts: 8
No change in ammonia as of last night. Still have 0 nitrites and between 1-5 nitrates. I have shook that nitrate bottle so much but it still won't give me any other type of reading. I have not added any more ammonia because it isn't dropping from that solid 1 ppm?
__________________
Mordecai is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-29-2015, 09:56 PM   #13
Aquarium Advice Activist
 
Jaeroo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 129
You may have already seen this but this may help? The (almost) Complete Guide and FAQ to Fishless Cycling - Aquarium Advice
__________________

__________________
"Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication." ~ Leonardo da Vinci
Jaeroo is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
cycle, fish, fishless, fishless cycle

Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Fishless cycle am I doing it right? y2klovebug Freshwater & Brackish - Getting Started 9 02-20-2014 08:24 PM
First fishless cycle, am I doing it right? Franny Freshwater & Brackish - Getting Started 6 07-24-2013 07:24 AM
Making sure im doing maintenance on my tank right Goldfish lover Freshwater & Brackish - Getting Started 13 07-16-2011 11:14 PM
help not really sure wat this?? not sure if its bad or good? Dmon1123 Saltwater & Reef - Identification 6 03-02-2010 06:42 PM
o.k not sure if i'm doing right jduny Saltwater & Reef - Getting Started 22 06-02-2009 06:57 PM







» Photo Contest Winners







All times are GMT -4. The time now is 02:04 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×