Just got my KH/GH Test Kit in... - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 05-12-2014, 03:53 AM Thread Starter
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DefStatic's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Maine
Posts: 588
Just got my KH/GH Test Kit in...

So I am using all API Liquid Tests. Wow, the GH and KH is a pain. SO my first question, is there a relatively in-expensive alternative that is more accurate for all these tests?

I haev had the Freshwater Master kit for a while, but including them in my results. JUst looking for thoughts from everyone.

KH: 35.8 ppm
GH: 17.9 ppm
PH: 7
Amm: .25 ppm
NitrIte: 0
NitrAte: 0

1st 3 Gallon:
KH: 35.8 ppm
GH: 35.8 ppm
PH: 7
Amm: .25 ppm
NitrIte: 0
NitrAte: 10 ppm

2nd 3 Gallon:
KH: 35.8 ppm
GH: 53.7 ppm
PH: 7
Amm: .25 ppm
NitrIte: 0
NitrAte: 10 ppm

10 Gallon (still cycling):
KH: 71.6 ppm
GH: 107.4 ppm
PH: 7.4
Amm: 0
NitrIte: Off the Charts
NitrAte: Off the Charts

30 Gallon (EI Low Tech Dosing):
KH: 71.6 ppm
GH: 53.7 ppm
PH: 7.4
Amm: 0
NitrIte: 0
NitrAte: 20 ppm

Is there anything I should be worried about? I got the KH/GH Test Kit because I just wanted to be able to monitor things closer and get an idea of what is going on. I am told there are other things you can calculate based on these tests.

Do the numbers make sense?
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 05-12-2014, 11:08 PM
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PlantedRich's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Huntington Beach, CA, USA
Posts: 9,095
I have very mixed feelings about the liquid test kits. When done right, they can be more accurate. But when not done wrong, they can be totally screwed up. When we are new to testing is when we are more likely to mess up the liquid tests. Just about a dozen ways that I can think of off the top? Age of the kit items, where they are stored, how we hold the bottle, how we shake the bottle? Too much to cover here!
My suggestion for thought is to try a simple test strip as a way to get in the ballpark. Then to really find out if you are able to see the colors correctly and to get an idea of what "right" will look like, you will need to do what is called "calibrate" the test kit. Really doesn't calibrate anything but lets you see what a known level should look like.
My personal feeling is that many of us will not do a good job of testing with liquids until we get more into it.
That leaves me feeling that a test with strips done correctly will get us a closer answer than a more accurate kit done wrong. Or not done at all because it is a PITA.
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