Whats a good water test kit? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 12 Old 10-03-2011, 05:43 PM Thread Starter
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Whats a good water test kit?

Been cycling my tank for about a month now, and those stupid test strips read the same after every single time. I know for a fact that my new tank has NOT had 0 levels of everything for a whole month straight. Finally going to go to the pet store and find a decent test kit that will tell me if there is any bad stuff in my tank right now. What brand/ type of test kit should I get?
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post #2 of 12 Old 10-03-2011, 06:15 PM
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api makes a pretty decent kit... and it is the one you will most likely find at the store.
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post #3 of 12 Old 10-03-2011, 06:58 PM
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Yeah...the api liquid kit seems to be the standard. Not sure its the best but certainly the most widely used.
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post #4 of 12 Old 10-03-2011, 07:10 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah...the api liquid kit seems to be the standard. Not sure its the best but certainly the most widely used.
I'm just going to take a sample of my water to the local pet shop and have them test the water. If the numbers are clear, then I will start adding more fish to the tank.
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post #5 of 12 Old 10-03-2011, 08:14 PM
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If the pet store is close to your house this will work temporarily but your gonna want to have a test kit, at first with a new tank you may need to test everyday and for sure every week. After about 6 months some people test less often but anytime you have any problems you will want to be able to test it. The strips can be quite inaccurate as you see.
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post #6 of 12 Old 10-03-2011, 09:22 PM
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Originally Posted by JordynMurdock View Post
I'm just going to take a sample of my water to the local pet shop and have them test the water. If the numbers are clear, then I will start adding more fish to the tank.
Not really a good plan if you ask me. Testing kits are just one of those things you really need to have. What if you have problems and the store is closed, you can't get there for one reason or another, there's a tank emergency and you really don't have time to go...just suck it up and get a kit. At least the main three...ammonia, nitrite, nitrate.
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post #7 of 12 Old 10-03-2011, 09:33 PM
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Dont ask the pet store. Often enough they dont even know how to read them. They act like they know what they are doing and say yeah your water is good, how much would you like to buy?

You buy your fish and they're dead 2 days later.
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post #8 of 12 Old 10-03-2011, 09:57 PM
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Oh...and I have seen several stores in the past use nothing more than test strips which we all know are pretty worthless.
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post #9 of 12 Old 10-03-2011, 10:45 PM
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As others have suggested I would get the API freshwater master test kit. Even though stores will test your water for you many use the test strips which are not realiable. Also as said by someone else if something goes wrong in your tank or with your fish one of the first things that you should do is to test your water parameters. Recently I myself had experienced several deaths of my platys, one of the first things that I did was test my water parameters to make sure that everything was in check. Having a test kit at home will allow you to monitor your water parameters easily and quickly, and if something was to through your water parameters out of whack you will be able to test and quickly be able to correct the problem.
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post #10 of 12 Old 10-04-2011, 11:44 AM
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I agree with what is being suggested. When starting a fish tank, a "master" kit such as the one made by API is worth having; tests for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pH are important. Down the road, after several months, testing for pH and nitrate is wise, at least periodically once you have consistent readings over a period of time. But if some fish issue does occur--and they do--being able to immediately test the water can save the fish by identifying issues or eliminating others.

The API liquid test is reliable and most of us seem to use this one. The Sera kits are also reliable, some say the best, but they are much more expensive and (at least around my area) infrequently available.

Byron.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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