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Old 02-05-2013, 07:22 PM   #1
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Test Kit Advice

I'm looking to get a few more test kits now that I'm beginning to add corals to my tank. All I have now are ricordias, rhodactis mushrooms, zoa colony, snowflake polyp colony, and a sinularia leather. I don't really have any intentions of adding SPS corals, if I do it will be quite a while, but I do want to add some LPS. I know some trace elements will be used up and will affect the corals so I want to make sure I'm able to test for these. I have the basic tests (ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH). I'm planning on buying tests for calcium, magnesium, phosphate, and alk. From my reading, I believe those will be what I need to get.

My questions are which brands would be best to get and what to avoid. Also, are there any that have a set of most of those tests so that I wouldn't need to buy all separately.

I saw that RedSea has a test kit set that covers all but phosphates, so I would need to buy that separate. But is RedSea any good?

I'm just looking at the best way, while saving some money if possible, to get the test kits I need. I figure if something like that set above is reliable it would be the best way to go about getting all of the tests I need.

Any advice is on any of this or related is appreciated

Here is the link for the RedSea kit I mentioned

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/produc...4&pcatid=23774
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Old 02-05-2013, 07:25 PM   #2
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Red Sea is very good. I use them too. Easy to read too.
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Old 02-05-2013, 07:37 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beengirl View Post
Red Sea is very good. I use them too. Easy to read too.
Great, thanks!

Easy to read is definitely a plus too. Especially since they offer a set like that, much cheaper than buying each kit separately.

Would that kit plus a phosphate test be all I would really need?

I noticed that RedSea has a kit for Iodine, Potassium, and Iron. I'm not sure if or why I would need this.

Aquarium Water Testing: Red Sea Reef Colors Pro Multi Test Kit for Saltwater Coral Reef Aquariums

Just want to make sure I've got everything covered for keeping just softies and LPS basically.
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Old 02-06-2013, 06:10 AM   #4
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I like the Red Sea tests they are easy to read and you can buy refills for the reagents instead of a whole new kit. Also their jars are better than API's test tubes with leaky caps.
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Old 02-06-2013, 05:24 PM   #5
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If you are planning on dosing anything, you SHOULD test for it. SO if you want to dose iodine you should consider testing for it as well. Other than that, you shouldn't need those extras (Fe, Pot, copper etc). Unless you don't use RO/DI or distilled water, in which case you might want to consider the extra tests to keep an eye out for heavy metals.
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Old 02-06-2013, 05:35 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amanda_marie View Post

Great, thanks!

Easy to read is definitely a plus too. Especially since they offer a set like that, much cheaper than buying each kit separately.

Would that kit plus a phosphate test be all I would really need?

I noticed that RedSea has a kit for Iodine, Potassium, and Iron. I'm not sure if or why I would need this.

Aquarium Water Testing: Red Sea Reef Colors Pro Multi Test Kit for Saltwater Coral Reef Aquariums

Just want to make sure I've got everything covered for keeping just softies and LPS basically.
I have the reef test kit and then the basics (ammo, trate, trite). I don't have the phosphate one because I've never had an algae problem. If I ever do develop one, though, I'll buy the Red Sea one.
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Old 02-06-2013, 07:33 PM   #7
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Thanks for all of the replies

Quote:
Originally Posted by Danielbdn View Post
I like the Red Sea tests they are easy to read and you can buy refills for the reagents instead of a whole new kit. Also their jars are better than API's test tubes with leaky caps.
Ugh, yeah I don't much care for the tubes and caps with the API test kits. I just recently purchased a Salifert nitrate test kit and I like it much better than the API.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ingy

If you are planning on dosing anything, you SHOULD test for it. SO if you want to dose iodine you should consider testing for it as well. Other than that, you shouldn't need those extras (Fe, Pot, copper etc). Unless you don't use RO/DI or distilled water, in which case you might want to consider the extra tests to keep an eye out for heavy metals.
I definitely know not to dose unless I'm able to test for it. I just wasn't sure what levels (besides the kits I listed I'm purchasing) that might be needed to monitor.

Also, I so used RO/DI so no worries there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beengirl

I have the reef test kit and then the basics (ammo, trate, trite). I don't have the phosphate one because I've never had an algae problem. If I ever do develop one, though, I'll buy the Red Sea one.
The only algae bloom I've had has been diatoms, not other issues. So I may wait before I worry about a phosphate test kit, makes sense.
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Old 02-06-2013, 07:43 PM   #8
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I would get a PO4 test kit even if you don't have an algae problem. Readings about 0.03ppm can start to cause issues with coral growth and health. I really like the Hanna Checker for PO4. The rest of my test kits are all Red Sea. They are very high quality, and generally easy to read. I much prefer them to API or Salifert.
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Old 02-06-2013, 08:13 PM   #9
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I would get a PO4 test kit even if you don't have an algae problem. Readings about 0.03ppm can start to cause issues with coral growth and health. I really like the Hanna Checker for PO4. The rest of my test kits are all Red Sea. They are very high quality, and generally easy to read. I much prefer them to API or Salifert.
Really happy to hear that RedSea is high quality and that so many are using and like these tests.

Sounds like it could be useful to have a test kit for phosphates. I'd hate to start having issues with any corals and not be able to easily dismiss or pinpoint phosphates as the issue.

Is this what you're talking about?

Hanna Checker Phosphate PO4 Colorimeter - Bulk Reef Supply
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Old 02-06-2013, 08:15 PM   #10
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That's the one.
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