The Planted Tank Forum - View Single Post - Your test kit brand experience
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 07-21-2019, 05:50 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Greggz View Post
A while back I did a kitchen table test between API and Salifert.

With the NO3 test, Salifert was clearly more accurate. The API was pretty far off, surprisingly far off to me. Could it be related to "shaking"? Yeah, maybe but I have always really shaken it like mad. My guess is once it gets off, it will stay off. The Salifert is very consistent.

The API PO4 test was reasonably accurate. The Salifert PO4 only goes up to 3 ppm, which is pretty useless in my tank. At 3ppm my tank would be starving, so would never really be an option for me.

Here's a link to my entirely unscientific tests.......................

So for me, I use API for PO4 and Salifert for NO3. The absolute value is not that important, but relative values are. Basically looking to spot trends or anything wonky.

But more important than either are your actual dosing and the reaction of plants. I don't make decisions based on what I "want" the numbers to be, rather numbers that bring out the best in my mix of plants in my unique ecosystem.

For me, I try to keep NO3 = 30+ and PO4 = 5+. Any lower and hungry plants like Pantanal and other Ludwigia start to rebel. But as usual, your mileage may vary. You need to find out what levels bring out the best in your particular set up.
Darnit I really need to spend some time and read through your entire journal, that is super interesting stuff.

30ppm nitrate? 5ppm phosphate??? Wowowowow!! Some would call you crazy!

Originally Posted by Edward View Post
Need to make calibration solutions and learn how to interpret the colour. This can be done once per brand and then any liquid test kit brand will be suitable.

0 ppm => low
10 ppm => good
20 ppm => high

0 ppm => low
1 ppm => good
2 ppm => high

0 ppm => low
20 ppm => good
40 ppm => high

Hey, can you elaborate please? The way your post is right now isn't helpful.

Last edited by Darkblade48; 07-22-2019 at 01:00 AM. Reason: Please use the edit function for back to back posts to keep threads cleaner
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