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Questions about curing my live rock.


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I just got my 30lbs of uncured lalo rock from drsfosterandsmith yesterday. After opening the package and almost falling over from the smell, I rinsed it off in a bucket of saltwater and placed it in my 20g tank.


Right now my ammonia is off the scale, and it's still very smelly. I expect it to take a month or so to cycle, but I have some questions in the meantime and would appreciate any help.


1. My PH is only at 7.7. Will the PH raise over time?


2. I've read conflicting opinions on whether or not I should do water changes while the rock is curing. Are there any pros and cons to this?


3. Should I should remove the rock periodically and scrub it to get the black rotting organisms off?


4. Also, should I use any lights while the tank is cycling, or leave them off?


5. Should I keep running my Fluval canister filter with media to aid in the cycle? Right now it's also the only thing circulating the water, but I have 2 microjets on the way.


Thanks for your help!



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1. forget about ph. you are cycling. test only for ammonia/nitrite/nitrate. and even then there is no reason to test for any of those for at least two weeks. save money on tests. and test ammonia only at first. no need to worry about anything until its down. dont worry about ph until corals go in. it will distract you from the cycle and temp you to chase the 'perfect' parameters. that is impossible during the cycle.


i have NEVER tested ph on my tanks. EVER!


2. i water change. this is to keep ammonia down below lethal levels. but it will extend your cycle. water changes will also cut down on the smell.


3. when i do water changes i syphon the water out into a bucket and hold (one rock at a time) a rock under the hose, washing it off. this removes all the loose stuff. the water ends up BLACK, reinforcing my decision to do water changes. this also helps on smell. i dont necesarrilly do every rock each water change.


4.lights allow you to see it. but just minimum light. i cycle outside and make sure at least some sun hits the rock.


5. i also use a cannister when cycleing rock. it allows removal of the crap that come off. this also helps the smell. make sure to clean the cannister every week, it gets nasty in there. its the only time i use a cannister.


6. i also use one large powerhead. this is to move the crap around where the cannister can get at it. just remember though, the powerhead will get clogged REALLY easy with all the crap in the tank. make sure to clean it frequently.




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I also have 30 lbs Lalo from dr foster and smith. Mine has been cycling for a week. I finally have an ammonia reading that is not off the charts, but I think it is because I added my ac500 on the back with fresh saltwater in it. The only thing I have in the ac500 is live rock rubble and I put in the sponge to trap all the gunk. The sponge has pretty much had it already! It is full of yuck. I plan to remove the sponge soon and add live sand and macro to the ac500.

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