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What is everyone using for test kits?I see everyone posting all these test results for CA and MG and so on and so forth but cant seem to fins test kits for freshwater for all these parameters. I have saltwater kits for all this but not sure that would ne accurate
 

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I have an API water test kit which allows me to test my Amonia, Nitrate, Nitrite, and pH levels. You get 4 flat bottom, glass test tubes with a cap and the necessary additive liquids to test your water. You fill the test tube to the fill line with rank water, and follow the instructions in the included instruction pamphlet, for how many drops of which liquid in what order and how long to shake and then wait. You'll then compare the color of the water to a color gradient chart.

It's pretty good. My only issues it can be a little bit time consuming because they're not test strips. Also, when shaking the tubes, the lids tend to leak just a bit so I often times just wrap a hand towel or paper towel around the tube and press down on the lid with my thumb when shaking.

Other than that, it's a good and comprehensive test kit that will serve you well and long.

Oo, I almost forgot. Wash/rinse out the tubes as soon as you're done examining the water because one time I left them filled for some time (don't remember how long, but im sure over an hour) and one of the tubes stained a wee bit.

I dont really use the pH test portion since i have those paper pH test strips, but I'm considering buying an electronic handheld pH meter off of Amazon. It'll be a faster process and it'll give me a more accurate reading as opposed to comparing a glass tube of colored water to a color gradient and making a guesstimate. I really don't like vagueness.

Sent from my SM-A215U1 using Tapatalk
 

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Salifert has a test for Calcium. Once you know your calcium level you can figure out your Magnesium level without a test kit. I dont have the calculation off hand but you can find it. I use Salifert for nitrates, calcium, phosphate, KH, and potassium. Api for phosphate also. Hach for GH.
 

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I use the API kit for pH , ammonia , and I have the separate kit for gh/kh . I use Salifert for nitrate because of ease of use . I use Tetra strips for ammonia and the multi ones just for a quick check . I have checked the strips against the API , Salifert liquid test and they are equal to my eye at least . Also they will give you a heads up if something is out of whack .
 

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I am running an old 20 gallon Marineland Eclipse 2 aquarium. My wife bought this tank 13 years ago and insisted on a shallow layer of ornamental gravel. The sump for this tank is in the hood which caused it to leak until I figured out what to do about it. This is a difficult tank to manage, it is not very high tech or automated and it's the only tank I have space for.

Since my tank is so challenging and unimpressive I have made up for it in other ways. I am really keeping up with my maintenance. My fertilizing chemicals are lab grade. I can be really precise with my measuring using volumetric cylinders, syringes and a scale. I can formulate dosing solutions to deliver ball park doses per volume of water.

But the jewell in my crown is my LaMotte Smart 3 Colorimeter. My old Nitrate test was too low range and I didn't realize it. The colorimeter Nitrate test went up to 60 ppm NO3 but the colorimeter said "overrange". I diluted the sample and retested and found that I have been dumping too much KNO3 into my tank per EI. This colorimeter is basically unaffordable, but I thought I would get one before retirement when I will be on a budget and never able to afford it.

Now I'm testing while the testing is good to really figure this stuff out and to dial in the dosing.
 
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