Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Mirta 05-03-2007 02:23 PM

Water parameters
Thanks to the friendly advice here I found out about water testing. I bought a test kit today and used it to check the water. It says it tests for NO2, NO3, KH, GH, pH.

So according to the test the parameters are: NO2 - OK, although it is hard to tell with this particular test because the difference in color is only slight. Then, NO3 is between 10 and 25, KH - 6, GH - >21, pH - 7,2.

Despite all the info I've read here and in the lit leaflet it is still difficult for me to conclude whether the water is good for my fish. I have a 40g tank with barbs, an angel, some cories, two ancistruses, a mysterious catfish, lots of teenage applesnails. The cories will go to a new tank soon.

I understand that the water is pretty hard. I have a bogwood piece in there, maybe I should do something else?

I will appreciate any kind advice.[/code]

Amphitrite 05-03-2007 03:03 PM

Hi Mirta,

What sort of test kit do you have? Is it liquid or strips? (liquid is more reliable)

Ideally, your readings should be:

Ammonia 0
Nitrite 0
Nitrate - should be present but not too high.

When you say your NO2 reading is ok - is there a reading then? If so I would recommend water changes to bring this down.

Also, have you tested for ammonia, and how long has the tank been set up and stocked for?

Mirta 05-03-2007 03:37 PM

Hi kateyoup!
thank you for your reply.

This is a strip test. I don't think liquid ones are available. Ammonia is not on the list. The info leaflet says that ammonia and ammonium produce nitrites. But it offers no testing for this stuff.

There is almost no coloring for NO2 - nitrite, and there is no reading. The bar says it's OK or not OK if the colour is stronger pink. Mine is very feeble.

The tank is about 7 years old. It has never been heavily stocked, but we have bought a new tank and some creatures have been introduced into the old one temporarily. They will be relocated very soon. Also some of the snails will have to move house.

We have actually done some partial water change lately, and I am afraid to disturb the tank. But maybe it is necessary after all. My tiger barbs do swim with their snouts down anymore... I will have to watch it for some time.

xxthrwitdwnxx 05-03-2007 06:30 PM

u need to get a liquid some how there better then strips more accurate to try going with the brand api

Mirta 05-04-2007 02:25 AM

I'll shop around for the liquid ones. Maybe someone sells them here.

Amphitrite 05-04-2007 02:55 AM

Have you tried eBay? That's where I get mine - I find they're less expensive than buying them down the local LFS.

The API master test kit is great, and lasts for ages!

Mirta 05-04-2007 12:55 PM

I have never tried ebay. In fact, I do not know how to do it. It will probably take some time for shipment.

I will go to the nearest pet shop tomorrow (where I bought the one I have) and ask them to research for Api in Riga. If they have no luck I will check in Lithuania, as I am planning a short trip there soon.

What if this cannot wait? I will change some of the water anyway. Also what if the new water I put into the tank already contains nitrates and nitrites?

I am also worried about the hardness of the water.

xxthrwitdwnxx 05-04-2007 02:30 PM

ok if you are using tap water there is no nitrate or nitrites that is part of the cycle process which wont be in tap water. and they make water test kits for hardwater and if u have hard water use a water conditioner.

and for the api master test kit try aquabid as well

Mirta 05-07-2007 03:03 PM

Thank you!
I have tested the water again today and it definitely does not show any nitrites. But I will look for api.

Amphitrite 05-07-2007 03:11 PM

Good luck finding a test kit Mirta. API is my preferred brand, but there are other liquid test kits available, one of them being Hagen.

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