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Water Tests - How Often?



I have been getting more into my fishkeeping since coming on here and learning more about it, and then I got more into tropical fish and have learned more about them. Oh and bought a 5ft tank that I wasn't planning on!! ;)

I started testing my own water instead of going to the lfs around mid December and since then I have been very good and wrote everything down for all my tanks and doing tests before every water change.

My readings are consistently good, although my biggest tank is showing higher ph and a trace of amonia today.

And so, I am now interested that I am doing all the tests that I should be doing. I do ph, amonia, nitrIte and sometimes oxygen. Should I be testing nitrAte? I was going to buy a test kit but they seem fairly expensive when there's so many other things I would like to buy in my lfs!! I have never had any nitrIte so I always thought there was no need. Am I wrong? :unsure:

What do you test and how often?

Thanks :hi

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