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Old 03-09-2010, 10:27 PM   #1
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First Test

I finally got my API test kit. My tank (20 gal long) has been running for the last couple days (no fish). I just wanted to run ammonia, nitrAte, and nitrIte tests to get the hang of how it's done and just out of curiosity. It's kind of fun - like having a little chemistry kit when you were a kid

So here are my readings:

ammonia = 0.5 ppm
nitrIte = 0 ppm
nitrAte = 0 ppm

So I need to get ammonia to get the cycle started. I think I read somewhere (I have been reading so much, my head is starting to spin a bit! ) that I need to get "pure" ammonia and that if I shake the bottle and there are bubbles that it is NOT pure ammonia? Is that correct? Any suggestions on where would be best to look for pure ammonia?
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Old 03-09-2010, 11:05 PM   #2
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I think most people have found the ammonia at Ace hardware. Make sure it has no surfactants in it.
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Old 03-10-2010, 12:25 AM   #3
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Yup, ace hardware sells it.
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Old 03-10-2010, 07:15 AM   #4
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Thanks! Off to Ace over my lunch hour!
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Old 03-10-2010, 09:52 AM   #5
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The "wonderful" journey of cycling a tank...

Quote:
Originally Posted by AgilityIG
so I need to get ammonia to get the cycle started. I think I read somewhere (I have been reading so much, my head is starting to spin a bit! ) that I need to get "pure" ammonia and that if I shake the bottle and there are bubbles that it is NOT pure ammonia? Is that correct? Any suggestions on where would be best to look for pure ammonia?
LOL :p about the "head starting to spin"...that is GOOD!!! (in a crazy sorta way!) that means you are doing your research!!! As a newbie myself, PLEASE don't give into the temptation of adding fish before the cycle ends...is not worth it!!! Get your tank cycled and then add your fish, SLOoooWLY!! If something I am trying to "practice" in fishkeeping is PATIENCE!!! So GOOD LUCK and welcome to AA!!!
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Old 03-10-2010, 01:40 PM   #6
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Kudos for going fishless for your cycle. It's tough waiting it out, but it's really much less stress and work.
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Old 03-10-2010, 02:07 PM   #7
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ok... I made my Trip to ACE and found: "Amonia - janitorial Strength Formula" it says that it contains 10% ammonium hydroxide (and no bubbles when I shake it) - tell me I bought the right thing!!
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Old 03-10-2010, 02:15 PM   #8
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You got it, that's the right stuff.
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Old 03-10-2010, 04:28 PM   #9
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+1

For full disclosure, I didn't know any better and I cycled one of my tanks with ammonia with surfactants. It's been up and running for 6 months without an issue. Guppies and RCS have been breeding like mad. Maybe it was the water changes, maybe I just got lucky, but I'd try it again. Not sure what they use for surfactants in ammonia, but all a surfactant does is it reduces the attractive forces between the molecules so the ammonia spreads out on a flat surface instead of beading up.
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Old 03-10-2010, 08:24 PM   #10
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dont smell it! it'll knock you on the floor!!!
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Old 03-11-2010, 01:51 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mfdrookie516 View Post
dont smell it! it'll knock you on the floor!!!
Funny you mention that...In a bout of incredible stupidity, while adding ammonia to my tank, without even thinking, I took a GIANT wiff. It knocked me down on my butt, ugh. Burnt my nostrial right down to my lungs. Like my Dad always said, "There is no point in being stupid unless you show it.".
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Old 03-11-2010, 02:25 PM   #12
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LOL - just put the ammonia in my tank - just opening the bottle was enough for me!! YUCK.
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