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Old 03-30-2017, 09:25 AM   #1
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Nirites not showing up

So I'm currently on day 15 of my fishless cycle and nothing has changed.

When I first set up my tank, I think I added too much ammonia because it was off the charts, I did a 50% water change about 5-6 days later to get it down to 4ppm, but since then, nothing has happened, what is going on? Does it usually take this long for the nitrites to start to appear?

I used pure ammonia
Temperature is at 89F
PH is about 8.4

I even lowered the water level a bit, so that the filter can create more bubbles, as I read that helps?

Am I doing something wrong? Missing something?
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Old 03-30-2017, 09:35 AM   #2
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Have you tested to see what the ammonia level is now?
I am not sure it can reduce without showing nitrItes ,but it might be worth checking..
Patience is the name of the game..You are using dechlorinator correct?
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Old 03-30-2017, 09:40 AM   #3
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Have you tested to see what the ammonia level is now?
I am not sure it can reduce without showing nitrItes ,but it might be worth checking..
Patience is the name of the game..You are using dechlorinator correct?
I just got finished testing the ammonia and the nitrites (as I have been doing daily) and it's the same as always (Ammonia at 4 and nirites at 0) and yes, I have been using a dechlorinator.
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Old 03-30-2017, 11:20 AM   #4
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Cycling a tank takes time, but if you continue to have slow progress consider using a bacterial starter. Not everyone recommends them, but I've had good luck using both Dr.Tim's one and only & tetra safe start +( I believe that's the name for the tetra product). If you use them they can sometimes speed up the process, but be sure and follow the direction on the bottle. Also see if they have an expiration date on the bottle, they can go bad if they've set around on lfs shelf for awhile.

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Old 03-30-2017, 12:07 PM   #5
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cycling a tank takes time, but if you continue to have slow progress consider using a bacterial starter. Not everyone recommends them, but i've had good luck using both dr.tim's one and only & tetra safe start +( i believe that's the name for the tetra product). If you use them they can sometimes speed up the process, but be sure and follow the direction on the bottle. Also see if they have an expiration date on the bottle, they can go bad if they've set around on lfs shelf for awhile.

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Old 04-01-2017, 01:01 PM   #6
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A cycle should take about 6 weeks.
Dr Tims can cause a false cycle, where free swimming bacteria can consume all the nitrogens without settling on the surfaces where they should. You think the cycle is very quickly done, and you don't wait for the bacteria to properly colonize, and you end up with issues.
I prefer to use some old filter media from someone else's tank to start the colonization and then wait the full time.

And your temp of 89 F seems very high. Bacteria don't do well that hot.
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Old 04-01-2017, 01:45 PM   #7
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Good to know, when I got back into the hobby after many years away( about 20) my family got addicted to fishkeeping.
We cycled three 10g tanks with fish (small #'s, hardy fish), we were very successful with the addition of these products, but have learned a lot here and have since successfully cycled a 75 & 55 with used media.
Hopefully the OP can get some used media, but if not you can, by going SLOW speed a cycle.
Thanks for adding a response from a more experienced member, don't want to give bad advice!
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Old 04-01-2017, 01:56 PM   #8
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This may or may not be helpful. My tap water is about 0.50 ammonia out of the faucet. I have five tanks cycling now. I had nitrates in 48 hours in all cases, and spiking nitrates in less than a week. In most of the tanks I throw in some tropical feeder fish and feed them well for a few days to get it started. I can always pull the fish and spike the ammonia with chemicals to simulate a higher bio-load once the good bacteria is growing. My water is hard and PH around 8.0 if that makes a difference. I even tried it with a dollars worth of goldfish in one tank to see if that would work. It definitely did. Once the nitrates start rocking I do water changes with Seachem Prime. It looks a little expensive but it is very concentrated and an 8oz bottle will do 2500 gallons of WCs. Prime blocks the ammonia ions and makes them far less harmful to fish but still feeds the bacteria if you have any fish in the tank. It would be a waste of money in a fishless cycle IMO. It's also a chlorine remover but I have well water.
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