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API Nitrate Tests
i have an API Master Test Kit that included test for Ammonia, PH high & low, Nitrites, and Nitrates.
i was getting low on the Nitrate tests, and recently bought a API individual Nitrate Test.
here is a picture of the packaging of each...
each product contained the exact same looking bottles used for the tests. the thing that i find odd is that the two color charts are noticeably different. here is a pic of those...
the one on the left is from the Master Test Kit, and the one on the right is from the Nitrate Test kit.
i accidentally cut the numbers off on the right color chart, but they read the same.
why are the colors so different, and which one would you experts consider the correct one?
overall, i'm not a big fan of API's testing. i find the PH test results are hard to differentiate the colors.
and also, on these two Nitrate color charts in my pic, i can't even tell the difference in some of them. particulary, on the Master Test Kit chart, can anyone tell the difference between the 10 or the 20ppm colors. and on the individual Nitrate test, 40 and 80 look identical to me. maybe my eyesight is bad when it comes to that, i don't know.
I know what you mean but just make sure that when you test it you get orange or a lighter color. The test is specific and the color differences and almost thesama but all you need to worry about is for that test to give you and orange result or lower. Any red is bad for the fish no matter how dark.
the best results you can get is light orange.
I use the API nitrate test and I just checked my card and it is different from yours with respect to the 20, 40 and 80 colours. Mine are near identical, yours have more variability. I've never worried about this, as 20ppm is the "safe" limit for me, and my tanks are always 5 ppm or zero.
The Sierra test kits are said to be the best, but they are quite expensive. I've never used them.
Another point though, do you shake Regent #2 for at least 2 minutes? TRhe instructions say 30 seconds, but this often leads to a faulty (and high) reading. Two minutes plus will result in a more accurate test.
Seems my test kits are getting old... I buy the master test kits in the cardboard boxes and they have the individual cards for each test. As far as nitrate it matters somewhat. I try to keep my tanks below 40ppm since my tap water has 20ppm. Its not something I monitor though, test a few times a year. Nitrate test kits are not very accurate at all. What byron said does help, but I also cross reference my kit to our well water tests then a zero reading on RO water usually once a year.
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