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What do you test for and which brand of kits?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by slovan, Dec 15, 2007.

  1. slovan

    slovan Experienced Reefkeeper

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    Testing water parameters in our tank(s) is one of the most important things we can do for it.  I would like to know what you are testing for and which brands you use.  What made you buy it?  Was it price?  Availability?  Accuracy?  Ease of use?
    I use the Elos brand for my test kits.  They are easy to use and read. The color change is pretty evident so there's not much guessing as to what it is reading. I also like the quality. The syringes are bigger and easier to read the black rubber stop. The glass vials are also a nice touch over plastic ones.
    I don't know what the other brands have for testing quality but the Elos droppers are certified by the National Institute of Standards and Technology(NIST) so that each drop is equal to the next one. Plus their batches are tested by NIST for accuracy.
    I've owned quite a few Salifert kits in the past because I used to think they were the gold standard for accuracy. After trying Elos, I wouldn't think about going back.  Here's an article that reconfirmed my thoughts.  Test kit article
    Calcium test kit:
    [​IMG]
    All test kits:
    [​IMG]
     
  2. nick

    nick Well-Known ReefKeeper

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    for ammonia, nitrate, nitrite, ph, phosphate i like aquarium farms, but for magnesium, alk, and all the other fun ones i found seachem's are nice, kind of expesive but work good
     
  3. Guest

    Guest Guest

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    I'm using salifert, I might give ELOS a try when I run out.  So far they are doing a good job for me.
     
  4. BGreenlee

    BGreenlee Inactive User

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    I have been using Salifert for everything I test for a couple years. However, I have noticed issues in the last couple nitrate test kits that I have bought. I test for nitrate, nitrite (after any major change), ammonia (if a change or death occurs), silicate, phosphates, calcium, alk, and magenesium. I test my RO for silicates, phosphates, and ammonia (chloramine may be used where I live, cant get a straight answer).

    I started using the Salifert kits when I was having inconsistent reading with the other brands, but I may look at the Elos brand. Where do you get them from Sone?
     
  5. slovan

    slovan Experienced Reefkeeper

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    fnvarner, I have never heard of Aquarium Farms before, do you have a link?

    Marine Depot is supposed to start carrying it any day now and Phishy Business has been for awhile as far as online sales go. I got mine directly from Elos USA when I was setting up my tank.
     
  6. Waverz

    Waverz Expert Reefkeeper

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    I usually test for Ca, Mg, and Alk using Salifert test kits. I just ran out of Mg so i am thinking about giving Elos a try, how are there prices compared to Salifert?
     
  7. nick

    nick Well-Known ReefKeeper

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    sorry mis spell it aquarium pharmaceuticals, gots a little fish dressed up as a doctor
     
  8. slovan

    slovan Experienced Reefkeeper

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    They're anywhere from $4-$12 higher, depending on the kit. I know it seems high but it's nothing compared to when you start losing corals because of bad readings. Tropic Marin seems to have gotten good reviews in that article. I've also heard some people say API is pretty dependable.
     
  9. nick

    nick Well-Known ReefKeeper

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    i havent really got any bad readings from aquarium pharms but i am going to try more of the seachem i know they are more expensive but most times you get what you pay for
     
  10. Waverz

    Waverz Expert Reefkeeper

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    I think i will try the Elos kits, spending a few dollars more per kit is worth it if it is gonna save a person from nuking corals.
    Where do you buy them at???
     
  11. slovan

    slovan Experienced Reefkeeper

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    Phishy Business has them now and Marine Depot should have them any day. I can bring my test kits to the next meeting, you can test it to see how you like them.
     
  12. BGreenlee

    BGreenlee Inactive User

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    Posted By slovan on 12/15/2007 7:54 PM
    Phishy Business has them now and Marine Depot should have them any day. I can bring my test kits to the next meeting, you can test it to see how you like them.Their prices are not to bad for them.  I wouldnt mind running the test side by side to see what we get on the different kits.
     
  13. vvolfe1

    vvolfe1 Inactive User

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    I usually only test for calcium, mag, po4, alk, and ph at home using seachem tests. The po4 is kinda a bunk test though knowing that the salt and mag will cause the test to be off.
     
  14. Benji

    Benji Inactive User

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    ca,mg,n,ph,po4 and conductivity
     
  15. Benji

    Benji Inactive User

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    edit to add elos chemistry is probably the purest commercial grade [>79%] that is not prohibitivly expensive.

    most of the other widely available test kits contain chemistry that is only >49% purity

    the red sea [nh4nh3, no2, and no3] i tested averaged out to 52.3% ...note this was from a small sample from unique lot numbers with a sample size of 15 [5 from each test kit].
     
  16. slovan

    slovan Experienced Reefkeeper

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    Bump for an old thread. /site/DesktopModules/NTForums/themes/_default/emoticons/smile.gif  One of the guys over on RC who did the salt tests also did a test on several brand name kits.  From what I gather, API and Elos is pretty much right on the money.  With API being WAY cheaper of the two, I would look into getting the API.  Hope this helps for those on the fence...
    Test results

     
     
  17. BGreenlee

    BGreenlee Inactive User

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    Interesting news on those test kits. So you don't always get what you pay for?
     
  18. einsteins

    einsteins Experienced Reefkeeper

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    I just ordered a Red Sea Magnesium test...we will see how it does...

    eins
     
  19. mcclandy

    mcclandy

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    i have been using a Nutrafin CA test. My CA levels are in the 500's and have been wondering if this is correct. It just strikes me as a little higher than what i have been expecting. I dose two part and top off with lime water. But this is the first tank i have dosed two part on also. anyone else ever used the Nutrafin test? One of the guys at Iowa Pet foods and Aquatics recomended this test over the Instant ocean CA test that they stock on their shelves.
     
  20. slovan

    slovan Experienced Reefkeeper

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    Which brand of salt are you using?  Check out the link for a general test to salt mixes.  Hopefully yours will fall in line with what is shown.  If not, it could very well be an issue with the test kit.

    Salt mix comparison link
     

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