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JessicaandMarshall

My Tank Won't Cycle!

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It's been over 2 months now!

Ammonia 0

nitrite 0.1

nitrate 4-5

pH 8 (all my tanks are always 8, it's obviously our water)

My nitrites went to 0 once for 1 or two days, then they went back to 0.1 and they just stay there...... the water out of the tap is 0 for nitrites.

Also my nitrates won't rise highter than 4-5. When my nitrites were 0, my nitrates were down to 1!

What am I doing wrong?

Do you think it could be inadequate filtration? I don't remember how many times an hour the water turns over, I checked then forgot and now lost the box, but it's a reagent aquatech filter, and is supposed to be good for the size of tank I have, 44 gal.

Thanks

Jessica

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I am not sure but I am wondering if it is somehow a false reading, since you do have nitrates but they are low.

Do you have live plants?

I know that you are not able to get bio-spira but maybe there is some other product...

I am hoping that someone with greater knowledge will answer this!

:huh:

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One more thing, do you fish seem to be affected by the nitrites? I hope that you get this figured out fast.

:hi

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How often are you changing the water out of the tank?

How often are you doing a gravel siphon on the tank?

What kind of water conditioners are you using?

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Thanks =o)

Wynkin the fish killed all my live plants. I have one left, it's an arrowhead, but I doubt it's using very many nitrates. It has no leaves! yes that's right, no leaves, it just a stick! But I can see a bud starting, so I've just left it in the tank.

I don't think it's a false reading because I'm also cycling a 20 gal, it's nitrates are at 15, and it's only been 18 days.

Koko, I was changing 10% of the water daily, and gravel vaccuming once a week.

Then I stopped gravel vaccuming, I went 10 days, then had to break down and gravel vaccum because ....well I felt that I just had too.

I went a week with NO water changes, on day 7 I did a small water change, and gravel vaccumed on day 10 again. Again no change in nitrites or nitrates.

I've started doing 10% water changes again every day, since not doing them didn't seem to make a difference.

The fish don't seem bothered at all!! I did add aquarium salt. But right now I don't think I have any in the tank, I don't want to keep it in the tank all the time.

The highest my nitrites ever went during the cycle was 0.5 for one day and then they dropped again. The highest my nitrates have ever gone in the whole two months was 9-10ppm.

I pre age all my water, in 5 gallons jugs, so I don't use water conditioners, well I used cycle a few times if that counts, cycle has worked for me before, but this time it didn't really help....

I was looking at Bio Spira, but it said it was to start a tank, not cycle an already cycling tank...is that correct?

Yikes.

Jessica

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An extreme thought.....

What if I started all over.....like with fresh water, and used bio spira, I can order that online =o)

I want to cycle the 20 gal first though, it's only a 20 gal, but if the 44 gal got out of control ammonia or nitrites (shouldn't with bio spira) but just in case, I would have a place to put the fish....even though they would be royally crammed in a 20 gal..... oh and I could use the 20 gal to seed the 44?

I don't know what to do?

Or maybe I should buy a bigger filter.... or maybe I'm just a dork and am doing to many water changes????

sorry for rambling, I just don't know what to do LOL

Jessica

Edited by JessicaandMarshall

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How many fish in the 20 gal tank?

How many filters?

I would deffently not start over again to stressful on the goldfish.

I might try not doing a water change for a week if the nitrites are down you say to .1ppms. Let the good bugs try to catch up.

Also when was the last time you added salt and did a water change?

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I did a 10%water change today.

I have not added salt since last week.

The 44 gal is the tank I'm having a problem with, there are 4 fish in it.

It only has one filter, that is all that fits on the hood. Maybe a bigger one is in order?! It's a reagent aquatech filter.

The 20 gal only has one filter as well, and aquaclear 200. There are two fish in it, 1 is 1" or smaller and one is about 1.5" that is including tails.

Jessica

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One thing I might get for the 44 is a Boiwheel filter and use the other one at the same time :)

Okay I would now just test the water everyday keep a good eye on it but dont do a water change for a week UNLESS you see the nitrites at .5-1.0ppms. I would add some salt to the tank about 1 Table spoon for now. Also dont rince any filters right now leave it alone. Feed the fish like normal and lets seee what happens. Keep me posted :D

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I did a big mistake, i didnt cycle :o

I just left the water in the tank for a day with a filter on...

Next day i bought 2 fish and left them in bag for 30 mins, then left em in..

What happens if you dont cycle? (I didnt know)

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Guest gldfshkpr

JessicaandMarshall,

I pre age all my water, in 5 gallons jugs, so I don't use water conditioners,

That's fine as long as your water contains no chloramine. Commercial tap water usually does. Also, make sure your jugs aren't filled up too much. The water needs a wide surface area for the chlorine to off-gas efficiently. You really need to find out the size of that Regent. Sounds to me it could be too small for Golds. Most filters are rated for smaller fish. You need something rated for an 80 gallon tank at least. My personal choice in HOB filters on a budget is Aquamaster by Danner. Hope this helps!

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It sounds like the filter just don't have enough room for the good bacteria too thrive. Like was mentioned above I would add a biowheel filter too it and DON'T start over. You are basically there now so why start over. I like the emporers over the penguins because of the spray bar and the 280 would be a great addition too the tank.

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Jessica, if I remember right, your tank is the corner tank, or bowfront, or hectagon, or something, right? There wasnt much more space left on the hood to hang any other bigger filter?

Could you try to stuff some extra filter media into your filter? Or maybe add a sponge filter to the tank, its connected via airline tubing to an airpump. Its not the prettiest sight in the world, but you can hide it very good with some potted plants or something. They come in different sizes, depending on the size of the tank. Go with the glover leaf shaped one, its rated for a 35 gl tank. I think thats the highest a sponge filter will go, unless you make one yourself....

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Guest gldfshkpr

In addition to filter, media and water condition... try adding some more plants! Plant life does wonders for the natural cycle you're trying to simulate. Anacharis is one common variety, cheap and easy to hang in the tank. I keep mine bunched and floating. Driftwood is a haven for good bio-bugs too! I once put a chunk of seasoned driftwood in a tank I was cycling and it disolved the nitrites within minutes!

Edited by gldfshkpr

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Thank you everyone.

I do know the size of the filter, but I can't remember the number of times it turns the water over.

It's a 30-60. The only reason I got it was because I thought I could also use my aqua-tech. Then I got the hood out...and D'OH no room.

It's a pentagon tank, so it's not as narrow as the hex one. But yes you're right no room!

My water has cholorine, so it evaporates. I am going to start using water conditioners though because it's getting to be harder and harder to keep all these jugs filled heehee.

I can ADD a bio wheel to this filter apparently. I was reading about that the other night. Apparently you can add a bio wheel to the aqua-tech filters. I should look into that.

I can also get a sponge filter, add more filter media, or just outright buy a larger filter :D in addition to the first two suggestions.

Thank you for all your help.

I also want to get more live plants, I had several but the fish ate them, and wrecked them all.

I just am baffled as to why it won't cycle. I mean it's not the greatest set up, but newbies often show up with worse set ups and they can get their massively overstocked tanks to cycle and here I am with one within all limits and it just won't work?! LOL

Koko I will feed the fish as normal, and lay off on the water changes. I really don't think my nitrites will go over .5 they have only gone that high once in the entire cycle ;)

Now another question, in the cycling 20, the nitrates are at 40. But nitrites are still present. Once this tank cycles totally, could I use some water from it. Would that help out the 44?

Thanks a million

Jessica

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Oh yes water from a existing cycled tank is good for other tanks as long as there hasnt been any bad things that has happened in that tank. Like flukes things like that :)

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Theres a Whole bunch on Information on the left of the screen Tom :)

This will explain the cycle thing :)

http://www.kokosgoldfish.com/cycle.html

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Guest gldfshkpr

JessicaandMarshall, another factor... what is the temp of the tank? A tank under 70 degrees for instance will cycle much slower than a tank closer to 80 (fahrenheit). My tanks are between 65 and 70 lately, and I live in CA! Just another thought!

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Ohhh another thought. Maybe that's the problem. The 44 is around 70-72 even though we have the heat in our house cranked and the room temp is closer to 80!

The 20 gal is in the basement, and it's only at 68. I guess 68 really isn't too cold. I prefer the temp around 76...but meh what can yah do. (If you don't have a heater LOL)

The only cozy fish is the betta.

Thanks for all your help. I'll keep you all posted, and if you think of anything else I should know......

Jessica

P.S to TOM, KoKO is a M'am not a sir :P

Edited by JessicaandMarshall

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Hi Jessica,

How often do you test your water and when was the last time you tested it? I wondering how it is now. Although your last post was only from yesterday...

:D

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Wynkin, I test it everyday.

I'll post this weeks results. My nitrites are higher than they have been in 2 months, I am kind of worried. Let me go get my notes and I can post exactly what the results were....

On Novemeber 23: (it had been 10 days since my last gravel vac, and the water looked kind of gross) I did a gravel vac, which = a 25% water change because I didn't want to take out too much of the nitrates.

My nitrites before the vac were barely 0.1

nitrates 4

I added Cycle.

November 24th: nitrite 0.1

nitrate 4

November 25th: nitrite 0.1

nitrate 4-5

November 26th: nitrite 0.1 (I must have forgotten to write the nitrates down, I don't have a number for them on that day, but they were not over 4-5 or I would have remembered) I did a 10% water change because of the nitites

November 27th: nitrites 0.1

nitrates 5

November 28th nitrite 0.3

nitrate 5 The tank was looking really cloudy (bacteria growth?)

November 29th nitrites 0.8 (This is the highest they've been in 2 months of

cycling)

nitrates hard to read, my test jumps from 10-20, somewhere above 10 but less than 20.

AMmonia:0

OH and I only test ammonia about once a week or so. I seeded this tank with water from a 10 gal that I had going, and this tank never had ammonia readings.

My pH is always 8.

Jessica

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How big of a water change should I do? This tank has been set up since September 25th, and this is the first time my nitrites or nitrates have been this high....

I don't want to kill all the good bugs and have to drag this on any longer than I have too LOL.

You guys have been such a great help to me.

I'm not sure if I should do a 10% or a 25% change or.....

Thanks a million

Jessica

PS the fish do not seem stressed out. Three of the males (I thought 2 of them were girls, but they just got breeding spurs) and they are all chasing Whitie trying to get her to drop eggs....... She does not seem stressed either....

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