The Planted Tank Forum banner
1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all! Been fishkeeping for around 2 years and only recently started using a buffer because I've struggled with very low alkalinity. Thing is, my API reading KEEPS giving me a different number. By this I mean, today alone I have tested in succession upwards of 5 times and my kH reading has ranged from 3 all the way to 10! WTF is happening here? Did I get a dud kH API test? Any thoughts? Been struggling similarly (though not as severely at ALL) with gH.
Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,940 Posts
Curious what is the struggle with low pH? In general people with planted tanks want low dKH/pH, as plants love it.

As to the test, sounds unusual. I'd clean a couple of test tubes and let them dry then try again. That test is usually pretty consistent.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
628 Posts
@waterpuppies Is there an expiration date on that test? The reagents might be blown. I've had all sorts of old test laying around the place. My old Nitrate test was completely off. Sometimes the Alkalinity test takes more than one drop of the sulphuric acid to change the color completely. Going from 3 to 10 is definitely a WTF result. I've been testing for Alkalinty lately too. I'm trying to culture some bacteria because I think my filter stopped after not having a fish for a long time. Supposedly, the higher Alkalinity makes the bacteria grow faster. I'm cycling ceramic filter media in a separate bucket.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,529 Posts
I'd consider and try a couple things:

  • I recently bought a new API GH/KH kit. The GH turned the water purple (not the normal orange) and then blue (not the normal green) when the GH was reached. Additionally, the GH read a point higher than it should have (based upon my own estimates and confirmed by both a Sera and Salifert kit. Then, the KH part of the kit read a KH of .6, while my Hanna kit (and my own computations) showed it in the 1.4 area. These are bad batches. Apparently, API is presently struggling with either bad batches or poor quality control - maybe both.
  • Check the expiration date.
  • Try increasing the precision: use a 25ml sample, count the drops to yellow and divide by 5. See if you can get the same results multiple times.
  • Make sure that the bottle is pointing straight down when dripping and make sure you are getting full drops and not drops that are mostly a bubble.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
628 Posts
I'd consider and try a couple things:

  • I recently bought a new API GH/KH kit. The GH turned the water purple (not the normal orange) and then blue (not the normal green) when the GH was reached. Additionally, the GH read a point higher than it should have (based upon my own estimates and confirmed by both a Sera and Salifert kit. Then, the KH part of the kit read a KH of .6, while my Hanna kit (and my own computations) showed it in the 1.4 area. These are bad batches. Apparently, API is presently struggling with either bad batches or poor quality control - maybe both.
  • Check the expiration date.
  • Try increasing the precision: use a 25ml sample, count the drops to yellow and divide by 5. See if you can get the same results multiple times.
  • Make sure that the bottle is pointing straight down when dripping and make sure you are getting full drops and not drops that are mostly a bubble.
I recently compounded some Ammonium Chloride dosing solution to grow my bacteria. My brand new API Ammonia test kit is not reading the expected amount of Ammonia. I had to put in three times the amount of dosing solution to get to 2 ppm [NH3-N]. It could be that my compounding is off. I do have a very good scale and a volumetric cylinder. But my math might be wrong. I have another Ammonia test that is more accurate. I could run the other test to check the API test.
 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top