I need help accurately reading API test kit - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
 
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post #1 of 9 Old 03-20-2009, 05:37 PM Thread Starter
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I need help accurately reading API test kit

I've been cycling my tank for 4 weeks now and in 12 hours the bacteria are processing ~3.5ppm of NH3. I did a nitrite test for my tank using an Aquarium Pharmaceuticals test kit. When I was comparing the solution color to the chart in a well lit area I noticed that if I place the tube directly against the chart card the solution color is darker than if I allow space between the card and tube. This made the nitrite concentration reading be 2 ppm<n<5 ppm if the card was directly against the card and n=0.50 ppm if there was space between the card and tube. That's a big difference.

Should I be reading the tube away from the card or right against the card?
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post #2 of 9 Old 03-20-2009, 05:51 PM
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hello and welcome :)
not sure how everyone else does it,but i hold the tube to the card standing with the back door behind me with the natural light comming in.

when you set up a new tank,hide an extra
sponge or two behind some decor,that way you have
something seeded for you next filter.
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post #3 of 9 Old 03-20-2009, 06:43 PM
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thats how I do it too willow. I let the natural sunlight hit it
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post #4 of 9 Old 03-20-2009, 07:41 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willow View Post
hello and welcome :)
not sure how everyone else does it,but i hold the tube to the card standing with the back door behind me with the natural light comming in.
So to clarify, you put the tube right against the card?
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post #5 of 9 Old 03-20-2009, 08:46 PM
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Yes, that's the way I've always done it. And like the others said, have the light coming from behind you

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post #6 of 9 Old 03-21-2009, 04:55 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah, I always have the light coming from behind. I don't have good access to natural sunlight from my dorm or bathroom so I just use the bathroom light which is sufficient.
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post #7 of 9 Old 03-21-2009, 05:01 AM
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you should be fine. :)
if i think the levels even look a little not right,i would do a water change.
seems to be working that way for me.

when you set up a new tank,hide an extra
sponge or two behind some decor,that way you have
something seeded for you next filter.
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post #8 of 9 Old 03-21-2009, 03:21 PM
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I tend to use fake light up against a white wall with the tube against the card. Apparently I'm not "right" but I seem to get pretty good results.

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post #9 of 9 Old 03-24-2009, 01:15 PM
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same here. i use the white of the card. i use my kitchen lighting and sometimes natural lighting. regardless my reading are pretty close. my tank is cycled so i know if the reading is where they should be. if it does look way off, i change the angle in which the light hits the bottle or retest. make sure you add the proper drops. if your not paying attention you could add more than intended.
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