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Old 06-16-2011, 03:15 PM   #1
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First timer - Fishless Cycle advice

Hello to all - and many thanks for all the amazingly informative posts here - I just joined up after a long time lurking and reading countless postings. I have jumped into the hobby with both feet now, and have started a 55 gallon freshwater tank. I elected to use the fishless cycle, given all the positive feedback it has garnered. Okay, so here is my first ever REAL post:

I am at Day 11 of my fishless cycle, and was hoping one of the more experienced aquarists could give me some feedback... Here are my test results thus far:

Water pH: 8.2 (Consistent with city water report)
Water Temp: 80-84 (Can't seem to get higher than 84 - 200W heater)

Day ----- Ammonia ----- Nitrites ----- Nitrates
1 -- 8.0 -- 0.0 -- 0.0
2 -- 8.0 -- 0.0 -- 0.0
3 -- 8.0 -- 0.0 -- 0.0
4 -- 4.0 -- 0.0 -- 0.0 (30% PWC to get Ammo down)
5 -- 4.0 -- 0.0 -- 0.0
6 -- 4.0 -- 1.0 -- 0.0
7 -- 2.0 -- >5.0 -- 5.0
8 -- 0.0 -- >5.0 -- 2.5 (Added 4.0 mL Ammo)
9 -- 1.0 -- >5.0 -- 80.0
10 - 0.25 -- >5.0 -- 5.0 (50% PWC)(Added 4.0 mL Ammo)
11 - 0.0 -- >5.0 -- 5.0 (Today)(Added 4.5mL Ammo)

And that's where I am right now. Nitrates seemed to spike a LOT on Day 9 - could that be erroneous? They have stayed at 5.0 despite a 50% water change yesterday (Nitrites must be WAY off the chart, because they are still above 5 today after the PWC).

How am I looking so far? Should I not worry about any more PWCs? Just keep re-dosing Ammonia for now?

Thanks very much!!!
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Old 06-16-2011, 03:32 PM   #2
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Welcome Aboard!

I'd say you're fishless cycle is looking great. I'd suggest waiting till your ammo drops again (no need in wasting a dosing) and do a large PWC to bring your nitrites (no2) back down to a readable level. Many times it gets well above 5ppm but the test can't show it since it's maxed out.
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Old 06-17-2011, 05:20 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Mr. Limpet
Welcome Aboard!

I'd say you're fishless cycle is looking great. I'd suggest waiting till your ammo drops again (no need in wasting a dosing) and do a large PWC to bring your nitrites (no2) back down to a readable level. Many times it gets well above 5ppm but the test can't show it since it's maxed out.
Thanks very much! I actually did do a 50% PWC but it had no effect on the nitrites. Same test results today, as well. I ran the nitrate test twice and got 5.0 both times. Do I need to do a larger PWC?
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Old 06-17-2011, 05:58 PM   #4
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I'd go ahead and try to knock no2 down to about .5-1. Back to back 50% pwc's will probably get it done for you. Consider the bucket carrying as practice for when you have fish in there .
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Old 06-17-2011, 06:19 PM   #5
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Humm... A 50% PWC should have knocked it down to 2.5ppm, so that's a bit odd. I agree with eco and a couple more PWC are in order. I'd also suggest testing your tap water and see what's coming out of it (all 4 tests), so you have a base number to work from.
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Old 06-17-2011, 10:26 PM   #6
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Got it - I'll do it tomorrow and see what happens. Thanks very much!
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