Water testing kits are the foundation of a healthy marine aquarium after all you can’t just look at the water and know what’s going on. Maintaining stable water parameters is the key for fish and corals to thrive, and the more precise you can be with results the more you will see your aquarium flourish.
Slow growing corals, fish acting strange, or unsightly algae are all signs something is off in your tank. Testing can alert you to nutrient buildup or element deficiencies, and knowing your baseline parameters versus current test results will help you diagnose any issues your tank might be having.
A testing regime will help you dial in parameters to maximize growth and color, and consistent testing will ensure your parameters never get this out of control. User friendly, precision testing kits are important so aquarist aren’t confused by testing and instead embrace this important reef keeping ritual.
Here are some of the best test kits you can buy for saltwater reef aquariums.
- Red Sea Marine Care Test Kits
Red Sea Marine Care Multi Test Kit is a Complete multi-test pack including all of the tests necessary to monitor the biological maturation of new systems and for the ongoing maintenance and algae management of fish-only aquariums. The Marine Care Multi Test Kit includes the tests pH, KH, ammonia, nitrate and nitrite.
- Elo Water Analysis Kits
ELOS test kits are manufactured and tested to the highest standards that are unparalleled in this industry. The test kits use high-quality reagents with real color technology to give you accurate results color comparison results. There are fourteen parameters available to test including high-resolution nitrate and phosphate.
- Salifert Test Kit
Salifert is one of the oldest and well know test kit brands in the industry. The test kits have a sharp color change for calculating precise values. Salifert offers tests for sixteen saltwater aquarium parameters and are widely available at many reef aquarium stores and online retailers.
- Nyos Reefer Aquarium Test Kits
Nyos® Reefer test kits offer laboratory quality that allow you to achieve highly precise and reproducible results at an affordable price. Nyos Reefer tests are made in Germany using calibrated droppers, analyzed reagents and small batch production to keep quality high and uniform.
- Hanna Marine Line Test Kits
Hanna Instruments Marine Line has innovative instrumentation for monitoring important water quality parameters in a saltwater reef aquarium. The Marine Line product family includes products for the measurement of alkalinity, calcium, phosphate/phosphorous, and specific gravity. Marine Line is completed with a line of maintenance solutions including calibration check solutions for checking the Checker HC colorimeters.
- ICP Water Testing Method
ICP testing is the most detailed water analysis you could ask for. ICP tests require you to collect a sample of water and send it to one of a growing list of companies who perform the ICP-OSE (Inductively coupled plasma – optical emission spectrometry) analysis.
Once your test has been received the ICP test results are sent in an online report. These reports include the precise composition of elements to the part per billion, ppb, and parts per million, ppm.
ICP test results can help you diagnose abnormalities such as metals leaching from equipment or contaminated water source. These results would be impossible to detect with standard titration test kits, and ICP testing technologies have revolutioned the way we test.
ICP test does not replace everyday testing kits, but the longterm testing and dosing regimes which accompany the results offer aquarists the most advanced option.