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Old 08-19-2014, 11:06 PM   #11
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Heck.. if he's willing to test it out then I say let him.
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Old 08-19-2014, 11:08 PM   #12
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I get it geesh, i was just explaing, don't put the rubber in your tank, it....
Sorry, I didn't connect that post with your prior, I thought it was someone new who had misunderstood. I didn't mean to sound snarky....
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Old 08-27-2014, 01:18 PM   #13
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Well, I have some news.

I had left a portion of it soaking in a glass of water to see if it ever gave off an oily film, or odor. It did neither.

However, my new tank for reasons still unclear (but I think related to Osmocote under the substrate) has too much ammonia, way more than I added to start the cycle. So I went back and tested this glass of water... it does have about 0.25 ppm ammonia (this is with about a 1/2 sq in piece of carpet in about a cup of water, so at least by eye this is more carpet-to-water ratio than the tank).

I do not think this is enough to be contributing to my problem, but it is probably enough to raise some concern that it leaches ammonia. That little by itself in a planted tank (or even cycled unplanted) would do no harm, but that it exists at all is reason for concern that it is leaching something.

By the way, I never heard back from TSC at all.

I don't know that i will tear it apart to remove at this point, but I think I would say the experiment failed and it is not a good idea (feel free to post "I told you so" ).

I may end up tearing it apart anyway -- I'm over 8ppm Ammonia and rising. I am running a couple pounds of Zeolite in a HOB to try to bring it down, and making some water for a partial water change, but if it is the Osmocote+ doing it, then it's going to keep doing it for weeks and I just plain need to start over, I think. That's another whole story, but may be an opportunity to remove the tank (and correct a few other errors at the same time).
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Old 08-27-2014, 02:55 PM   #14
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That's a bummer, tearing down planted tanks sucks.. trust me I hope it balances out for ya.

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Old 08-27-2014, 03:46 PM   #15
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That's a bummer, tearing down planted tanks sucks.. trust me I hope it balances out for ya.
Thanks. I really don't think this is my real issue. I'm getting huge amounts of ammonia, this looks like tiny amounts. Maybe I just plain screwed up in my initial dosing for a fishless cycle. But I'm worried it is something else.

But there's no animals in the tank.
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Old 08-28-2014, 12:08 AM   #16
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Though the rubber may not be contributing to the ammonia, is there a chance that the mat is bacteriostatic or treated in any way that would inhibit microbial growth. If so, could that prevent the BB from properly developing and metabolizing the nitrogenous wastes? Just a thought.


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Old 08-28-2014, 12:10 AM   #17
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Though the rubber may not be contributing to the ammonia, is there a chance that the mat is bacteriostatic or treated in any way that would inhibit microbial growth. If so, could that prevent the BB from properly developing and metabolizing the nitrogenous wastes? Just a thought.


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In all seriousness. . That makes a lot of sense, same way they treat sponges, i wouldn't be surprised if it is in fact gym mat which would most likely undergo said treatment in order to prevent stinkies forming.

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Old 08-28-2014, 12:20 AM   #18
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Though the rubber may not be contributing to the ammonia, is there a chance that the mat is bacteriostatic or treated in any way that would inhibit microbial growth. If so, could that prevent the BB from properly developing and metabolizing the nitrogenous wastes? Just a thought.
Well, it's possible of course, but it's much too early for me to be considered the cycle is stopped. In fact, I was surprised because I think some ammonia is cycling through, I saw some nitrite one day, and am seeing some nitrate now (just 5ppm). But both could be side effects of the fertilizer of course. The tank was full less than a week ago, it got a very tiny amount of media (maybe two cups total, one in each filter) as a jump start, and that media was fairly new (most of it was added to the old tank a week earlier to "cook" so I would have enough to share).

Really no right to expect a cycling tank yet.

At this point I'm more concerned about where the ammonia is coming from than why it is not going away.

But sure... could be an issue. I think not, because I think they would have advertised it as a feature. But could be.
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Old 08-28-2014, 08:10 AM   #19
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It was just a thought. I'm thinking the source of the ammonia is probably to osmocote. But I have no experience with using it, just aware of the ingredients. Just curious (and you would have mentioned this) are you adding any ammonia aside from the osmocote (with the assumption of a fishless cycle)?
As for a mysterious ammonia source, I posted a thread in April 2013 in which I had set up a tank with the intent of doing a fishless cycle and ammonia appeared spontaneously. I did not add any to the tank, yet it read 8+ ppm about a week after setting it up. I would do a daily 90% WC and it would drop to <1 ppm but within 8-12 hours it was back to 8. This went on for a week. Plus a heavy oily film on the surface and thick, white, powdery substances on the plants, gravel and walls. New filter, a few plants from the old tank, small piece of boiled driftwood...nothing else added. The only thing I could point at was the EcoComplete. It sat on the garage floor a few months prior to this and went through several freeze thaw cycles. I believe it has bacteria in to provide an "instant cycle" and it is possible that something went wrong with the temperature fluctuations. I never did figure out what went wrong. Threw out the EcoComplete and filter media, sterilized everything and restarted from scratch. Whatever it was did not repeat itself.


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Old 08-28-2014, 10:26 AM   #20
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...I would do a daily 90% WC and it would drop to <1 ppm but within 8-12 hours it was back to 8. This went on for a week. Plus a heavy oily film on the surface and thick, white, powdery substances on the plants, gravel and walls. New filter, a few plants from the old tank, small piece of boiled driftwood...nothing else added. The only thing I could point at was the EcoComplete.
I had what I can only assume was a massive bacterial bloom also, I think caused by a large driftwood stump. It had been in someone else's tank for years (so I was told), but it immediately grew lots of white streamers and the whole tank turned opaque white, you literally could not see from one end to the other, could barely see across the 2' side.

It went away and for half a day I had a bad smell, then that went away, but there is a lot of crud on everything - grey to brow, I assumed some kind of algae developing but not sure.

Maybe that also contributed.

I did a test with Osmocote in a glass -- 4 granules in a pint of water (no idea what ratio is in the real tank, but I used a tablespoon +/- in about 200 Gallons). After 20 hours it's reading .5 ppm. Not terrible, but certainly a contributor.
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