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Old 08-13-2012, 04:55 AM   #1 
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Changed filter--did I reset my cycle?

My cycle's been going well. My ammonia has always been safe.

Now it's reading at .5 (danger) a day and a half after the change.

During this change I pulled out the carbon filter. It was very gross, full of grey fluff, stringy, etc. All I thought think was, "ew, ew," and changed the filter.

I took the sponge and cleaned it in the tank water. Then I replaced it.

It is possible I've restarted my cycle? Are my fish at risk? It took months to get it where it was. But then again, I can't keep the same carbon filter in there forever.

Also, is the carbon poisonous to my fish if they touch it?
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Old 08-13-2012, 06:51 AM   #2 
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Join Date: Jun 2011
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The carbon is there to remove chemicals and certain waste products. It is of no benefit to a Betta setup.

It was, however a repository for the nitrifying bacteria that maintain the cycle. You removed a lot of that bacteria and now your filter is trying to renew the cycle.

It's called a mini-cycle and the best way to get through it is to test your water daily and change as much as you need as often as required to keep your ammonia and nitrite well below 0.25ppm.

Double up your conditioner if it has ammonia remover like Prime does. Replace the carbon with filter foam to increase area for the bacteria colony.
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