Okay so the other day I bought a 20g tall (was advertised as a 15g) well it was used for 10+ years so I rinsed it 20-30 times with HOT water. Filled it, conditioned the water and started the filter that it came with. The day after I bought 3 guppy (a trio to feed the fry to my betta as treats) and a cory? (not sure, the girl at petsmart picked him out for me.). I will be adding 5-6 female betta for a sorority into the tank this coming week. (going to have them in cups floating for a week or two).
Yesterday I noticed the water was dingy looking... strange as it's newly set up, and rinsed. So I checked the filter, no cartridges! My gosh.
So I went out to purchase some new ones, got to the store and realized I forgot to check what kind it was!
Tried calling my husband, of course he didn't pick up the 20 something times I called. Poor guy was exhausted! He had staff duty (24 hours of answering calls, checking barracks, assisting the soldiers, etc.) Well I didn't want to go home and have a cartridge-less filter going, so I bought a new Tetra 10-30g filter. When I got home I did a 25% water change and started the new filter. The water is clear, and looks great so I check water perimeters in all of my set ups. The vases for the males (1.5g each) are at 0 ammonia, 6.6 Ph, 0 Nitrite, 0 Nitrate. I used gerber purified baby water so I would hope that the perimeters would be top notch. Lol. Well the tank is 0 ammonia, 7.2 Ph, 0 Nitrite, and 5 for Nitrate!
How should I go about making the tank perimeters more ideal? I would think that since it was a previously used tank and equipment that cycling wouldn't be needed. Everything is in order but the nitrate levels, so should I do another water change or is this just a fluctuation and should regulate?