Tests For Everything

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Tests For Everything

Postby Absolver » Thu Jul 11, 2013 1:41 am

My API Master Test Kit showed up today. I didn't realize it lacked KH and GH tests so I went back to Amazon and found them but I also found Copper, Calcium, Phosphate, Iron and...well there are way more pages of tests than I care to browse.

I don't have any plants, so I don't think I need the iron test kit? What's worth keeping an eye on, what's just money best spent on more aquarium decorations?
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Re: Tests For Everything

Postby Carylnz » Thu Jul 11, 2013 3:38 am

I have not used any test kits for years but for someone new to the hobby I would recommend ammonia, nitrite and nitrate. These are the 3 you will be asked for if you have a problem. Hardness kits can be useful in some areas.
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Re: Tests For Everything

Postby Absolver » Thu Jul 11, 2013 2:14 pm

I've got a snail so I'm under the impression that at lease the calcium content of the water is important for his shell? I'm mostly talking out of my backside on this :roll:
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Re: Tests For Everything

Postby Carylnz » Thu Jul 11, 2013 9:42 pm

Your backside is correct!
Snails need hard water as the alkalinity keeps their shell in good condition. If they are in acidic water their shell will quickly deteriorate, soften, and the snail will die.
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Re: Tests For Everything

Postby Absolver » Fri Jul 12, 2013 2:25 pm

Haha! Well one end has to be right now and then I suppose!

So I'm going with KH&GH being test-worthy. What's the importance of the magnesium and phosphate tests?
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Re: Tests For Everything

Postby Carylnz » Sat Jul 13, 2013 2:04 am

Magnesium is an essential part of chlorophyll, which is necessary for photosynthesis, especially for corals. I think it is usually tested in marine tanks, not freshwater.
High phosphates can contribute to algae growth and outbreaks.
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Re: Tests For Everything

Postby Absolver » Sat Jul 13, 2013 2:28 am

That's spectacularly helpful!

No live plants (yet, I have dreams...) and no issues with algae as of yet. But I know my KH is important. I tested my tap water for the first time and had to use the API High Range pH test and got a reading of 8.4!! My tank is very stable and stays at about 7.2, so keeping the KH where it needs to be will be good when I do tank cleanings (20gal tank and I tend to remove 2.5-3gal when I clean the tank--once a week).
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