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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-01-2013, 11:10 PM Thread Starter
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Starting ADA question

Hi,

I just came home with a 55 gallon tank and a whole set of ADA substrate.

I also bought some driftwood and rocks at the store. The guy at the store said that the driftwood and the stones should be soaked in water for at least 4 days, preferably a week. However, I would like to start the cycling process immediately.

I'm wondering if it would be wise to start the process without the driftwood/stones, then put them in later. There is nothing really so huge that I need to put them in first, but when I do put them in there will be a whole lot of moving the substrate around.

So, am I asking for trouble in terms of cloudy water if I put the rocks/driftwood in a week into the process?

I guess I could take out most of the water before putting in the rocks and wood.... I'm just not sure.

What do you all think? Thanks.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-01-2013, 11:16 PM
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There's no reason you can't put your hardscape together in the tank before filling it up with water. Most people put everything together before planting and then fill the tank.

Since you'll have to cycle the tank for at least a month with Aquasoil, the stone and wood would be 'soaking' in the tank during that process.


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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-02-2013, 12:44 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by somewhatshocked View Post
There's no reason you can't put your hardscape together in the tank before filling it up with water. Most people put everything together before planting and then fill the tank.

Since you'll have to cycle the tank for at least a month with Aquasoil, the stone and wood would be 'soaking' in the tank during that process.
I suspect that the difference is that he said I shouldn't do any water changes during the cycling. He is an official distributor of ADA here in Japan, has been to study with Amano, and seems to know his stuff (not that I know enough to be a good judge), but maybe his way is not the only way.

I'd rather put everything together now and do water changes along the way, I guess.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-02-2013, 12:56 AM
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I rarely do the recommended daily and then weekly water changes with Aquasoil when I'm starting a new tank. I just make sure ammonia never rises above 4PPM. When it does, then I do a partial water change to lower levels. Works really well.


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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-02-2013, 01:33 AM
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ADA actually recommends daily water changes initially, to get rid of the excess ammonia. I didn't do that with mine, I just did twice weekly changes for a couple of weeks, then weekly changes. I did add some plants right at the start to use up some of the ammonia. You don't need to follow a rigid schedule to cycle any tank. Cycling will occur whether you consciously "cycle" the tank or not. Just monitor the ammonia level, and the nitrite level for a month or so, to be sure the ammonia and nitrite disappear before you start adding fish.

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-02-2013, 04:45 AM
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i would soak the drift wood and once it sinks add the substrate and wood. if you dont soak the wood first its probably going to float and you will have to mess with the substrate to get it back in. or if your you could just float the drift wood in the tank till it sinks and then arrange it how you want
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-02-2013, 10:17 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks everybody for their advice. I have gone ahead and filled the tank with the rocks and driftwood, which promptly floated to the top despite the hours it took me to place properly.

The advice of the fish store guy was to fill the tank, wait an hour, then drain. Fill again, wait, and drain. Repeat a few times until the water clears. Only then put in the dechlorinator/bacteria seeding solution. Then no more water changes for two weeks.

I'll probably follow advice here and do more water changes every couple days.

During that period, do I need to put more dechlorinator in after every water change? During the water changes, should I turn off the filters?

Thanks!

Last edited by zachawry; 06-02-2013 at 11:51 AM. Reason: clarification
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-02-2013, 06:48 PM
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You need to still add dechlorinator to any makeup water to the tank. The chlorine/ chloramines will take out the beneficial bacteria (bb) that you have started to grow in the tank. Prime is only 5ml per 60gal.

If you are doing massive water changes, I would shut off the filters just to prevent the outflow from moving the substrate around when it splashes to the bottom. 75% wc is going to expose the inlet strainer anyway.

No bb is in the water column so change however much you need to keep the ammonia at a decent level, too high and the nitrate cycle crawls to a stop. Just keep some in there to feed the bacteria (no full tank water changes).

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