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I have been cycling since the 3rd or 4th of Nov. I used ammonia to start and on the 10th we added fish, even though we weren't cycled yet. I stumbled upon a website that stated not to use ammonia with surfactants. We used about 1 to 1-1/2 cups of that ammonia. It suds up pretty BADD when it's shaken a lot.
My Levels today are:
PH: 8.0
Ammonia: 0.0- 0.25 (had peaked at 4.0 ppm)
Nitrite: 5.0+
Nitrate: 40
In the last week I have put in 2 small bottles of "Microbe lift, nightout" we have been battling to keep water above 68•.
Do I need to empty everything and start cycling over.??
Thank you all in advance for your help.

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Looks like you're there!!!! Guess there are no shortcuts. I added a GB to my system. I'm hoping the mature system will speed up the cycling.

JeffS I guess there aren't any, it went faster this second time just like Vlad had said. 3 weeks this second time isn't bad at all. I have noticed in the last week that all the plants have really taken off and sprouted a lot. I am going to continue with the ammonia for now until the water warms up. I will probably dump the water from my aquarium into my fish tank every time I clean it out, just to mimic as though there are fish in it.

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