Skip to Content

Can You Overdose API Quick Start When Cycling A Tank?

With many of the beginners to fish keeping starting to realize just how important it is to regularly change the water in your aquarium, we have noticed a spike in the questions that we see about running regular water changes on fish tanks.

We have already covered a number of these over the last couple of months but today we want to take a look at if you can overdose API Quick Start during a tank cycle.

You can overdose API Quick Start when using it during a water change for your aquarium so it is important to follow the extremely easy to understand dosing instructions on the label of the product rather than just free pouring your API Quick Start into your water.

Just like all other API treatments, the cap of the bottle serves as your dosing tool and you usually use 10ml of Quick Start per 10 US Gallons of water.

This is why we highly recommend API Quick Start to so many of our readers who are within the fish keeping hobby as it is an excellent tool that you are able to take advantage of for your own tanks.

Please note that you should always check the label of your own bottle in case the formula changes in the future requiring you to apply slightly different dosages of the treatment to prevent overdosing.

Can You Overdose API Quick Start When Cycling A Tank?

User error is a very common cause of overdosing API Quick Start in an aquarium as some people think that the more of the treatment they use, the better it will perform but this is not true at all.

You should always use the easy to follow instructions on the side of your bottle label when working out the correct dosage for your aquarium size and stick to the recommended dosage.

When used correctly, API Quick Start can be an excellent way to limit the potentially toxic ammonia and nitrate levels in your aquarium while also being a very budget friendly product compared to the competing products on the market.

The easy to follow instructions make it very easy to avoid accidentally overdosing the treatment in your aquarium too and this coupled with the fact that the product works very well is why it has such an excellent reputation within the fish keeping community.

Some of our readers don’t like it when we are blunt in our articles but if you are overdosing your tank with API Quick Start then it is definitely user error with people who have had problems with the product often admitting they failed to read the label and just free poured the treatment into their water.

We know that there are some YouTube fish keeping channels who will free pour various treatments into their tanks often giving beginners the impression that they can do the same but this is a wreckless practice and should never be done as it can easily allow you to add far too much treatment to your aquarium.

How Often Can I Add API Quick Start?

The majority of aquarium setups will be able to use API Quick Start with each water change provided they keep up with their regular tank maintenance to keep their water parameters in line and correctly follow the dosing instructions on the product.

Some people use API Quick Start once per week in tanks that require a weekly water change without issue.

If you do notice that your tank is consistently having problems with its ammonia and nitrite levels spiking up then getting a cheap gravel vacuum to remove the poop laying on the substrate once per week can help.

We would usually not recommend that you counter spiking ammonia and nitrite levels by increasing the frequency of your water changes to more than once per week though and even then, this should usually be partial water changes rather than a full change for most tanks.

If you do stay on top of your water parameters with regular tank maintenance then you can usually extend the time periods between water changes in some tank setups too.

This reduces the frequency that you need to use API Quick Start in your tank and helps to reduce the chances of accidentally adding too much of the product to your aquarium’s water and potentially having problems.

How Long Does It Take To Cycle A Tank With API Quick Start?

Depending on the size of your aquarium, you can usually expect to fully cycle it within two weeks when using API Quick Start at the correct dosages.

Please note that increasing the dosages of API Quick Start in your water when cycling your tank WILL NOT reduce this time period and can potentially cause a number of issues with your water so always stick to the recommended dose.

There are a number of ways that you can cycle your tank without using API Quick Start or even an alternative product in a similar time frame too.

If you are a beginner though, sticking to a chemical treatment like API Quick Start to assist you with your water changes is a good bet and can help you cycle your tank water much quicker than the natural methods.

If you are a more experienced fish keeper with a couple of years of fish keeping under your belt and have cycled your tank multiple times and gone through countless water changes then you are usually able to go with any method you want.

Most experts still choose to use a chemical treatment when cycling their tanks though due to how easy and fast it can be with API Quick Start definitely being one of the better options on the market right now.


That brings our article going over if you can overdose API Quick Start in your aquarium or not to an end. Although it is possible to overdose your aquarium with API Quick Start, it is difficult to do due to the cap of the bottle being the perfect dosing tool and the instructions on the side of the bottle being so quick and easy to ready.