while cycling Nitrites Staying at 4 ppm. Suggestions welcome.

ericb007

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So, as the title suggests.

New tank - 10 gallon waterbox cube.

Fishless cycle using with Dr. Tims. Also "live rock" the LFS has rock which they called live and was sitting in a tank at the end,.

Dr Tims
Live Rock
Live Sand

Test kids: Red Sea Kit (ammonia, Nitrate, nitrate, PH, Alk; Apex also monitoring PH, ORP, Temp, Salinity)

Ammonia Spiked to 5 ppm, during the first week did a 25% water change, dropped to 3 ppm then it tapered off (assuming the sand is feeding ammonia a bit too).

Nitrates spiked as this was happening, slow rise. Finally settled at 4 ppm. Been there for 3 days so far.
Note: Red sea tests stop at 1 ppm. Been mixing RO/DI water 1 to 8 (14 ml RO/DI and 2 ml tank water) or 1 to 4 (12 ml to 4 ml tank water) in the test kits to measure the higher numbers.

Last night Nitrate was getting out of control, about 55 ppm. Did another 25% water change, so that when it is ready for fish, I don't need do to several 30% water changes.

Current Levels:
Ammonia 0.2 ppm
Nitrite 4 ppm
Nitrate ~45-50 (slightly up 2- 5 ppm if you take last nights water change 0.75(55ppm) = 41.25.


Two questions:
1. Should I dose ammonia today to keep the ammonia bacteria colony expanding? I haven't added any since Day 1 on the Dr Tims, this is now 11 Days later.

2. Should I do anything about the nitrite or just keep monitor and expect it to come down? Nitrate has been steadily increasing (albeit a little slower yesterday to today than before).

PH has been been rising and falling but right now steady at 7.81. The lowest it dropped was 7.62 (right after first ammonia dose) and has been falling during the day and rising at night, steadily increasing to 7.81.

If there is any other relevant information, let me know and I'll provide it.
 
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Cell

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If you are reading nitrite, then you can toss your nitrate tests. Nitrate tests do not work in the presence of nitrite because they break down nitrate into nitrite to measure. Nitrite is not harmful to marine fish. If you can spike ammonia and it processes in 24 hours, you are good to go.
 

fishhead1973

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Add a piece of frozen shrimp and a whole thing of brightwell micro bacteria 7 give it two months. Lights off during that time after that time is up do a 20 percent water change. Give it a couple days then add fish I would even recommend carbon dosing it will help with a good bacterial population only use a half recommended dose got to do it every day though your tank will go thought the cycles so fast and your fish will in good health 10 percent water change every week very important in a small tank. You have to learn the science behind reefing .
 

Azedenkae

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So, as the title suggests.

New tank - 10 gallon waterbox cube.

Fishless cycle using with Dr. Tims. Also "live rock" the LFS has rock which they called live and was sitting in a tank at the end,.

Dr Tims
Live Rock
Live Sand

Test kids: Red Sea Kit (ammonia, Nitrate, nitrate, PH, Alk; Apex also monitoring PH, ORP, Temp, Salinity)

Ammonia Spiked to 5 ppm, during the first week did a 25% water change, dropped to 3 ppm then it tapered off (assuming the sand is feeding ammonia a bit too).

Nitrates spiked as this was happening, slow rise. Finally settled at 4 ppm. Been there for 3 days so far.
Note: Red sea tests stop at 1 ppm. Been mixing RO/DI water 1 to 8 (14 ml RO/DI and 2 ml tank water) or 1 to 4 (12 ml to 4 ml tank water) in the test kits to measure the higher numbers.

Last night Nitrate was getting out of control, about 55 ppm. Did another 25% water change, so that when it is ready for fish, I don't need do to several 30% water changes.

Current Levels:
Ammonia 0.2 ppm
Nitrite 4 ppm
Nitrate ~45-50 (slightly up 2- 5 ppm if you take last nights water change 0.75(55ppm) = 41.25.


Two questions:
1. Should I dose ammonia today to keep the ammonia bacteria colony expanding? I haven't added any since Day 1 on the Dr Tims, this is now 11 Days later.

2. Should I do anything about the nitrite or just keep monitor and expect it to come down? Nitrate has been steadily increasing (albeit a little slower yesterday to today than before).

PH has been been rising and falling but right now steady at 7.81. The lowest it dropped was 7.62 (right after first ammonia dose) and has been falling during the day and rising at night, steadily increasing to 7.81.

If there is any other relevant information, let me know and I'll provide it.
Huh, another case of 'live rock' from the LFS not really being able to handle ammonia or nitrite that well. In such cases I always suspect the live rock may be dry rock that had only really sat in a tank at the LFS for a short while, or were transported without water and had die-off of microbes potentially. Otherwise from 'good quality' live rock you'd expect ammonia and nitrite to be processed pretty well.

Anyways, so you are following Dr. Tim's fishless cycling? I suggest following it more closely, or follow a different method. Dr. Tim does not call for water changes unless ammonia and/or nitrite spikes above 5ppm.

So question is, do you still want to follow Dr. Tim's method? Or are you looking for something different?
 

Salt_Life

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So, as the title suggests.

New tank - 10 gallon waterbox cube.

Fishless cycle using with Dr. Tims. Also "live rock" the LFS has rock which they called live and was sitting in a tank at the end,.

Dr Tims
Live Rock
Live Sand

Test kids: Red Sea Kit (ammonia, Nitrate, nitrate, PH, Alk; Apex also monitoring PH, ORP, Temp, Salinity)

Ammonia Spiked to 5 ppm, during the first week did a 25% water change, dropped to 3 ppm then it tapered off (assuming the sand is feeding ammonia a bit too).

Nitrates spiked as this was happening, slow rise. Finally settled at 4 ppm. Been there for 3 days so far.
Note: Red sea tests stop at 1 ppm. Been mixing RO/DI water 1 to 8 (14 ml RO/DI and 2 ml tank water) or 1 to 4 (12 ml to 4 ml tank water) in the test kits to measure the higher numbers.

Last night Nitrate was getting out of control, about 55 ppm. Did another 25% water change, so that when it is ready for fish, I don't need do to several 30% water changes.

Current Levels:
Ammonia 0.2 ppm
Nitrite 4 ppm
Nitrate ~45-50 (slightly up 2- 5 ppm if you take last nights water change 0.75(55ppm) = 41.25.


Two questions:
1. Should I dose ammonia today to keep the ammonia bacteria colony expanding? I haven't added any since Day 1 on the Dr Tims, this is now 11 Days later.

2. Should I do anything about the nitrite or just keep monitor and expect it to come down? Nitrate has been steadily increasing (albeit a little slower yesterday to today than before).

PH has been been rising and falling but right now steady at 7.81. The lowest it dropped was 7.62 (right after first ammonia dose) and has been falling during the day and rising at night, steadily increasing to 7.81.

If there is any other relevant information, let me know and I'll provide it.
I am literally exactly where you are in the cycle. My nitrite will not go away. My ammonia is basically 0. I added a second dose of ammonia 2 days ago and it’s already 0 again but my nitrite has stood steady around 4ppm idk what to do. I am on day 15. Unfortunately Dr Tim’s product did not cycle as fast as suggested. Let me know if you find a solution!
 

brandon429

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Aze you missed again informing them of skip cycling, don’t do dr Tim’s when using pet store wet live rock it’s a waste of money.


Ammonia Spiked to 5 ppm, during the first week did a 25% water change, dropped to 3 ppm then it tapered off (assuming the sand is feeding ammonia a bit too).

it’s now .2 which is just about all Red Sea reads.

That’s just the best his testing can report, dont celebrate too soon this means cycled fully. That’s not a seneye ammonia report, we can see five hundred cycled reefs showing .2 on red sea simply search out any red sea misread posts there’s hundreds, they’re not applying tan conversion from the instructions on the test


you know they’re not including TAN factors in the numbers reported


what does .2 TAN out to after starting at 5 ppm? Motioned ammonia, it’s cycled.

Aze
when you do cycle troubleshoots you train new reefers to be doubtful and to be uncertain

it would align better with today’s actual cycle studies if you’d not do that
 
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brandon429

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for accurate assessment on your lfs skip cycle rock and see the tan portion @ericb007



the relevant info we need in addition to the above is a full tank picture.


you have a specialized cycle, called a skip cycle. See these hundred examples just like your tank:
 
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brandon429

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@Salt_Life , you are done cycling too

heres your rules thread as to why you’re done, and not stalled at all



both cycles in this thread are done.

you both can make a macna start date with your reefs now with the info linked here.

nitrite in display reef tank cannot stall a cycle, not ever. It’s been told to us that it can stall a cycle, so you’ll buy more bottle bac. The first cycle from Eric didn’t even need bottle bac he skipped the cycle day 1
 
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ericb007

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I read through the skip cycle and possibly, it is what happened. I just didn’t trust the LFS live rock. Figured dr tim’s couldn’t hurt. I would agree the skip cycle is probable. However, its based on the ammonia that live sand can bring to the table. My anmonia spiked extremely high. How high? Don’t know. I didn’t test before the first ammonia dose (1st mistake). And after the dose the readings were off my chart for several days. I didn’t mix tank with RO/DI water for more accurate readings until it was coming down slowly.

after that text wall: Thanks everyone for the help.

conclusion of what happened:
After the advice to ignore nitrates until nitrite dropped and nitrite not being harmful (I searched and verified this advice), I spiked ammonia to 2 ppm, it took a little over two days to come down. I spiked ammonia again. It took just under two days to drop to safe levels. I waited another day, did 20% water change then added fish. (I bought a seachem ammonia monitor and put in in the tank incase). Day four of fish (2 small clowns - check note below) and they’re doing well. Just added 3 small hermits today to eat what they’re missing.

tested nitrite today: 0.2 ppm

tested nitrate today: ~ 50 ppm (don’t know if 0.2 nitrite affects that)

Will monitor this week, then place an order for a zoanthid polyp (or 2) and a pulsing xenia.

Note: i hope people don’t think over stock - 2 small clowns, about 1.5 inch in size) this tank is to get the wife used to the noise before I get a large tank (looking at RS S-500 or about that size).
 
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Azedenkae

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I read through the skip cycle and possibly, it is what happened. I just didn’t trust the LFS live rock. Figured dr tim’s couldn’t hurt. I would agree the skip cycle is probable. However, its based on the ammonia that live sand can bring to the table. My anmonia spiked extremely high. How high? Don’t know. I didn’t test before the first ammonia dose (1st mistake). And after the dose the readings were off my chart for several days. I didn’t mix tank with RO/DI water for more accurate readings until it was coming down slowly.

after that text wall: Thanks everyone for the help.

conclusion of what happened:
After the advice to ignore nitrates until nitrite dropped and nitrite not being harmful (I searched and verified this advice), I spiked ammonia to 2 ppm, it took a little over two days to come down. I spiked ammonia again. It took just under two days to drop to safe levels. I waited another day, did 20% water change then added fish. (I bought a seachem ammonia monitor and put in in the tank incase). Day four of fish (2 small clowns - check note below) and they’re doing well. Just added 3 small hermits today to eat what they’re missing.

tested nitrite today: 0.2 ppm

tested nitrate today: ~ 50 ppm (don’t know if 0.2 nitrite affects that)

Will monitor this week, then place an order for a zoanthid polyp (or 2) and a pulsing xenia.

Note: i hope people don’t think over stock - 2 small clowns, about 1.5 inch in size) this tank is to get the wife used to the noise before I get a large tank (looking at RS S-500 or about that size).
Nice, glad to hear things are working out. Yeah, theoretically live rock from a LFS should be 'established' and fully able to handle the expected 2ppm ammonia per day. Back when I used to live in Australia, that was often the case. We would get actual live rock that was just in the ocean not so long ago. Here though, it seems to be very common for 'live rock' in LFS tanks to not really be that well established at all. Which as you can tell, yeah is likely the case here given that during all of this you were spiking ammonia to 2ppm ammonia and it took more than a day to get down to 0. Which is why I always suggest to check to see if a tank is truly cycled, even if one got live rock and all that. Despite what 'should be' the case, one could never trust a vendor 100%.
 
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