Rescaped, ammonia 0.25? Mini-cycle? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-26-2012, 10:31 PM Thread Starter
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Unhappy Rescaped, ammonia 0.25? Mini-cycle?

So I just rescaped my 55gal completely (like 100%), and quarantined my fish. The tap water in my area comes with 0.25ppm of ammonia, but since my fish are seperated, I figured I'd use the tap to refill the tank. Normally, I'd use RO water for water changes.

I finished up the scaping last night, checked this morning and my ammonia is still 0.25- hasn't changed a bit. This tank is a seaclear system II and has been established for over a year all fine and heavily planted. The rescape has only taiwan moss and amazon swords for now, and I just added in my wysteria and cabomba to float and help with the ammonia.

Am I going to have to go through a mini-cycle, and how long will this take?
Or rather, how quickly does ammonia become nitrites and then nitrates, in my situation? My fish are in a seperate container, but it's not like that container is cycled at all. I wasn't expecting this, since the last time I rescaped, everything went well and didn't get any mini-cycles.
I suppose it's because this time, I didn't keep any of the previous ornaments (rocks and stuff).
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-26-2012, 10:37 PM
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With a sea clear system II, I assume you have the built in sump. If you didnt let your bacteria dry out then things should be fine.

You can raise temps to like 80 to speed up the metabolism of the bacteria, converting the ammonia and nitrite faster.


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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-26-2012, 10:47 PM Thread Starter
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Hmm... I thought that might've been the case. My tank has no water for a good 2 hours. Is that enough time to dry out all the bacteria?
The tank temp is 78, so that should be alright.

In the case that the bacteria dried out, does that mean I have to cycle all over again? Good lord. O_O
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-26-2012, 10:51 PM
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I'd kill for .25. Our water is 2 PPM normally and higher on the weekend. That in mind, maybe it was higher because you did it on a weekend. Check again in a day, maybe?
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-26-2012, 10:56 PM
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It'll just take a longer time. There still should be water in the back if you have the built in sump. When I drained my 95G sea clear system II, I still had water full in the sump.


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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-26-2012, 11:04 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah, seaclear keeps water in there after emptying, but only to an extent- just a few inches. I hope it doesn't take over 2 days..

2ppm!? I feel for you. Our tap is a constant 0.25ppm, no matter the day.
Well, makes cycling a new tank easier, I suppose? #bright side
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-27-2012, 11:22 AM
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I use API Master Test Kit, and I very rarely, if at all, see below 0.25 ppm. I think it's because of the kit, not the water. If the ammonia goes up, you've got a problem, otherwise you're ok.

I would suggest planting all of your plants in the rescape now, as a failsafe measure.

0.25 ppm ammonia is not really much of a problem, I don't think, although you don't want any, but the plants will take care of it lickety split.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-27-2012, 11:49 AM
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If you reused substrate and fitler media you should be okay. It's just a mini cycle a day or two and it will clear up. Everytime I pull plants out of the 125g I see an ammonia spike over the next 24 hours. Think alot of that is the root tabs.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-27-2012, 07:38 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys, I'm reassured LOL. Though when I checked just now, it was still 0.25ppm. I really hope this doesn't last longer than today.
Django, when I test my RO water, ammonia comes up at 0ppm- I'm still hesitant to put my fish back in that 0.25ppm.

I did reuse all my substrate and filter media, and dropped in every floating plant I have...
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-28-2012, 01:51 AM
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Read the label on your dechlorinator. It ought to lock up ammonia. You might have to dose just a little more, it will say so on the label. Prime, for example says how much product will lock up how much ammonia.

From Seachem's web site, Prime page:
Quote:
Use 1 capful (5 mL) for each 200 L (50 gallons*) of new water. This removes approximately 1 mg/L ammonia, 4 mg/L chloramine, or 5 mg/L chlorine.
Note that mg/l is the same as ppm. Fully read all the directions, do not JUST dose per the portion I quoted.

Some test kits will still show ammonia, even when it is locked up. You might have to get the ammonia test that is manufactured by the same company as your dechlor to get some idea if there is still some free ammonia or if it is all locked up.

Yes, it could have come from disturbing things.
It sure could have come from chloramines in the water, or ammonia in the water.
2 hours is not too long for the bacteria to be exposed to the air, as long as it was still humid deep inside the media. The bacteria live just fine in damp locations, they like the extra oxygen in the air.
You might have lost some bacteria on the outermost parts of the media, where it got the driest, and you might have lost some in the substrate, or by removing some plants. The bacteria live on the surfaces of the leaves, and on the upper layer of substrate where it is closest to the water in the tank for oxygen and fresh supplies of ammonia.

If it goes on for more than a couple of days or you are worried about it you can go buy some more bacteria. Look for Nitrospira species of bacteria. These are the actual species that are part of the nitrogen cycle. Do not waste money on anything else.
Look up both the test kit and the dechlor you use and see what the story is.
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