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Reds12

Water parameter testing products.

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Hello!

I know to each their own, but curious about everyone's thoughts anyway.

I'm about ready to order some new products - which include a new test kit since my API is about dead on products (and I'm down 2 test tubes anyway thanks to a 2 year old) but I've been recently looking at test equipment vs. drops/strips kits.

Has anyone used water quality testing equipment? I've seen some digital ones that have pretty decent reviews, and although a little pricier than the kits, I'd think they'd be more accurate purely on the reduction of human error using them, no?

If you have one, which is it and would you buy it again?

Thanks!

- I'm also needing new filter media, so on an aside, if you have something you hands down stand behind, I'd love to know what. :) I'd like to get away from the carbon cartriges.

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A little pricier? Those that actually work are very expensive. I don't have any, and the only one that would interest me at all would be a pH pen. My water pH is in the low 8s, and IMO using the API high pH test is about the same as using a random number generator. Actually, my water is rock hard and very stable, so I have little reason to test pH.

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I briefly looked at digital equipment for my tank, but I remember thinking they were expensive. And having used digital pH meters years ago at work, I remember doing a LOT of calibrating with them, which was a pain. I didn't research the water marketed ones, but I assume they have some sort of calibration requirements as well. Not something you'll want a 2 year old anywhere near either, the ones I used were somewhat delicate.

I do own a digital TDS meter for my shrimp tank that is super easy to use. And that'd I'd buy another of if it broke. But its not something I use for my goldfish tank.

If you're not wanting to fuss with test tubes, the Seachem Nitrite/Nitrate test kit doesn't use test tubes and is easy to use. Not sure about the other Seachem tests as I've not tried those.

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You have a good point about meter calibrating. They probably do need to be done fairly regularly. I did see a newer product that suction cups to the glass in the water and you leave it there. It apparently tests 5600 times a month and will alert you if any concerns arise. It wasn't horribly expensive considering, but if I remember correctly it only tests pH, ammonia, temperature and something else I don't remember, but not nitrates/nitrites. Too bad though :(

My pH never changes and temperature is pretty consistent year round too, so it'd be a waste for me for that one.

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I personally like the API Master Test Kit (drops) better than the Seachem kits and I would never use any test strips. As Shakaho (and Alex) have said, the meters that really work are quite expensive.

As for your filter media question...what kind of filter(s) do you have?

I have Aquaclear filters and use:

Fluval Sponges

Marineland Rite-Size Blue Filter padding

Fluval Biomax

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I personally like the API Master Test Kit (drops) better than the Seachem kits and I would never use any test strips. As Shakaho (and Alex) have said, the meters that really work are quite expensive.

As for your filter media question...what kind of filter(s) do you have?

I have Aquaclear filters and use:

Fluval Sponges

Marineland Rite-Size Blue Filter padding

Fluval Biomax

I have Aqueon Quietflow filters, but one is about to die so I'm actually looking into new a new filter. I haven't decided on that yet, but I'll still need stuff for the quietflow. I bought a couple boxes of carbon cartridge before when that was all I was using, so I'm still using them until they're gone then don't want to buy anymore. I've since added Seachem matrix, purigen and some filter floss.

Edited by Reds12

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I personally like the API Master Test Kit (drops) better than the Seachem kits and I would never use any test strips. As Shakaho (and Alex) have said, the meters that really work are quite expensive.

As for your filter media question...what kind of filter(s) do you have?

I have Aquaclear filters and use:

Fluval Sponges

Marineland Rite-Size Blue Filter padding

Fluval Biomax

I have Aqueon Quietflow filters, but one is about to die so I'm actually looking into new a new filter. I haven't decided on that yet, but I'll still need stuff for the quietflow. I bought a couple boxes of carbon cartridge before when that was all I was using, so I'm still using them until they're gone then don't want to buy anymore. I've since added Seachem matrix, purigen and some filter floss.

When I had the Quietflows, I just cut a piece of the blue Marineland bonded filter pad to fit the Aqueon's blue holster where the cartridges go. Then, I would just put the biomax in the space around the holster. This provides mechanical and biological filtration. Chemical filtration isn't necessary on a regular basis.

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I personally like the API Master Test Kit (drops) better than the Seachem kits and I would never use any test strips.  As Shakaho (and Alex) have said, the meters that really work are quite expensive.

 

As for your filter media question...what kind of filter(s) do you have?

 

I have Aquaclear filters and use:

 

Fluval Sponges

Marineland Rite-Size Blue Filter padding

Fluval Biomax

 

I have Aqueon Quietflow filters, but one is about to die so I'm actually looking into new a new filter.  I haven't decided on that yet, but I'll still need stuff for the quietflow.  I bought a couple boxes of carbon cartridge before when that was all I was using, so I'm still using them until they're gone then don't want to buy anymore.   I've since added Seachem matrix, purigen and some filter floss. 

 

When I had the Quietflows, I just cut a piece of the blue Marineland bonded filter pad to fit the Aqueon's blue holster where the cartridges go.  Then, I would just put the biomax in the space around the holster.  This provides mechanical and biological filtration.  Chemical filtration isn't necessary on a regular basis.
I do the same thing, but with the DFS blue bonded filter pad. It works great. No reason to get a different filter, IMO.

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