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0ppm Nitrates Even With Ferts?

Discussion in 'Planted Chit Chat' started by trojannemo, Oct 3, 2008.

  1. trojannemo

    trojannemo Member

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    well in the past when i had plants for a while i was only dosing Leaf Zone or Flourish, and not very often. obviously my plants didnt last. while that was going on, when testing the water using API Master Test Kit my nitrates were always coming back at 0ppm...this was explained as being bottomed out by the plants for lack of nutrients...this was blamed for the resulting algae blooms and plant decay.

    now i have eco-complete substrate, root tabs, and i'm dosing liquid ferts daily and the plants are growing nicely, absolutely no sign of algae...yet my nitrates come back at 0ppm still :blink: is it possible that the liquid test kit can be wrong? or do i really have 0ppm nitrate and if so, WHY?
     
  2. SuperColey1

    SuperColey1 Planted Section

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    What fert are you using? It may not have nitrate in it if it is off the shelf. If it does have nitrate in:

    Add at least 1ml of your fert direct to 4ml tap water in the test tube and test it. It should come up with the highest reading. I will bet money your test kit is (raspberry being blown.)

    I sem to remember testing the exact same test kit on 5ml of my DIY fert which should have come out at 1000s of ppm and it showed 20ish which says something about the accuracy.

    Problem with testing to find out problems in the tank is the accuracy of standard tests are not good to say the least and lead the user on a goose chase as they think something is awry (or sometimes is OK) when the opposite is true.

    You have to spend some real money to get test kits that are anywhere near accurate enough.

    So stop testing you have sorted the problem and will only convince yourself there is something wrong still if you keep testing. My suggestion would be keep the Ph tests for your CO2 dropchecker (if you don't have CO2 you may in the future) and chuck the rest away as you don't need them. They give you the wrong results anyway so whats the point in wasting the time testing with them.

    AC
     
  3. three-fingers

    three-fingers Member

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    If the kits older than 6 months I'd say you need the nitrate part replaced, at least the API nitrate test doest last long.

    Mine reads 0ppm now too.
     
  4. aaronnorth

    aaronnorth www.ukaps.org

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    API or known for innacurate results, but NO3 tests on every kit are not very accurate. as long as your plants dont show signs of nitrogen defficiecy then i wouldnt worry too much.

    my guess is that the test kit is wrong, there will surely be always a certain amount of NO3 detectable in the tank with livestock, etc
     
  5. trojannemo

    trojannemo Member

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    i'm using the entire line of SeaChem ferts...i really i'm not sure which of them has nitrate on it but i'm sure one of them has to! i'm dosing out of 7 bottles daily :blink:
    im not a compulsive tester...this is the first time in months i check for nitrate again. i have great filtration and water quality is 99% of the time spot on, so i dont really feel the need to test that often...but since i changed the entire gravel, added mopani and started dosing for plants, i felt i should check all parameters that my test kit does.
    thanks for the advice!


    yep the test kit is nearly 8 months old now :rolleyes:


    this is probably going to sound stupid to you guys...but how do i know what symptoms are signs of what type of defficiency? :blush:
     
  6. SuperColey1

    SuperColey1 Planted Section

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    by watching the plants and then matching their symptoms to a list that someone else who knows more than me has done (This is one of many but is the site we use more often than not:)

    http://www.theplantedtank.co.uk/deficiencies.htm

    AC
     
  7. aaronnorth

    aaronnorth www.ukaps.org

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    i also usee the aqua essentials guide (in my sig)
     

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