NT Labs Aquarium Lab - Nitrate Test

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What is nitrate?

Nitrate is produced by the beneficial bacteria in the aquarium and filters as they breakdown the fish’s toxic waste products (ammonia and nitrite). Nitrate is not toxic to aquarium fish, but excessively high levels can affect their reproduction.

Why test for nitrate?

Nitrate is a plant nutrient. The more nitrate is present the greater the potential for plant growth. If insufficient plants are present then algae will begin to dominate in the aquarium. Aquariums with high levels of nitrate frequently have problems with algae and blanket weed.

What do I do if the nitrate level is wrong?

Maintenance of a zero level of nitrate in an aquarium is extremely difficult. Most domestic water supplies have a low level of nitrate. The key to maintenance of low nitrates is regular water changes to dilute the build up of nitrate. Also, increasing the higher plant life in the aquarium should use up nitrate. This will lower the amount of nitrate available to algae.

  • Q: Why do I run out of 1 reagent before the other(s)? A: We fill our test kit reagent bottles to a minimum amount before they are put through a vigorous QC regime. This means that the vast majority of bottles will in fact be overfilled by varying amounts meaning that the reagents may well run out at different rates but you should be able to carry out at least the number of tests stated on the packaging.

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