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Old 08-05-2013, 03:50 PM   #1 
Lichen7192
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Switching filter media in uncycled tank

My 5g tank is a little more than 3 weeks into the fish in cycle (without testing kit). Some time ago I read about aquarium foam being used in the place of filter cartridges. If I were to do this, how would I switch from cartridge to sponge in terms of the beneficial bacteria? I have the Mini Might internal filter that came with the tank and I cannot fit both of them into the slot. Since I'm assuming my tank is not done cycling yet, should I wait to do this? And what would be the maintenance required for it (cleaning, replacing, etc.)?
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Old 08-05-2013, 04:19 PM   #2 
Hallyx
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I would wait until your tank is cycled. Then replace your cartridge with the foam (a good idea in any case) and place your seeded cartridge in, on or as close to your filter intake as possible. After a couple of weeks you can remove the cartridge.

How will you know if or when your tank is cycled without testing?
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Old 08-05-2013, 04:23 PM   #3 
Lichen7192
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Okay thanks, I'd bring some tank water in a cup to Petco and get it tested in about a week or so.
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Old 08-05-2013, 05:03 PM   #4 
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If cycling with your fish in the tank, I'd keep a lot closer eye on the water parameters. An API master test kit is available from Amazon for less than $20. You'll want to have one in the long run, especially when you're replacing the cartridge and transferring the bacteria, to guard against mini-cycles and for general tank security.

Also....my Petco uses paper strips to read ammonia/nitrite/pH. A liquid test (like API) is much more accurate.

I like that wild Betta in your avatar. Do you have a better picture? I have one like that.

Last edited by Hallyx; 08-05-2013 at 05:05 PM.
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