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on 29 May 2017
The only freshwater master kit i will use. Test strips i never used due to there poor accuracy. There are some other brands like Seachem for example that do great water testing products but much more expensive to. If you want good accuracy for a reasonable price that will last a reasonably long time then overall value and quality is definitely given to the API Freshwater Master Kit.

You can perform the following tests with this kit:
- pH - low range
- pH - high range
- Ammonia
- Nitrite
- Nitrate

Comes with easy to follow instructions and colour chart. The most annoying are the test tubes, i always end up breaking them and having to buy spares, i also hate they are push caps and not screw on as you have to keep your thumb on top of the cap when shaking as it tends to leak out otherwise, i also wish the case layout was better as well as it's a bit annoying and fiddly specially the position of the test tubes. I also purchased the API liquid Kh and Gh kit to make it a true master test kit. I think they should be included as standard as this is called a master test kit after all.

Make sure you shake the plastic liquid bottles very well before using, i shake longer than the instructions state to ensure it's mixed well, specially the nitrate bottle as it's very thick formula and prone to giving inaccurate readings simply because the bottle was not shaked enough before using, so take note shake and shake again.

I recommend this kit for any fish keeper whether you are newbie or advanced user, this kit is suitable for most peoples needs. I tend to only test frequently when cycling a tank and for approx 6 months after cycling complete whilst beneficial bacteria still colonizes in the filter, i don't test often from then on as i find observing the tank and fish can give you good indicators of problems, but nonetheless still a great kit to have to hand for as and when needed.

Check readings in natural daylight if possible as can sometimes be hard to judge colour of tested water against colour chart.

Best kit for overall price accuracy and price. Highly recommend.


- Check expiry date is well in to the future on case when it arrives as they last ages.

- I find placing the colour chart up against a window with natural daylight (but not direct sunlight) and then placing the tube by the side of the test i'm testing enables me personally to take a better reading.

- Another way some people find easier is to place the colour chart down flat on a surface in a room with natural daylight, then remove cap from test tube and then place the testing tube on top of the colour chart and test they are testing for, then look straight down the test tube and compare colour.

- Some people complain of the colour in the test tube changing over time and not sure which reading was correct, this will happen hence why it's important to follow instructions. If for example you are told to compare the test tube with colour chart after 5 minutes, then ensure you compare after 5 minutes and not for example 10 minutes, as overtime the colour will continue to change and people then get confused which is the correct reading.

- Shake the Nitrate bottles as it's very thick formula and prone to giving people false readings, read the instructions very carefully, a number of people do the Nitrate test wrong and get inconsistent inaccurate readings. You must shake this bottle excessively. I always shake the bottles longer than the instructions state to ensure they've been shaken enough, if you don't shake them enough you can end up with inaccurate false readings.
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on 8 June 2014
When I first got interested in aquaculture I use a very similar product by another well known manufacturer. I found their small kit to be very good and so eventually graduated to their "Master" test kit. I found the results from some of these tests to be very difficult to interpret as the colours produced by the reagents were often too similar to be able to determine an accurate reading and so, when I needed a buy a replacement kit, thought I would try APIs offering.

The bottles actually have the number of drops required printed on them so the dosage doesn't have to be looked up in a booklet every time. The bottles are also designed with a unique (at least I've never seen this before) child proof cap where a small locking collar has to be held firm with a thumb before the cap will unscrew. One of the better child-proof designs in that adults can actually open them very easily!

Unlike other brands where only a loose fitting test tube cap is provided, the API test tube caps are a secure fit - essential when shaking a corrosive or irritant test solution for up to a minute. Just as important, the test tubes are easy to rinse without leaving the residue on the glass that I have found with other test kits.

The tests either provide instant results or after a 5 minute "developing" period. This means that tests are easier and quicker to undertake compared with other manufacturer's kits where the waiting time for tests varies from instant, to 2, 5 or 20 minutes. The resulting colour changes are very easy to compare against the test chart provided.

All in all, an easy to use and well designed kit at a competitive price.
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on 24 January 2016
This kit is very easy to use with good instructions for all tests. It is well presented in its own plastic top and base. The lid is a bit difficult to replace once you have the instructions to fit in as well, but you could store these separately if you don't think you will lose them.

It gives you very good details of what the results mean and what to do if they are off the scale and has its own waterproof colour chart to check results against.

The only thing which lost it a star is the packaging it arrived in, it was only in a small jiffy bag which was quite battered when it arrived (Tenerife) and I was sure the plastic lid would have been cracked, but luckily it wasn't. It should have been in a small box as there are 4 glass test tubes inside too. Also the postage was nearly as costly as the kit itself which wasn't good, but if you can get them in the UK you won't be bothered by this point.
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on 16 August 2017
Amazing product really helped me through my cycling in my tank for first time and not needing to get water tested at local fish place regularly which was a pain. So will always keep it at hand for my weekly water checks and if fish look out of sorts.
Only little moan would be that colour can be a little between two colours on chart sometimes which can be hard if your needing a clear number. Apart from that small moan its perfect and I will keep using it !
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on 22 January 2016
I went for this all in one test kit as it seemed economical in the long run... so far, having set up a new tank, I've used the ammonia and nitrite tests a lot more than anything else and upwards of 30 times... there still seems to be plenty left in the bottles. In terms of accuracy, they seem to give the same reading as at the "fish shop" which is good enough for me.... oh and they are very easy to use - add water - a few drops and then shake and wait for the result. The test strips may make life easier - this is a lot cheaper, and not exactly taxing as part of a routine ish water change.
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on 4 March 2018
at first glance it seems a little expensive compared to some of the other kits, but I have to say it is well worth the money.
It is easy to use, the instructions are clear and concise and accurate.
I took a sample of my tank water to the local aquarium suppliers for analysis and the results matched my own findings.
It is far more accurate than the strips you can buy, and it is claimed to be around 80 tests per kit...
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on 28 February 2018
Works very well for monitoring your aquarium water parameters as it cycles, and afterwards. Very important for the health of your aquatic lifeforms.

It's very important to read the instructions very carefully and follow them, as some complaints particularly about the nitrate test are due to not following the instructions.

To make best use of this test kit you really need to understand the Nitrogen Cycle - don't Google it, DuckDuckGo it!

Can't beat this price.
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on 27 October 2016
Brought this to check my water quality. This is much better I find than the strips as it's more precise. It's easy, clear and straightforward instructions. Excellent for when your starting out or trying to keep your fish in a happy healthy environment. Should last a while and will definitely buy again. It arrived in perfect condition. Slight mishap on delivering but to owners credit he resolved my issue straight away.
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on 29 January 2016
Firstly I wouldn't buy a syringe, I've filled the tubes pretty easy just dipping them into the tank.

Also, if you have children you will already have endless amounts of calpol syringes which measure 5ml - it would be easier to fill using a smaller ended tube though.

Back to the tests, I think they are good but you will likely run out of some tests before others so be prepared to buy them seperatly.., I'm using a lot of the ammonia (2 bottles) at the moment as its a new tank.

The bottles look pretty child safe, but please make sure they are not leaking when you put the lid back on cause it will come down the bottle.

I say this as the nitrate test bottles come with some serious health warnings, for example suspected genetic defects..., this isn't making me want to use it much.

I think due to this I'll like start using the test strips.
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on 5 September 2015
I'm new to fish keeping and after losing a few, I bought a test kit so I didn't have to go to the local shop all the time. I'm sure they were getting sick of me. Anyway, the test is straight forward to use, takes me about 10 minutes and since using it, I've lost no fish, thank god.

I decided to go with API after virtually every website on the internet recommended it. I too now recommend it.

I've been testing every other day for three weeks and the bottles still feel pretty full, so expect out to last for months and months, particularly when I stop testing as often.

The kit comes with a laminated colour chart which I find can often be difficult to tell the difference between the colours, but it's good enough to get the job done.

I'll definitely be buying this again when it runs out
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