Question about my nitrate test. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-23-2014, 12:54 AM Thread Starter
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Question about my nitrate test.

So I'm doing a fishless cycle on a new 30 gallon tank its been running since 6/7/2014. My bacteria is mowing through 15ml of pure ammonia a day, my nitrites are dropping rapidly. What is weird to me when I do the first half of the nitrate test, bottle #1 the color turns to this (see pic below, test on the right is very dark, test on the left is a cycled 20gallon as a reference). What is causing solution #1 to be that dark? Pic #2 is of both completed test, solution on the right is now lighter... I did a tetra dip test on my new tank its saying my nitrates are over 40ppm.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 03:12 PM
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Did you follow the instructions for the test kit to the dot?

There are some time restrictions (i.e. tests must be read after 5 minutes) that should be followed.

In addition, both reagent bottles must be shaken very vigorously prior to use, or else you will have inaccurate results.

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 07:15 PM
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Did you accidentally put the tubes on the wrong sides for the picture?

The top pic:
the left looks like test bottle 1, the right looks like it's complete.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 08:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Solcielo lawrencia View Post
Did you accidentally put the tubes on the wrong sides for the picture?

The top pic:
the left looks like test bottle 1, the right looks like it's complete.
that's what I thought.

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 10:12 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkblade48 View Post
Did you follow the instructions for the test kit to the dot?

There are some time restrictions (i.e. tests must be read after 5 minutes) that should be followed.

In addition, both reagent bottles must be shaken very vigorously prior to use, or else you will have inaccurate results.
Yes I follow the directions to a T. I've do it 100's of times over the years. I shake the hell out of the bottle #2 till my arms hurt! By the way the directions don't say to shake bottle#1 prior to adding it to the water sample, although I usually give it a quick shake.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Solcielo lawrencia View Post
Did you accidentally put the tubes on the wrong sides for the picture?

The top pic:
the left looks like test bottle 1, the right looks like it's complete.
No I didn't switch them. The tube on the right in the top picture is that color after solution #1 is added, the bottom pic is after the test is complete. I've never seen a test sample that dark after bottle #1. Which makes me believe there is something in my aquarium causing that color. Here's new pics of a test I did 5 mins ago to avoid confusion, the top pic is after I add 10 drops from bottle #1, the bottom pic is after I add 10 drops from bottle #2 and shake vigorously for 60 seconds then wait 5 mins. Again it goes from dark to light! WTH
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 10:59 PM
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Do your test bottles have an expiration date...?
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 11:11 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Thumper828 View Post
Do your test bottles have an expiration date...?
Yes they do its march 2017. I bought this test within the last 2 months. I've also calibrated it with Hoppys calibration thread. When I test my other tanks the color is bright yellow as it should be. Its just this one tank that does this. Not sure why??


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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 01:34 AM
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Well, a tank going through the fishless cycle will have ammonia and nitrite, which the other tanks (well cycled, I am assuming) do not.
I have heard that the nitrate test may not be accurate if nitrite is present, so maybe just wait until the ammonia and nitrite read zero before bothering with the NO3 test.
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