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Salifert Nitrate Test Kit Versus Api Nitrate Test Kit


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Sep 23, 2013
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Northeastern USA
My tank parameters are fairly stable having been established for over 2 years.   But since my 29 gallon long is stocked on the heavier side,  I find that it's good to keep an eye on nitrate levels .   I change out at least 50% of the water weekly to keep it in check.  If nitrate readings exceed 30%,  I change out even more of the water or do an extra water change.  
PH, ammonia and nitrites all stay in a proper range.  So I am mainly concerned with nitrate readings.  For the last 2 years, I have used the API test kit to test all these parameters and it seems to fine for all except the nitrate levels.  Using the API nitrate test, I find it hard to decipher the colors for nitrates to get an accurate reading.  And you have to shake the 2 bottles of test solutions very thoroughly which is inconvenient and time consuming.   
On Amazon, I read excellent reviews for the Salifert nitrate test kit so I thought I'd give it a try.   I am impressed with the ease of use of this test kit.   To use it, you use the included syringe to measure out 1 ml of tank water and then add just 4 drops of test solution and one level spoonful (small spoon included with test kit) of powder and then just swirl the solution for 5 seconds.   Then in 3 minutes, you compare the color of the solution with the included color chart.   You can read as low as less than 1 ppm nitrate to as high as 100 ppm and it's easier to discern the colors than it is using the API test kit which has a lower range of accuracy in my opinion.
Only slight drawback in my opinion is that the Salifert test kit costs moderately higher per test compared to the API test kit.   But to me, it is worth the extra cost for ease of use,  ease of reading the results, and accuracy.
If you get frustrated with using the API test kit,  give Salifert a try.  I think you'll like it.
here is link to Amazon offering of the Salifert test kit and related reviews.  Shop around for best price.  
Apr 24, 2015
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I was actually thinking about changing all my test solutions to Salifert. We use their products at my job to test saltwater parameters.
I do wish they read the same way the Alkalinity, Calcium and Magnesium tests are done. You find your results based on how much liquid solution you have left in the syringe after dripping it into 5 ml of the water you're testing. For example: (x) mililiters in syringe equals (x) ppm.
It really pinpoints what you're testing and is really useful when testing a reef tank.