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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-18-2014, 03:33 PM Thread Starter
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API test kit readings question

I have the API Master test kit which I have had for over a couple years. It still shows its good until 2015. I am wondering if maybe it has expired prematurely. The ammonia test gives consistent readings, however it is telling me that my Amm is sky high between 3-4 ppm. I have conducted 3x 75% water changes over the course of a week which got it down to 1-2ppm. However now its back up. Heres the thing there are no fish in here! The last one died of old age recently. It was quickly removed.

Is there a test solution I can make from the store bought Amm I bought years ago to fishless cycle the tank, to make sure my test kit is still accurate?

I know when I test tap water its zero.

One thing that could have happened is when I first discovered I had sky high ammonia I dosed a very small bottle of stability that was opened and had been sitting on a shelf but not expired. When that did not work I bought a bottle of tetra safe start. I then learned that if you dose these products when the Amm is already 3-4ppm it is deadly to the beneficial bacteria as well and that dechlor products will render it innefective. So I did one more 75% water change to get it back down to 1-2 range. Then waited 24 hrs and dosed one more small bottle of tetra safe start. After 24 hrs its sky high again. I am so confused by this that I almost think the test kit might just be way off.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-18-2014, 04:12 PM
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It kinda sounds like your tank is re cycling if your getting a zero reading from the tap water bit a reading from tank water the test is working take a little of your water to local fish store have them test it
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-18-2014, 07:23 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Midnighttide102 View Post
It kinda sounds like your tank is re cycling if your getting a zero reading from the tap water bit a reading from tank water the test is working take a little of your water to local fish store have them test it
I would agree accept there are no fish producing amm in the tank.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-18-2014, 07:45 PM
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Ammonia is present in the tank even if no fish at times alot of dif things can produce ammonia even plants, chemicals you've added to tank? I'd give it a little time and see what happens
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-18-2014, 07:45 PM
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Is there a test solution I can make from the store bought Amm I bought years ago to fishless cycle the tank, to make sure my test kit is still accurate?
I'm not sure what the strength of your stock ammonia is.
To get a degree of accuracy - make serial dilutions.

Assuming the concentrated ammonia is 10%.

Make a 1/1000 dilution by adding 1mL of this to 1L of water (this solution will be 100ppm ammonia.)

Then make a 1/100 dilution of this by adding 10mL of the 1/1000 solution to another 1L of water to end up with a 1ppm test solution.

If you want other values, scale up or down the 10mL in the second step to get whatever conc you want.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-18-2014, 08:04 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by lee739 View Post
I'm not sure what the strength of your stock ammonia is.
To get a degree of accuracy - make serial dilutions.

Assuming the concentrated ammonia is 10%.

Make a 1/1000 dilution by adding 1mL of this to 1L of water (this solution will be 100ppm ammonia.)

Then make a 1/100 dilution of this by adding 10mL of the 1/1000 solution to another 1L of water to end up with a 1ppm test solution.

If you want other values, scale up or down the 10mL in the second step to get whatever conc you want.
Yes sir, 10%. Thank-you so much for this!
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