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Old 01-20-2014, 12:02 PM   #1
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I Think I am in Big Trouble

Hey Everyone! Let me just start off by saying I am terrified to be posting here.
Okay, here it goes goes, please be gentle...
So I went out and bought a 37 gallon starter set. I did some research on how to set it up and began the process.
I bought CaribSea's instant aquarium sand and followed the directions to set up the beginning stages to the aquarium. As advertised the aquarium was ready to go within 24 hours of the sand being put in. The water test showed signs that the tank was ready for some fish to begin the nitrogen cycle. Everything was going great for the first couple weeks.
I failed to do realize that all of the beneficial bacteria I had been developing in my tank was in the filter (Top Fin 40). My tank started to get filthy so after a couple of water changes I decided I would replace that filter cartridge. Apparently that was dumb because now my tank is going to try to go through another nitrogen cycle I think and it's killing my fish. I am not sure how bad I meesed things up.
Sorry for all of the rambling to get to my question, what steps should I be taking to get my tank back to the way it was? My Nitrites are insanely high and have been for just under a week.

Water parameters:
Temp: 76 F
pH: 6.8
NO3: 30
NO2: 5+ ppm

Stock:
12 Serpae Tetras
1 Dwarf Gourami
5 Corys
1 Bolivian Ram
1 Synodontis Jaguar Hybrid

The Corys and Gourami all seem to be the ones taking this the hardest. The Ram and Tetras and Cat seem at the moment to be great. Thanks for any advice you all can give me.
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Old 01-20-2014, 12:11 PM   #2
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Hey Everyone! Let me just start off by saying I am terrified to be posting here. Okay, here it goes goes, please be gentle... So I went out and bought a 37 gallon starter set. I did some research on how to set it up and began the process. I bought CaribSea's instant aquarium sand and followed the directions to set up the beginning stages to the aquarium. As advertised the aquarium was ready to go within 24 hours of the sand being put in. The water test showed signs that the tank was ready for some fish to begin the nitrogen cycle. Everything was going great for the first couple weeks. I failed to do realize that all of the beneficial bacteria I had been developing in my tank was in the filter (Top Fin 40). My tank started to get filthy so after a couple of water changes I decided I would replace that filter cartridge. Apparently that was dumb because now my tank is going to try to go through another nitrogen cycle I think and it's killing my fish. I am not sure how bad I meesed things up. Sorry for all of the rambling to get to my question, what steps should I be taking to get my tank back to the way it was? My Nitrites are insanely high and have been for just under a week. Water parameters: Temp: 76 F pH: 6.8 NO3: 30 NO2: 5+ ppm Stock: 12 Serpae Tetras 1 Dwarf Gourami 5 Corys 1 Bolivian Ram 1 Synodontis Jaguar Hybrid The Corys and Gourami all seem to be the ones taking this the hardest. The Ram and Tetras and Cat seem at the moment to be great. Thanks for any advice you all can give me.
So it looks like a mini cycle, you really don't need to change filter media until it is falling apart, just swish it out in tank water to knock the gunk off, what you want to do now is 50% wc every hour to knock down nitrite to 0, than a 50% wc anytime your amm or trite gets above 0 or trates above 20, those rams are sensitive fish so it'd be in his best interest to have so clean safe water! Good luck!! Edit-amm above .10-.25 in cycle..
Take care to match water temp as to not stress fish, and use water conditioner.
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Old 01-20-2014, 12:34 PM   #3
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Thank you so much! I will get started on that right away. How many 50% water changes every hour can I get away with before it start really stressing them out?
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Old 01-20-2014, 12:44 PM   #4
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Thank you so much! I will get started on that right away. How many 50% water changes every hour can I get away with before it start really stressing them out?
I'd do them until water is good, the high nit and amm are going to stress them more than wc, just keep the temps matched and use good water conditioner and you should be goid
Ps why were you scared to post?
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Old 01-20-2014, 12:45 PM   #5
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Wonderful! Thanks.
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Old 01-21-2014, 02:57 PM   #6
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I did 50% water changes for 7 hours yesterday, so 7 changes total. The Nitrite reading read 0 last night. I did another test just now and it's back up to 1. So I will be doing more today. Should I keep doing them every hour?

I was scared to post in fear of getting bashed for something stupid I did. Sorry I didn't answer that yesterday.
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Old 01-21-2014, 03:01 PM   #7
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If someone bashes you, report the post and let us, the site team, take care of it. We don't take kindly to rudeness on the forum.

I'd do another change, a smaller one.
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Old 01-21-2014, 03:04 PM   #8
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That was just my first post an while I was doing my research and browsing all of the different aquarium advice forums I noticed some people got talked down to. But this has seriously been the most cordial site I've seen.

Should rinse the cartridge at all?
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Old 01-21-2014, 03:06 PM   #9
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I did 50% water changes for 7 hours yesterday, so 7 changes total. The Nitrite reading read 0 last night. I did another test just now and it's back up to 1. So I will be doing more today. Should I keep doing them every hour? I was scared to post in fear of getting bashed for something stupid I did. Sorry I didn't answer that yesterday.
Holy moly! You put in some work! Maybe a couple 35-40% than test? How did the fishies seem after all that action?
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Old 01-21-2014, 03:08 PM   #10
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That was just my first post an while I was doing my research and browsing all of the different aquarium advice forums I noticed some people got talked down to. But this has seriously been the most cordial site I've seen. Should rinse the cartridge at all?
It happens, usually with stocking choices, if I had posted here when I first started I would have been nervous too haha, people here are very nice and extremely knowledgable. I wouldn't rinse the cartridge until your tank has been cycled for a few weeks, unless it is completely fully gunkified.
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Old 01-21-2014, 03:11 PM   #11
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They didn't seem to react too much at all, except the tetras did change to a more pale color and stopped schooling for a bit but were back to looking more red and schooling tightly after a couple hours.
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Old 01-21-2014, 03:14 PM   #12
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They didn't seem to react too much at all, except the tetras did change to a more pale color and stopped schooling for a bit but were back to looking more red and schooling tightly after a couple hours.
Not too bad, they can get spooky pretty easily.
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Old 01-21-2014, 03:19 PM   #13
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Thanks again, y'all have been terrific. Hopefully a few more changes will work out better. I got time since the snow started falling and work shut down.
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Old 01-21-2014, 03:22 PM   #14
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Thanks again, y'all have been terrific. Hopefully a few more changes will work out better. I got time since the snow started falling and work shut down.
It just started here, I'll be driving through the mess soon enough..
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Old 01-21-2014, 03:25 PM   #15
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Good luck and be safe!
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Old 01-21-2014, 09:07 PM   #16
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Please don't ever be scared or feel bad. When you need help or info come in and ask. That's what we are all here for. Mutual support and exchange of knowledge. When you first start the journey of fishkeeping there is a huge amount of information to process all at once. ALL of us have made big mistakes as we are learning. LOL, I'm still capable of them. Welcome to AA. Glad to have you with us. Soon you'll be like us and be wondering where you can put one more tank. OS.
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Old 01-21-2014, 09:54 PM   #17
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Soon? Trust me I'm already there, but until I get this first one running smoothy its going to have to wait. Thanks or the welcome. Obviously, I had no reason to be nervous.
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