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Old 08-09-2011, 11:00 AM   #1301
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I am thinking of rinsing my goldfish filter foam into my new cichlid aquarium to seed it. Should I do this or will it cause problems?
Yep, I agree with Deckape. Anything from the other tank will be a big help. If you don't want to remove the entire filter from the Goldfish tank, you could always take a pair of scissors to it and donate 30% or so.

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Old 08-09-2011, 11:40 AM   #1302
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great guide eco it's been a great help. I have one question though. I have a penguin biowheel filter, which has the biowheel as well as a carbon filter. I read what you said about just getting some filter media that I can cut to size and putting it in there instead of the carbon filter cartridge. I couldn't find any like that at my local petsmart, and I was wondering if there was an online store that sells what you are talking about. If so, could you point me in the right direction?

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Old 08-09-2011, 11:45 AM   #1303
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great guide eco it's been a great help. I have one question though. I have a penguin biowheel filter, which has the biowheel as well as a carbon filter. I read what you said about just getting some filter media that I can cut to size and putting it in there instead of the carbon filter cartridge. I couldn't find any like that at my local petsmart, and I was wondering if there was an online store that sells what you are talking about. If so, could you point me in the right direction?

Thanks, Ben
I actually found mine at Petsmart. It's just a rolled up piece of blue media you can take a pair of scissors to and cut to size. This isn't the exact one I have, but it's the same idea-
Clothing, Toys, Electronics, Jewelry, Jaclyn Smith - Kmart.com

I'm glad the guide helped you out
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Old 08-09-2011, 02:40 PM   #1304
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thanks, i'll keep an eye out at petsmart and if I don't see it anytime soon i'll buy that from kmart. I appreciate it
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Old 08-11-2011, 08:28 AM   #1305
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Great read!!

quick question. I have a 40g with a bio-wheel, when I set up my new tank with a canister, will one of the media filters (not the wheel) from the bio-wheel be good to add to the new filter to start cycling?
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Old 08-11-2011, 09:30 AM   #1306
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Great read!!

quick question. I have a 40g with a bio-wheel, when I set up my new tank with a canister, will one of the media filters (not the wheel) from the bio-wheel be good to add to the new filter to start cycling?
Any media or gravel and or decorations from an established tank will help seed a new one. Just be careful you aren't robbing Peter to pay Paul and causing issues with the established tank.
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Old 08-11-2011, 09:30 AM   #1307
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Great read!!

quick question. I have a 40g with a bio-wheel, when I set up my new tank with a canister, will one of the media filters (not the wheel) from the bio-wheel be good to add to the new filter to start cycling?
Sure! Anything helps, even a handful of gravel from the other tank...but used filter media is the absolute best. If you're switching to a canister, I'd jam the filter down in with the ceramic media you'll be using so it can colonize the BB there . Good luck!
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Old 08-12-2011, 03:43 PM   #1308
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hey eco, i found some filter media that I can cut to size. the problem is, there isnt much room in my filter to put the extra media in for seeding. I've seen you say to "stuff" the extra media in beside the established one. I figure I could cram the new media into my filter, but it would be pretty stuffed if i did. Is this a good idea?
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Old 08-12-2011, 04:01 PM   #1309
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hey eco, i found some filter media that I can cut to size. the problem is, there isnt much room in my filter to put the extra media in for seeding. I've seen you say to "stuff" the extra media in beside the established one. I figure I could cram the new media into my filter, but it would be pretty stuffed if i did. Is this a good idea?
As long as it doesn't severely limit flow it'll be fine. If you can't get it in there, I'd probably wrap it around the filter intake and secure it with some rubber bands.
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Old 08-12-2011, 04:05 PM   #1310
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As long as it doesn't severely limit flow it'll be fine. If you can't get it in there, I'd probably wrap it around the filter intake and secure it with some rubber bands.
Will it take longer to seed if it is not in direct contact with the established media? How long should I leave it in there before I take the old one out? I have a biowheel 100 btw
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Old 08-12-2011, 04:29 PM   #1311
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Will it take longer to seed if it is not in direct contact with the established media? How long should I leave it in there before I take the old one out? I have a biowheel 100 btw
Ideally you'd want it right up against the media you're trying to seed, but at this point it's really just about getting the bacteria into the tank. I'd keep it in as long as possible, and once the tank has been cycled for some time, you can slowly remove it (preferably a bit at a time using scissors). Ideally you'd just keep it in there until it was falling apart. Having it wrapped around the intake will also help if you plan on having shrimp or fry in the tank so they don't get sucked up into the filter. That's what I do with my tank that has RCS.
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Old 08-12-2011, 04:31 PM   #1312
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Ideally you'd want it right up against the media you're trying to seed, but at this point it's really just about getting the bacteria into the tank. I'd keep it in as long as possible, and once the tank has been cycled for some time, you can slowly remove it (preferably a bit at a time using scissors). Ideally you'd just keep it in there until it was falling apart. Having it wrapped around the intake will also help if you plan on having shrimp or fry in the tank so they don't get sucked up into the filter. That's what I do with my tank that has RCS.
thanks eco, you're the man. I'll get back to you if i have any problems getting it in there
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Old 08-15-2011, 08:41 PM   #1313
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Hi folks. Thanks eco23, useful thread. However I must be honest, I didn't read all 132 pages (yet). My question concerns high (off chart) readings of NO2 and NO3 in day 24 of cycling. My readings have stayed consistant for 6 straight days now. They are NH3/4-0 (fed daily to 3-4 ppm), NO2-10+, NO3-200+. GH-180, KH-240. Two filers, plenty of aeration, constant water temp of 79.4F. Test with API 5-in-1 strips (yes I know they aren't that accurate). Any sugestions?? Perhaps a WC 20-30%??
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Old 08-15-2011, 08:50 PM   #1314
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Hi folks. Thanks eco23, useful thread. However I must be honest, I didn't read all 132 pages (yet). My question concerns high (off chart) readings of NO2 and NO3 in day 24 of cycling. My readings have stayed consistant for 6 straight days now. They are NH3/4-0 (fed daily to 3-4 ppm), NO2-10+, NO3-200+. GH-180, KH-240. Two filers, plenty of aeration, constant water temp of 79.4F. Test with API 5-in-1 strips (yes I know they aren't that accurate). Any sugestions?? Perhaps a WC 20-30%??
Welcome to the site . Assuming your tests are accurate (which with strips is kind of guesswork), I think you're due for a massive pwc. If you're gonna make the effort to do one, I'd make it large enough to reduce the no2 down to .5-1ppm. In some cases that may mean draining it down to the gravel or doing a couple back to back changes. It doesn't hurt and can sometimes help to do water changes, just be sure the tank doesn't dry out in the process.

Don't be surprised if the no2 jumps right back up tomorrow, but the pwc will restore buffers and nutrients to the water that prevent stalls and pH crashes (do you know your pH?)

And don't bother reading the whole thing, lol. A lot of it is just us chatting, and I've actually updated the guide since it was originally put together, so there's not really any additional info you'll pick up by reading most of the posts. Otherwise...make sure you get your reading glasses and give your eyes a rest once in a while

Good luck and keep us posted!
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Old 08-15-2011, 09:01 PM   #1315
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WOW! What a fast reply! Tap water tests no ammonia, no nitrites or nitrates, 7.0 pH, GH & KH have been of the charts as we have very hard water(good for cichlids). Since starting the cycle, I have seen a slight rise to pH 7.5 almost consistently. Ammonia rose to 4ppm and took 7 day to drop to 0. Has stayed at 0 with a daily feeding to get to 4ppm. Didn't get nitrites until day 7 as well and both nitrites and nitrates have risen steady to their present high readings. I'll do water change tomorrow and see what happens.
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Old 08-15-2011, 09:06 PM   #1316
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WOW! What a fast reply! Tap water tests no ammonia, no nitrites or nitrates, 7.0 pH, GH & KH have been of the charts as we have very hard water(good for cichlids). Since starting the cycle, I have seen a slight rise to pH 7.5 almost consistently. Ammonia rose to 4ppm and took 7 day to drop to 0. Has stayed at ) with a daily feeding to get to 4ppm. Didn't get nitrites until day 7 as well and both nitrites and nitrates have risen steady to their present high readings. I'll do water change tomorrow and see what happens.
The iPad is close by at all times, haha. The wife is a little tired of it chiming every time there's a new post...but I'm addicted to the site and it seems like I'm always here

Things seem to be going great. The swing up in pH is a little strange. Ammonia does have basic properties which can slightly elevate pH...but usually nothing dramatic. I'd more likely chalk it up to the strip tests. The thing to really look out for is any sharp drops in pH. If you see any, do a quick 50% pwc to prevent a pH crash.

Make sure to keep us posted.
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Old 08-21-2011, 12:04 PM   #1317
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HI Everyone,

Still need some reassurance. I did a 20% pwc on Aug 25. Since then these are my daily readings and what I've done:

25) Tuesday August 16 11 AM
20% PWC - 1 hour later NH3/4-0, GH-180, Kh-240, pH-7, NO2-10+, NO3-200+ Added ammonia

26) Wednsday August 17 6PM
NH3/4-0, GH&KH will no longer be recorded, pH-8.0, NO2-5+, NO3-80
measurable reduction in NO2 & NO3. May be due to change it testing supply changed from API 5-in-1 strips to API Master Test Kit Liquids. Ammonia added.

27) Thursday August 18 6:30 PM
NH/3/4-0, pH-8.0, NO2-5+, NO3-40 added ammonia

28) Friday August 19 5:30 PM
HN3/4-0, pH-7.6, NO2-5+, NO3-40 added ammonia

29) Saturday August 20 3PM
NH3/4-0.25, pH -7.6, NO2-5+, NO3-20 Added 1 capful ammonia

I did see a modest change in NO2 & NO3 levels on the 26th since then I see NO3 nitrates dropping but not the NO2 nitrites. I cannot understand this as I would have expected the opposite, NO2 to drop and NO3 to be stable or only slightly higher. However I'm distressed to see nitrites remaining "off the chart" on the API test. So, another water change? More than 50%? Suggestons welcome.
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Old 08-21-2011, 12:39 PM   #1318
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Things still seem on track. The no3 dropping is likely a testing issue rather than something that is actually happening. NitrAte only leaves the tank via water changes or plants absorbing them (there's a 3rd way from denitrifying bacteria, but you'll never notice) Even if the tank was heavily planted, your bio-filter should be pumping out so much, that I can't imagine they'd be able to keep up with them and actually cause a reduction. For the nitrAte test, make sure you shake the #2 solution for a full 30 seconds, and the entire tube for a solid minute, let it sit for 5 minutes and record the results then.

At this point a pwc isn't a bad idea. If you're gonna make the effort, it might as well be a big one. Personally I'd basically drain that thing down to the gravel and refill. The goal should be to get the no2 down around .5-1ppm. Just try to do it rather quickly so the walls and decorations don't dry out. It won't be a surprise if the no2 jumps right back up, but you'll be restoring things to the water that the bacteria needs.

Keep us posted, you're right on track
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Old 08-21-2011, 12:51 PM   #1319
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Thanks eco23, you jogged my memory and I HAVEN"T shaken the test bottles at all. That's probably it. I have done the tubes correctly, however if I didn't get the proper proportions of chemicals in, then the test would be suspect. I'll see what happens over the next couple of days before doing the major pwc. BTW no plants, this is going to be a mbuna tank; rocks, sand and crushed coral.
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Old 08-21-2011, 01:31 PM   #1320
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??????? Just tested. Shook up bottles really well, tested and let tubes sit for 5 minutes and got some really strange (albeit wonderful) readings.
NH3/4-0, pH- 7.7, NO2-0 (zero, oh happy days!!), NO3 - 40.
First zero reading for nitrites ever. I'll monitor for the next few days and IF readings continue, we are done! Having said this, I do suspect such a sudden change in the readings...still waiting.
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