I just bought a meter at Petsmart that you put in your tank and it turns colors like a test strip would according to the levels of ammonia in your water. It says it lasts for up to a year. Any good or no?
What brand is it? I have one by Mardel. I find it's somewhat accurate, however I've done tests on it and it takes awhile to register a change - it was showing ammonia in my tank and wasn't fading back to yellow after significant water changes. So I took it out and put it in a glass of water just after lunch, and by the time I went home from work it still hadn't changed (so, at least 4 hours later). When i got back in the morning, it had gone back to yellow. Then when I put it back in, it took all day to register that there was ammonia in the tank. So I went and got a liquid test kit. I find the monitor is great to have in the long term, because if you don't test your water it will prompt you to do so, but if you're looking for instant results, stick with a liquid kit and find out what your ammonia level is in 5 minutes instead of 4+ hours.
I'm just trying to use it like...as soon as it shows the slightest bit of ammonia change my water that day or the next day so should it be okay for that?
What size tank? Once your tank is cycled, depending on the size, a weekly water change of 25 - 30% is sufficient. For small tanks you'd have to do them more often. I'd stick with the liquid test kit to see where you're at each week.
It's a ten gallon. I planned on doing a 50% water change once a week.
Any chance you're talking about AmmoniaAlert by Seachem ?
That one works great for me. I cycled with it, along with liquid tests and the resaults were very similar.
For that one, it takes almost no time at all (under a minute) to change the colour if there is ammonia present, but it does take a few hours to go back to yellow once the ammonia is gone.
Do you keep it in your tank all the time?
I do a 50% w/c on my cycled 10 gallon once a week and thats a healthy tank.
Perhaps the product varies from tank to tank, but it (AmmoniaAlert) wasn't accurate in Tony's tank. It was always yellow, even when the ammonia rose to .3ppm (I thought it was lower because of the meter.
I gave it to my brother for his goldfish tank. The ammonia was over 1ppm, but the meter showed it was at 0ppm.
This product never changed for me, whether the ammonia was at 0ppm or 1ppm, always bright yellow.:-?
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