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  1. #11

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    5 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by Slaphppy7 View Post
    Well, that almost defeats the purpose of the test, then (?)

    If you are to wait a full, exact 5 minutes before reading results, then whatever color it changes to in the meantime should be meaningless.
    My thoughts exactly. Their "explanation" is that the test (and the 5 minute wait) only works for levels up to 5 ppm, which is the stated limit of the test. Anything above 5 ppm can produce "unexpected" results. For cycling, though, it doesn't matter, because all we need to know is if nitrites are zero or not. If the sample turns any shade of purple at any point, you got nitrites and the cycle isn't done.

    Quote Originally Posted by BIO-Linist View Post
    Interesting. Anyway if you really wanted to know the nitrite concentration when it's off the scale, you could dilute your sample with distilled water until results are readable. Then multiply by (total volume of diluted sample)/(volume of sample before dilution).
    I thought about this, but for cycling all I care about is that nitrites are present... I don't really need to know the exact level :-)

    Quote Originally Posted by Rocksor View Post
    Within the first minute it will no longer be a sky blue, possibly a dark blue close to 0.25ppm. In 1-2 minutes, it will be going to a light purple. This is enough to tell you that there are nitrites present during a fishless cycle. For only cycling purposes, you don't have to wait for 5 minutes.
    This is what I ended up doing. If the vial turned purple at any point during the five minutes, I knew it was non-zero, which is all i needed.

    Quote Originally Posted by Brhino View Post
    I'm not trying to be contrary or anything. Just wondering why it worked out differently for me.
    Well, what API said is that the test can behave "unexpectedly" beyond 5 ppm.... I will guess by "unexpectedly" they may have also meant inconsistently. Their point was that the test can only produce reliable results for levels at or below 5 ppm. So, to really measure high levels of nitrites, you'd have to use Biolinist's method.

  2. #12

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    1 Not allowed!
    Hey i think you should sticky this thread cause i had no idea about this and I'm glad you posted it.
    He with head in clouds falls down hole.
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  3. #13

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    2 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by wgoldfarb View Post
    I had just gotten my first zero ammonia reading. .
    That is the benefit of fully understanding how the nitrogen cycle and how the process of cycling a tank works. Knowing you should be reading nitrites makes you question the test results and discover the limitations of the API test kits.

    You can not place all of your faith in a test kit. You need to combined that with knowledge and experience.
    If you take your time to do the research FIRST, you can successfully set-up and keep ANY type of aquarium with ease.
    "Not using a quarantine tank is like playing Russian roulette. Nobody wins the game, some people just get to play longer than others." - Anthony Calfo
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  4. #14

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    2 Not allowed!
    Absolutely! It was precisely because of what I have learned that I decided to not trust the test result, and dig a little deeper. I'm glad I did, or I would have added fish to a tank with well over 5 ppm nitrites!

  5. #15

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    0 Not allowed!
    That was very interesting, thanks for posting this info.
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  6. #16

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    0 Not allowed!
    Any chance we can add this to a sticky? Very important info to know when cycling.

  7. #17

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    2 Not allowed!
    I'm glad I found this. I'll keep an eye on the test for the full 5 minutes. I think I have been, but now I'm maybe not so sure I didn't get distracted and miss a color change. Thanks.

  8. #18

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    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by BettaFuyo View Post
    Hey i think you should sticky this thread cause i had no idea about this and I'm glad you posted it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Silbar View Post
    Any chance we can add this to a sticky? Very important info to know when cycling.
    Bumping.....

  9. #19

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    1 Not allowed!
    This thread is now a Sticky in the Cycling section of the Beginner forum.

    Nice work, wgoldfarb.
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  10. #20

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    2 Not allowed!
    Thanks slap, and everyone else who asked for a sticky!

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