Do I need a water hardness kit and does the API one work? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-05-2012, 05:32 AM Thread Starter
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Do I need a water hardness kit and does the API one work?

It looks like this set is the most common

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...=ATVPDKIKX0DER

but I see some reviews saying the GH test doesn't actually work. Is this true? Also, is it important to test water hardness? Should I do it regularly?

And while I'm here...my water's PH is about 8.3. Should I switch to a bottled water with a lower PH?

Thanks
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-05-2012, 06:08 AM
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GH is good to know, but you don't really need to test it on a regular basis.

The GH test kit works fine, but can be finicky, especially if the reagent is older.

Some people also find the colour changes (it is a titration test kit) a bit hard to discern.

I wouldn't worry too much about pH. A stable pH is more important than anything. If you are looking for a lower pH for a particular reason (i.e. such as breeding or keeping wild caught fish), then rather than using bottled water (which would become very expensive), RO or DI water would be a cheaper alternative.

Anthony

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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-05-2012, 06:21 AM
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I do not have a problem with API hardness test kit. Hardness is important to establish your tap water & conditions for the type of fish & plants you want to keep. I have found that the API color changes are easy to read & I use them all the time. I mix R/O water & you must know what your Gh is as well as Kh especially for keeping regular constant conditions . If you know what your tap water is running & it does not change much it becomes less important. However if you need say more Mg or Ca to dose than it will alter the Gh. So it is still nice to know what the Gh is at any time you want. If you decide to mix r/o water for what ever reason than you will need one.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-05-2012, 08:15 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks! Are there any other test kits that I need that don't come with the API freshwater master kit?
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-05-2012, 08:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wayne Dwops View Post
Thanks! Are there any other test kits that I need that don't come with the API freshwater master kit?
You could consider a phosphate test kit.

Anthony

A Primer to Pressurized CO2 and A Primer to Planted Tanks
Eheim Pimp #362 - Eheim 2213 x2, Eheim 2028, Eheim 2217, Eheim surface skimmer and Eheim autofeeder.
Victor Pimp #33 - HPT272-125-350-4M
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