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Old 09-10-2011, 11:14 AM   #1381
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Hello and thank you so much for doing all this work for our benefit! I myself am about to cycle my 30 gal. This is my second time around.I had this tank set up for a couple years and took it down. Now this time I want to do a "kill no fish" cycle, lol. Question: when using an old filter from an est. tank, will I really have to do the huge water change before fish. If my nitrates are below 20 can I do a smaller one? Thanks.
Let Eco confirm this but if your nitrate are below 20 I think you can get away with a smaller change. But the pwc don't just reduce nitrate, they also replenish minerals in the water that the bacteria will use up, so I'd say the larger the change the better. But nitrates are probably going to rise pretty high and the seeded media shouldn't affect nitrates (it doesn't keep them low; it'll just help build the bacteria faster).

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Old 09-10-2011, 11:48 AM   #1382
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Hello and thank you so much for doing all this work for our benefit! I myself am about to cycle my 30 gal. This is my second time around.I had this tank set up for a couple years and took it down. Now this time I want to do a "kill no fish" cycle, lol. Question: when using an old filter from an est. tank, will I really have to do the huge water change before fish. If my nitrates are below 20 can I do a smaller one? Thanks.
Welcome to the site

If you do a fishless cycle, trust me...you're nitrAte will be over 20 and require a massive water change. The nitrAtes will always build up while a tank cycles as the ammonia and nitrIte are converted. When a tank is cycled with fish it's not as noticeable simply because you have to constantly be doing large water changes to keep toxin levels low so the fish don't start floating.

If you've already got an established piece of filter media that's a great start. Keep us posted on how it's going
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Old 09-12-2011, 12:19 AM   #1383
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Understood. That makes perfect sense. Got my R.O. water in at 28 degrees (c) with some shells to raise P.H. a bit (to 8). Took them back out when it got there. Hope that's not too high. It was at a lovely 6.7 before. Got pure amonia in the water at 6 drops per ten gallons (18 drops total). The reading was around 0.7 ppm, so I did a 15% water change and got it down to the target range of 0.4 ppm.15% was a good guess I think. Will do 5 drops per ten gallons from now on. Pretty sure I'm on the right track. Hope the established filter does it's magic like it did the first time I set up this tank. Did it in two and a half days!
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Old 09-12-2011, 12:40 AM   #1384
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Understood. That makes perfect sense. Got my R.O. water in at 28 degrees (c) with some shells to raise P.H. a bit (to 8). Took them back out when it got there. Hope that's not too high. It was at a lovely 6.7 before. Got pure amonia in the water at 6 drops per ten gallons (18 drops total). The reading was around 0.7 ppm, so I did a 15% water change and got it down to the target range of 0.4 ppm.15% was a good guess I think. Will do 5 drops per ten gallons from now on. Pretty sure I'm on the right track. Hope the established filter does it's magic like it did the first time I set up this tank. Did it in two and a half days!
I feel like I'm always here thanks to the app on my iPad. The wife hates when that thing chimes telling me a subscribed thread has new posts, haha!

A couple things...are you dosing to 0.4ppm or 4ppm? 4.0 is what you should be shooting for, otherwise you're really not going to build much of a bio-filter. There really wouldn't be much purpose to it.

Are you planning on using RO water once the tank is stocked? If so, are you planning on using additives to refresh trace minerals and buffers? That's going to be super important because pure RO water won't be suitable for fish, and will most likely also make your tank very difficult to cycle since there are no nutrients to colonize the bacteria or buffers to hold the pH steady.
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Old 09-12-2011, 12:43 AM   #1385
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I feel like I'm always here thanks to the app on my iPad. The wife hates when that thing chimes telling me a subscribed thread has new posts, haha!
I deleted my notifications, my phone kept on going off
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Old 09-12-2011, 01:11 AM   #1386
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I feel like I'm always here thanks to the app on my iPad. The wife hates when that thing chimes telling me a subscribed thread has new posts, haha!

A couple things...are you dosing to 0.4ppm or 4ppm? 4.0 is what you should be shooting for, otherwise you're really not going to build much of a bio-filter. There really wouldn't be much purpose to it.

Are you planning on using RO water once the tank is stocked? If so, are you planning on using additives to refresh trace minerals and buffers? That's going to be super important because pure RO water won't be suitable for fish, and will most likely also make your tank very difficult to cycle since there are no nutrients to colonize the bacteria or buffers to hold the pH steady.
Oh oh. I thought it was 0.4 ppm. Ahhh! Better go put more in right now. Gonna try another 30 drops ( 30 gal. tank) Thanks!! Yes about the R. O. water, it's Culigan drinking water in the 5 gallon bottles. Our tap water is uninhabitable. Any suggestions on trace elements?
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Old 09-12-2011, 01:27 AM   #1387
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Oh oh. I thought it was 0.4 ppm. Ahhh! Better go put more in right now. Gonna try another 30 drops ( 30 gal. tank) Thanks!! Yes about the R. O. water, it's Culigan drinking water in the 5 gallon bottles. Our tap water is uninhabitable. Any suggestions on trace elements?
Glad we caught that...it would have been a rather quick, but potentially disastrous fishless cycle. One of the benefits of fishless cycling is the ability to pretty much fully stock your tank at once when it's done. Let's just say a decimal point can make a big difference, lol.

Out of curiosity (if you don't mind me asking), what's the deal with the tap water? Normally if it's uninhabitable for fish, it's in many cases a water source which should literally be condemned. If you've had high levels of contaminants or other issues it'd be worth contacting the health department if you haven't already. You'd be surprised how many people have found out through aquarium testing that there are serious problems with the water supply. I'm glad to hear you and your family aren't drinking it if there's issues.

As for the RO, almost all saltwater fish keepers use reverse osmosis. They sell additives which restore nutrients, buffers, electrolytes, etc...which are mandatory to have in an aquarium for both the fish and the bacteria. Honestly, I'd be surprised to see a tank even cycle in stripped RO water. Additives are readily available at most stores since they're so commonly used in SW. You'll need to do a bit of experimenting and get some practice to find the right mixture, and make sure you are cautious once you have fish that the additives are the same for every batch so you don't shock the fish during water changes. I don't have a particular brand to recommend since I've never used it, but I know some are made by Kent's and also Seachem. They're intended specifically for mixing with RO water. Should be easy to find both online or in your lfs
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Old 09-12-2011, 01:38 AM   #1388
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Our water far exceeds the health standards here. It's really wonderful water to drink but has a P.H. of around 8.5-9 and it's softened with a salt brine softener.My L.F.S. people told me that it would eventually make my fish ill and possibly kill them. Will try to get trace elements tomorrow. Gonna sign off now. Way past my bedtime, LOL. Thanks so much, will keep you posted.
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Old 09-15-2011, 08:59 PM   #1389
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Just heard about the fishless cycling process so I just started it on my 10gallon tank I plan to use for 1 goldfish. This forum was really helpful. I never new about the nitrogen cycle untill about a week ago! no wonder my goldfish never lived Once I learn how to do this I will have no problem doing it to a 40gallon tank.(which I plan to get if my fish lives and once it outgrows the 10gallon)
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Old 09-15-2011, 09:14 PM   #1390
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Just heard about the fishless cycling process so I just started it on my 10gallon tank I plan to use for 1 goldfish. This forum was really helpful. I never new about the nitrogen cycle untill about a week ago! no wonder my goldfish never lived Once I learn how to do this I will have no problem doing it to a 40gallon tank.(which I plan to get if my fish lives and once it outgrows the 10gallon)
I'm glad you found the site and this article . Let us know if we can be of any help. Good luck!
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Old 09-16-2011, 10:22 AM   #1391
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I have a question. I dont have a heater for my tank and it says to keep the temperature high mine is around 75...is this ok? or wont the bacteria grow? just wondering I planed on having goldfish wich dont need a heater so I did not buy one.
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Old 09-16-2011, 10:42 AM   #1392
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I have a question. I dont have a heater for my tank and it says to keep the temperature high mine is around 75...is this ok? or wont the bacteria grow? just wondering I planed on having goldfish wich dont need a heater so I did not buy one.
No problem there . The bacteria colonizes the fastest at 77-85 degrees, but anything remotely close to that is fine.
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Old 09-16-2011, 10:50 AM   #1393
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and also it says to dose the tanks ammonia up to 4 is this for all tank sizes. I only have a 10 gallon and will only get 1 fish. Will the bacteria die if I only get one? should I only dose my tank with ammonia to 2-3ppm?
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Old 09-16-2011, 11:01 AM   #1394
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and also it says to dose the tanks ammonia up to 4 is this for all tank sizes. I only have a 10 gallon and will only get 1 fish. Will the bacteria die if I only get one? should I only dose my tank with ammonia to 2-3ppm?
The 4ppm is designed to simulate the ammonia your fish will be producing in the tank. It trains the bacteria to handle that amount of waste.

A Goldfish is an extremely messy fish and produces a lot of waste (ammonia). In fact, the minimum tank size for a single Goldfish is recommended at 20 gallons, plus an additional 10 gallons for any additional Goldfish...based off the fact of how much waste they create.

If it were a single Betta or other fish that only produced small amounts of toxins that you were putting into your tank...reducing the ammonia would be acceptable. However, since you're going to have a very dirty fish in a tank which really is a bit too small for him...I'd definitely stick with the 4ppm.

Do you have plans on getting a bigger tank in the future? I won't give you a hard time if you stick with the Goldfish, but there are a lot of fish which would be compatible and very happy in a 10 gallon tank. We'll be happy to share some ideas with you if you'd like
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Old 09-16-2011, 12:32 PM   #1395
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i do have another tank i think its a 40 gallon but i dont have a filter or a hood for it so when i get the extra money i will get these supplies. I should have all the money by next month. I go to petsmart for my fish, when the fish come in they are still babies about 1' and some even smaller, but since none of my fish have lived over 1 month i dont want to spend a lot of money untill i know what im doing If everything goes well into next month I will get everything.
in your opinion what is the best filter to get? because once i get the 40 gallon up and running I will want a nice big filter.

ohh... the 40gallon is supposed to be for reptiles but it holds water. So the top of it is a littler different is that ok?
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Old 09-16-2011, 12:44 PM   #1396
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ohh... the 40gallon is supposed to be for reptiles but it holds water. So the top of it is a littler different is that ok?
That I'd be a bit worried about. There should be a label on the underside of the tank which tells you if it's designed for terrarium, aquarium use or both. Tanks specifically built for reptiles will generally have much thinner glass and not be able to hold the massive pressure water creates. It might be able to hold water for a while...but there could potentially be catastrophic results after a period of time if it fails. Trust me when I say 40 gallons of water on the floor and fish flopping on the carpet would not be a good thing. If you can't find a label, I'd contact the manufacturer of the tank. Does it have a brace going from the front to the back?
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Old 09-16-2011, 12:55 PM   #1397
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it looks exactly live my 10 gallon except the top is a screen that u push in to lock. I can even see the white stuff in the corners like my 10 gallon. it also had the black plasitc around the bottom of it
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Old 09-16-2011, 01:07 PM   #1398
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well i tried to read the label at the bottom and all I saw was critter cage -_- ohh well a 40gallon long tank is only 129 but it only comes with a hood
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Old 09-16-2011, 01:27 PM   #1399
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well i tried to read the label at the bottom and all I saw was critter cage -_- ohh well a 40gallon long tank is only 129 but it only comes with a hood
Unfortunately I think that's bad news . I did a bit of quick research and have seen the Critter Cages are not useable as an aquarium. In fact, they seem to be notorious for using extremely thin glass. Something like a 5 galln tank might not be the end of the world...but a 40 gallon would exert a ton of pressure and IMO it'd just be a matter of time before it shattered

I know that Petco does a $1 per gallon sale several times per year. That's a great change to scoop one up at a great price. Personally I like purchasing everything separately because it let's you mix and match the type of light, filter, heater, etc... and get what you want instead of being stuck with the cheap crap they give you in the starter packs.

If you did pick up a 40 gallon, I'd suggest an AquaClear if you like the HOB style. Or a Fluval 305 would be absolutely perfect if you like canister filters (what I definitely prefer). Remember that the manufacturers like to over-rate their filters, so a good rule of thumb is to pick up double the recommended filtration. For example, on my 46 gallon tank I have a Fluval 405 which is rated for 100 gallon tank. Trying to get as close to double is your best bet.
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Old 09-16-2011, 10:29 PM   #1400
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now when i get the 40 gallon tank i plan on getting the aquaclear filter that does up to 70gallons. can i also add my other filter that does 20gallons to it as well? after the tank is cycled of course. And how many goldfish can I put in a 40gallon 3 right? I plan to stick with the ones that only get 6' I wanna have a telescope an oranda and a ryukin? or however its spelled
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