Cycling Question (imagine that)

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JoeSchmo45

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Hello R2R!

I was just hoping for some advice with cycling. I'm on my second reef tank and am currently cycling a reefer 170. I started the cycle by adding bacteria and ammonia 33 days ago. Since then I have added ammonia up to 2ppm every time the ammonia drops to zero (a good 8 times now). Yesterday my ammonia and nitrite were zero and my nitrates were off the chart. I did a large water change just to get the nitrates down. They were around 40-50 after the water change. I went ahead and added ammonia AGAIN because I'm looking for that magic zeroing out in 24 hours that I keep reading about. Tonight after testing (24 hours after dosing) my ammonia is .25 and my nitrites are back up to 2. I didn't test nitrates because I know the results are messed up with high nitrites in the water.

My question is this - do I need to keep bringing the ammonia up to 2 every time they drop to zero? Can I just let it go because my nitrates go so high? I've zeroed out both ammonia and nitrite a couple of times, but it takes at least 2 days for that to happen. I'm not showing zero after 24 hours. The ammonia is close to zero, but not nitrite. Any recommendations? To keep dosing ammonia or not to keep dosing ammonia...that is the question!

Any help is appreciated!

Thanks!
Joe
 
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ReefRy

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Sounds like you started another mini-cycle, kinda like if you add too many fish at once to an unestablished system. As Tiki said, youre most likely already cycled. Ive found it takes 23 days, give or take, so you should be fine. Once you test 0 ammonia and nitrites, do a decent size water change, wait a couple days, and add a few fish.
 
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JoeSchmo45

JoeSchmo45

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I really appreciate the help. I'll do what you all suggested. Let it sit a couple days, make sure Ammonia and nitrite are zero again and then do a huge water change to lower the nitrates. Thanks again!
 
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