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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-26-2016, 03:06 AM Thread Starter
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Water parameters new tank

Hello, I just bought an API master test kit, and I was wondering if anyone could give me some input on how my 10 gallon tank is doing. It's only been set up and cycling for a week and was wondering if these are normal levels. The nitrates seem high but I'm not sure if it's completely accurate. I followed the directions but I'm not sure. It says nitrites are 0 ppm and the ammonia has a very slight green tinge to it. Pictures below. Thank you for any input

Edit: I forgot to mention that I had a bad start with some nitrifying bacteria that a LFS sold me, I started using tetra safestart 4 days ago and then used some more after doing 2 large water changes yesterday.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-26-2016, 03:52 AM
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Do you have nitrates in your tap water? There is no way your tank can be cycled while bypassing the nitrite stage.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-26-2016, 04:48 AM Thread Starter
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I just tested the bottled water I used . 0 nitrates

Last edited by Hydralotus; 06-26-2016 at 07:12 AM.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-27-2016, 04:07 AM Thread Starter
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Edit: did another test today, the levels are the same . Anyone know what's going on?
My pH is at 6.8 i dont know if that matters
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-27-2016, 04:34 AM
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Buy a hardy fish and check again in a week. Also live plants are gonna love those nitrates.

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-27-2016, 05:07 AM
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What water conditioner are you using? I know prime will test positive (.25ppm) for ammonia I think its up to 24 hours after the dose. Also if using safe start (which I do use) I would would wait before doing water changes, two weeks. You did the right thing reseeding after the water change. Do you have fish or are you doing fishless cycle?
Edit: You used bottled water, did you use a conditioner?

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-27-2016, 05:37 PM Thread Starter
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@thedood yes I have fish, you helped me in my last thread! One Betta and 3 pygmy corydoras. I'm not using any water conditioners for the bottled water , I did initially use aquasafe when first starting up the tank, but that's when I used the matrix aquatics live biomedia that my LFS sold me, so I think I killed the bacteria since I used them at the same time, and which is why I switched to safestart. No conditioners have been added. I was going to use prime for ammonia, but the levels are very low in my tank . I tested the water again, nitrite 0 ammonia 0 , nitrates seem to be high, but the color is hard to match to the chart. What does this mean? Is my tank cycled that fast? Or is something wierd going on
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-27-2016, 09:39 PM
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Thats what SafeStart does. I wouldnt venture a yes or no but what I will do is suggest that you monitor your ammonia and nitrite. I wouldnt worry about the nitrates to much as your plants will take off and bring those down. I would keep an eye on it for the next two weeks, no water changes, top off with bottled water as needed. If you can increase plant mass that will help with nitrates. In two weeks start your scheduled water changes and you should be good. Safe start is a product I have had decent luck with.

One other thing to keep in mind. The small bottle of Safe Start is good for a 20g tank. I assume you used the whole bottle so you are starting out with twice the bacteria. You get that jump start so to speak.

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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-01-2016, 07:09 PM Thread Starter
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I used the small bottle initially and then I used the large one after the big water change. So I'm sure I used 10x more then recommended. However I'm now having another issue. My foreground plants, the staurogyne repens were grown emersed, for the first week however they were still growing like crazy and spreading runners. The leaves were turning brown which I'm assuming is just them adjusting to submersed growth, but just this last two days I've had a massive algae bloom. Green hair algae is trying it's hardest to take over my tank. It's growing on my plants and my driftwood/rocks and I clip off every little piece I see with algae on it but it won't stop . I immediately reduced the co2 to less than 1 bps and I put a glass top on my tank to help reduce the light. The transitioning staurogyne repens isn't growing hard enough to put compete the algae and the rest of the plants are anubias/ Java fern aka slow growers. I think I'm off to the store to stick a pothos in the top of my tank because I can't get a handle on it. Not to mention I just noticed that super green blanket algae stuff trying to eat me anubias naba petite!! I should've went a little less complicated with my first tank i think.
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