Which tests are important ??

Discussion in 'Beginner Discussions' started by kssquared, 13 Jan 2008.

  1. kssquared

    kssquared

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    I need to start buying test kits for my reef tank. Which tests are the most important & how often must you test ?
     
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  3. Mekaeel

    Mekaeel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    in a mature tank.Ca,Alk,Mg,No3,Po4 IMO
     
  4. Mike

    Mike Retired Moderator

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    As above, but in your new tank, ammonia, then nitrite, nitrate an phosphate are your most important, then as the ammonia and nitrite start to hit zero, you will also need a Ph tester, also, a refractometer for your salt level (note NOT a hydrometer) This is measured in Specific gravity - you will want 1.026sg or 35ppt (parts per thousand)
     
  5. palmerc

    palmerc

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    I would go for alk, Ca and nitrate as a minimum.
     
  6. Warr7207

    Warr7207

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    Is there any tolerance on the specific gravity level ?
     
  7. viper357

    viper357 Admin MASA Contributor

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    You can run your tank anywhere between 1.021 and 1.026, but the preferred level seems to be around 1.024 - 1.026.

    Whatever level you choose to run at, be sure to maintain it at that level, fluctuations in salinity (SG) are very stressful to your tank inhabitants.
     
  8. jacquesb

    jacquesb Retired Moderator

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    Dean - and others - just a FYI - in the sea (more so in estuary lagoons than deeper out in the sea) the SG sometimes fluctuates about between 1.022 and 1.029 at the same spot - this depends on amount of railfall, rivier run-off - and in general wether it's the "dry season" or "wet season"....

    So, I believe personally that the life-stock in our tanks can indeed handle a much bigger range of salinity than what we think - BUT as long as this change happens VERY VERY slowly...... In my tank I have had the salinity down to as low as 1.020 (when I accidentally left the RO water open and running into my tank), up to as high as 1.027 - without ANY dire consequences - no die-off at all - and NO siginificant difference in the way my life-stock look or act (corals, anemone's, fish, etc)....

    As long as the overall levels stay reasonably constant - within a certain range. And as long as NO CHANGES OCCUR VERY QUICKLY! It's the QUICK changing parameters that kill!
     
  9. Warr7207

    Warr7207

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    Thanks for the info. The mistake I made was topping up with saltwater. I topped up last night with RO water and the gravity is back to 1.026.
     
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