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Old 03-22-2007, 08:17 PM   #1
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How do I calibrate a test kit?

I see this in discussion all the time, and I suspect my cheapo nitrate and phosphate test kits to be off the mark. Can someone please explain it to me as if I was a five year old? What chemicals do I use to make the calibration solution? Do I need RO water to do it, etc? Any help is appreciated!
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Old 03-22-2007, 10:43 PM   #2
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Pretty simple, but a little laborsome. Start with distilled water. Find a calculator online and measure out a precise dose of NO3 (for example) in a measured quantity of water. So basically you know you have created a 10ppm solution say. Run that through your test kit and compare it to your color chart for accuracy. Then make a 5ppm, 20ppm etc ... keep these samples and compare against your tank test for a much more accurate reading.

Kind of a pain though.
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Old 03-23-2007, 05:11 PM   #3
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There is a nice sticky on this forum with information about Calibration of test kits.

http://www.aquariumadvice.com/viewtopic.php?t=91517
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Old 03-24-2007, 09:55 AM   #4
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What I needed to know was how much nitrate or phosphate per liter to add to bring it up to certain levels. Also, I only have seachem liquid ferts which I am not sure I should be using as my calibration medium. It does say right there on the bottle, but I am not 100% positive I am doing it correctly. Thanks for your help.
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Old 03-24-2007, 12:00 PM   #5
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I would use dry ferts with Chuck's calculator:

http://www.csd.net/~cgadd/aqua/art_plant_aquacalc.htm
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Old 03-25-2007, 06:29 PM   #6
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How to from Tropical Fish Forum:

http://www.fishforums.net/index.php?showtopic=169942

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Old 03-26-2007, 05:10 PM   #7
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You can use my fert calculator for dosing Seachem liquid ferts (or dry ferts). It is set up to be used for EI, but it can also tell you how much to dose per gallon to get a certain PPM. Don't be surprised by how much Seachem fert you actually have to add.

http://webpages.charter.net/zezmo/EI..._v4_public.xls
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