API Quick Start Freshwater & Saltwater Aquarium Nitrifying Bacteria, 32-oz bottle

By API
Rated 5 out of 5 stars
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$30.99Chewy Price
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About This Item

  • All-natural solution that allows for the immediate addition of fish to a new tank.
  • Starts the natural aquarium cycle with beneficial bacteria to remove harmful compounds.
  • Converts toxic ammonia into harmless nitrate.
  • Helps prevent the loss of fish in both freshwater and saltwater aquariums.
  • Ideal for starting a new aquarium, adding new fish and changing water or filter.
Play Video: Learn More About API From Our Team of Experts
Learn More About API From Our Team of Experts


About API Water Conditioners

It’s Smart To Be Proactive!

The best way to keep your aquarium clean is to maintain good water quality. This will help keep your fish strong and vibrant and prevent disease. Water conditioners and test kits from API can help you keep your aquarium water safe and healthy.

How Do I Maintain a Healthy Environment?

It is important to test your aquarium water weekly to ensure it stays healthy for your fish.  In addition, a bi-weekly partial water change of no more than 25% will help reduce toxic buildup, remove debris the filter missed, and replenish the oxygen available to your fish.

Feed Twice Daily and Test Water Weekly

Feed your fish twice a day, check their water temperature, and observe them to make sure they are active. You should also test water quality weekly for optimal safety. For fish to thrive, their water must closely match that of their natural environment—poor water quality can cause stress, illness and even fish loss. The 6 important parameters for healthy aquarium water are ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH and water hardness (GH & KH). All of these can vary over time and are invisible to the eye.

Change Water and Restore the Ecosystem

In a closed aquarium environment, there are no natural rivers or streams to carry away debris and other waste materials. That is why you should replace 25% of your aquarium water every two weeks, making sure to add water conditioner to your tap water to make it safe for your fish. You should also change your filter media and clean your gravel monthly. Adding beneficial nitrifying bacteria with API Quick Start when you do will help restore your aquarium’s fragile ecosystem and avoid disruption.

What Do API Products Do and When Do I Use Them?

API Test Kits

Use test kits weekly to monitor water quality parameters, which can vary over time and impact the health of your fish.

API Stress Zyme

Using this every week will help keep your aquarium clean and your gravel and ornaments sludge-free.

API Algaefix

Use weekly to control algae growth and keep aquarium glass, ornaments and plants clean.

API Stress Coat

Use every 2 weeks during water changes to make tap water safe, and when adding fish, or when fish are injured.

About API

The team at API has a passion for fish and understands the rewards and relaxation fishkeeping can bring. For almost 60 years, they have developed premium products with a focus on proven and effective results. API offers a range of testing kits, water conditioners and nutritionally superior fish foods. They are dedicated to making a better underwater world for the benefit of fish and those who keep them.

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Fish TypeTropical Freshwater, Betta, Goldfish...Koi & Pond Fish, GoldfishTropical Freshwater, Betta, Cichlid...Tropical Freshwater, Marine Fish, Betta...Koi & Pond Fish
Aquarium TypePondPondFreshwater, SaltwaterFreshwater, SaltwaterPond

Questions & Answers

3 Customer Questions


Will this reduce the smell in a turtle tank and is it safe to use exclusively with turtles ?
Answer by ChewyMar 18, 2020
The Quick Start is appropriate for every aquarium containing water, including those containing turtles. The Quick Start will help to process ammonia waste from fish or turtles, which will cut down on any ammonia-type smell from the turtle. If there are additional smells or additional sludge in the aquarium, API recommend to use the Turtle Sludge Destroyer as well. This will break down smells that are associated with extra organics and sludge within the aquarium.

Should I be using this API Quick Start or the API Tap Water Conditioner? What are the differences?
Answer by ChewySep 07, 2021
Both should be used. The API Tap Water Conditioner is needed to first dechlorinate the water and to neutralize any heavy metals that could be within the water that could harm your fish. After the water is dechlorinated and added to the aquarium, then the Quick Start is added to the aquarium. The Quick Start contains live nitrifying bacteria that are needed in order to make sure that the ammonia fish waste is properly converted to less toxic compounds. As the aquarium gets established with this nitrifying bacteria, things become more stable. However, any action that could disturb the bacteria (such as large water exchanges, tank maintenance, or exchanging or cleaning filter material) should be followed up with a dose of the Quick Start to make sure things stay stable and safe for the fish.

how many gallons will the 32oz bottle treat
Answer by ChewyApr 10, 2020
A 32 ounce bottle will treat approximately 940 gallons. Add 10 milliliters for every 10 gallons. For saltwater tanks, it is recommended to double the dose.

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2 Customer Reviews



Rated 5 out of 5 stars
By MemyselfandI on Jun 20, 2022

Can't do without!

API and other products at Chewy are less expensive than other stores. That's why i choose Chewy for my freshwater fish supplies and for my my dog food and dog toys.


Rated 5 out of 5 stars
By Sweez on Feb 12, 2022

Healthy fishies

I ran out for awhile. Noticed a major difference with my fish, plants, and water quality. Just ordered 64 oz. I don’t ever want to run out of it again.