Aquatic Designs, Inc. Professional Aquarium Maintenance for Central Arkansas

How to read an aquarium test strip in plain English

If you’re an aquarium geek who finds joy in calling each one of your fish by it’s correct Latin name or gets a thrill out of classifying bacteria strains in the biological filtration process…. alphabetically…. you may want to just click on through.   We’re going to keep it simple.   I’m going to teach you how to read an aquarium test strip my way….. in plain English.   There’s no reason to buy a bunch of different expensive test kits or electronic meters to try to get an accurate of a reading as possible unless you are keeping a reef aquarium.  For a freshwater tank and a basic saltwater tank, everything you need to know can be read on a simple dip style test strip that can be obtained at most pet stores.  The test strips I use are by Tetra although there are others on the market.  Check yours to see what order the pads are arranged on the strip. ♦ We will start with the pad labeled pH.  In a really rough, non scientific explanation, pH is how much acid is in or not in the water.  Why does this matter?  Fish originate from different pools of […]

3 Most Common Aquarium Mistakes

I HEAR IT OVER -AND- OVER “I have an aquarium but it’s so much trouble that I’m ready to take it down.”  “My fish keep getting sick and dying, what am I doing wrong?”  “How do you get rid of all of this algae?” “My tank stays cloudy and dirty!  How do you keep yours so clean?“   Robotically, I start asking a list of questions to help identify the problem.   ♦ What size tank do you have? ♦ What type of filter? ♦ How long has it been set up and running? ♦ How many fish do you have? ♦ When did you add new fish? ♦ How much do you feed? ♦ How often do you do a water change? ♦ Have you tested the water?   I’m Larry and I’ve owned an aquarium maintenance company called Aquatic Designs for over 20 years.  In my time of maintaining customer’s aquariums, managing the fish department in a big box store and owning my own aquarium store, I feel like I have heard of or encountered just about every problem imaginable with an aquarium!   Almost always, when I am talking to someone who is having a problem with […]
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