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Water Testing....


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I was told the best place to get the answer to this would be this msg board so here I am ;)


I'll be setting up a 15 gal. in my office in the coming weeks and was wondering where my best bet is to pick up test kits for the following: ph, ammonia, nitrites, nitrates, and calcium.


Am I missing anything else I should be testing for? Is weekly overkill?!


Any advice on where to pick the kits up or what to get specifically would be MUCH appreciated....


Thanks ahead,



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try an OnLine Store like www.petwarehouse.com, www.thatpetplace.com, www.marinedepot.com, or www.customaquatic.com, last two are sponsors of this site.


you could opt for one of the basic kits that has everything in it to start.


key tests that i look for when i start new tanks are pH, ammonia, and nitrite. those are the must have's imo. don't forget the thermometer and hydrometer too.


the rest can wait as you'll be weeks or months from stocking the tank depending on your situation.

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I only use phosphate, calcium, and alkalinity. The rest when I started the tank up. I used the cheapo LFS 4in1 saltwater test kit for the begining stuff. I use Salifert for the others. I bought the Salifert stuff from the LFS too.

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You may find it cheaper to get the Hagen master test kit. Has 10 tests incl. CA, GH, KH, Low and High pH, NH4, NO2, NO3.....good for both salt and fresh...comes in a nice hard case...easy to use...and as accurate as my Aquarium Pharm., Seachem, Salifert, and Lamotte kits (yes, I am a test kit junky)..can usually get the hagen kit for about $38 or so on ebay.

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How sensitive is the Ph to maintaining a healthy tank for marine life? I've always followed the rule that it should remain constant and the critters would adapt to it. As long as you weren't increasing or decreasing the Ph dramatically and routinely, all would be fine.


At least that is how my FW tank is. Ph is a little high, but that's or water supply.


Using a RO water supply, what can be expected on a Ph count?

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No problem, wasn't trying to be confrontational at any level, was just curious if that was a typo or if I was missing something. Thanks for the response.



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Your pH shouldn't dip below 8.0 for extended periods, which in a healthy, buffered (good alkalinity) tank it really shouldn't do, because lower pH will affect the ability of some stonies to calcify new skeletal material. Low pH has also been implicated in algal blooms, especially cyano and diatoms.


The pH will cycle throughout the day (especially if you don't have a fuge) as oxygen is produced by plants, bacteria, and algae during the light cycle the pH will rise, when lights are out and bacteria and plants are respiring (which uses O2) the pH will go down a bit. Some people will measure pH when the lights come on and then when they go off to see how much (if any) their pH varies.

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