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Old 02-10-2014, 11:05 PM   #1
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Water test

What the best thing to buy to test ur water? I bought the test strip lil hard to understand can someone plz help me understand how to read it
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Old 02-10-2014, 11:09 PM   #2
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The strips are very inaccurate. A good starter test kit are the liquid tests by api
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Old 02-10-2014, 11:10 PM   #3
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Ok how would a newbie like me under stand it ???
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Old 02-12-2014, 01:45 PM   #4
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The directions are easy to follow. You just match colors when you finish the test. At least on the API.
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Old 02-12-2014, 02:05 PM   #5
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Get the api reef masters test kit I'm pretty new to this too. I started freshwater and my test strip worked but I found the api master test kits to be a necessity now. They are accurate and last a while. If you plan to spend money on a reef system I'd say buy a reef master kit also get the amonia test kit which will be seperate. Go to your lfs ask them what you need. Don't be cheap it's not worth it. Another thing be sure to read the test instructions thoroughly and check the expiration dates.

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Old 02-12-2014, 03:08 PM   #6
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API kits are good for starters, that's what I used until recently. Once you get the hang of it, you can go to Salifert or Hanna Checkers. They are more precise and easier to read.
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Old 02-12-2014, 04:41 PM   #7
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Go with red sea testing methods
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Old 02-12-2014, 04:43 PM   #8
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RedSea is good, but for beginners learning the ropes, API is "good enough"...A few drops, a few shakes, and waiting for 5 minutes is less intimidating than some of the instructions with the other kits (my Salifert Mg test has 3 reagants, for example).

Ease of use will lead to regular testing, which increases the chance of a successful tank. Once the OP is used to the process and comfortable with it, they can "graduate" to the higher-end test kits.
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Old 02-12-2014, 04:53 PM   #9
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What's wrong with api is it really that inaccurate. I am curious as to why one would jump to a different method.

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Old 02-12-2014, 04:56 PM   #10
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The accuracy of API is doubted by some. For me, it was more the level of precision available (ie, they couldn't read low enough). For instance, the API phosphate test goes from 0 - 0.25 ppm. However, anything less than 0.25 is impossible to determine, and you don't know the true value. With the Hanna Checker, I know my PO4 is around 0.01 - 0.02ppm. Same with the nitrate tests...API goes from 0-5ppm in it's first step. With the Salifert kit, I can test down to 0.1ppm.

Folks have done tests on API vs other brands with calibrated test solutions, and API seems to be middle of the road in terms of accuracy.
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