Editor's Choice - Our Favorite Freshwater Aquarium Test Kits

1. API Aquarium Test Kit

User Ratings: 85 1

API 34 First Impressions

"Take the read."

Having the key on the bottle is very helpful, it won't get lost. No issues so far, test strips work well. It is one small part of the overall aquarium ownership experience. Best price, best quality, fair accuracy and better than most brands, etc. You never want to wait too long and the tank crashes and has major problems. About my pic color difference of the water and the chart and about the bad reviews. The price is great for all these essential tests!

  • API Aquarium Test Kit
  • Contains one (1) API FRESHWATER MASTER TEST KIT 800-Test Freshwater Aquarium Water Master Test Kit, including 7 bottles of testing solutions, 1 color card and 4 glass tubes with cap
  • Helps monitor water quality and prevent invisible water problems that can be harmful to fish and cause fish loss
  • Accurately monitors 5 most vital water parameters levels in freshwater aquariums: pH, high range pH, ammonia, nitrite, nitrate
  • Designed for use in freshwater aquariums only
  • Use for weekly monitoring and when water or fish problems appear
  • Manufacture: Aquarium Pharmaceuticals
  • Product Dimensions: 9.13 x 3.5 x 4.63 inches; 1.15 Pounds
  • Editor's Impressions Of The API 34
  • Test Accuracy
  • Quality
  • Value For Money
  • Affordability

API 34 Final Thoughts

"YES, it's accurate."

I have not found that to be true for myself. Quantity of strips seems very good. It does'not' have the same accuracy but it’s very close. The nitrate test is a little finicky as most users will agree. Accurate results and much much cheaper than buying from a pet chain. I wish there were a simpler accurate test for it. My tap water actually was really green and was a very close match to the 1.

Overall Score
4.8


(12611 Points)

Peoples Choice - Other Highly Rated Freshwater Aquarium Test Kits

2. API Test Strips, for Variety of Water Parameters, Monitor Aquarium Water Quality and Help Prevent In...

User Ratings: 74 3

API 33G First Impressions

"Maybe I have bad bottle."

If you're looking for a quick-hit on a range of water quality these are the answer. If this review was helpful, please click the helpful button! Well I found out why they were gulping so bad. While using these weirder chemicals, it worries me a little bit. You mostly find them using API also. To test it, I bought a 5 pack of 5 site test strips from Petco. But if it's wrong at least I was proactive about it.

  • API Test Strips, for Variety of Water Parameters, Monitor Aquarium Water Quality and Help Prevent Invisible Water Problems That can be Harmful to Fish, Use Weekly and When Problems Appear
  • Contains one (1) API 5-IN-1 TEST STRIPS Freshwater and Saltwater Aquarium Test Strips 25-Count Box
  • Monitors levels of pH, nitrite, nitrate carbonate and general water hardness in freshwater and saltwater aquariums
  • Dip test strips into aquarium water and check colors for fast and accurate results
  • Helps prevent invisible water problems that can be harmful to fish and cause fish loss
  • Use for weekly monitoring and when water or fish problems appear
  • Manufacture: Mars Fishcare Inc.
  • Product Dimensions: 3.5 x 1.75 x 6.5 inches; 3.36 Ounces
  • Editor's Impressions Of The API 33G
  • Test Accuracy
  • Quality
  • Value For Money
  • Affordability

API 33G Final Thoughts

"I disagree."

Having the key on the bottle is very helpful, it won't get lost. If you want accurate pH get the API liquid test that includes pH and high pH. This test kit is easy to use and the results are easy to read. I've already lost one test tube cap, most likely due to my cats playing with them. If this review was helpful, please click the helpful button! Besides these few flaws I have to say it's a great starter kit. This spreads out the 6 month expiration date after opening.

Overall Score
4.5


(6938 Points)

3. API TEST KIT, Different styles available, Monitors water quality and helps prevent invisible problem...

User Ratings: 77 3

API LR8600 First Impressions

"Very easy to use."

Some of the readings develop better than others. These strips work very well and I have had consistent results with them. And if it was, please click on the helpful button below. My tap water actually was really green and was a very close match to the 1. Best price, best quality, fair accuracy and better than most brands, etc. It is one small part of the overall aquarium ownership experience. Before, I brought water into a pet store, but kept seeing no signs of improvement.

  • API TEST KIT, Different styles available, Monitors water quality and helps prevent invisible problems that can be harmful to fish, Fast, easy and accurate, Use weekly and when problems appear
  • Contains one (1) API AMMONIA 130-Test Freshwater and Saltwater Aquarium Water Test Kit, including 2 bottles of testing solution, 2 color cards and 1 glass test tube with cap
  • Monitors water quality and prevents invisible water problems that can be harmful to fish
  • Monitors water quality and prevents invisible water problems that can be harmful to fish
  • Works instantly to make aquarium water safe for fish
  • Dose several times a week when starting a new aquarium then weekly or when problem arise
  • Manufacture: Aquarium Pharmaceuticals
  • Product Dimensions: 2.75 x 1.63 x 5.13 inches; 4.8 Ounces
  • Editor's Impressions Of The API LR8600
  • Test Accuracy
  • Quality
  • Value For Money
  • Affordability

API LR8600 Final Thoughts

"I really enjoy this kit."

Price is good for the quantity and functionality of the tester strips. Quantity of strips seems very good. I wouldn't call this a master kit but a great start. So I got these to try and I love them. 6 showing the test strip as an accurate reading. I get a consistent reading every time, retests included. The test strips work as advertised.

Overall Score
4.6


(4238 Points)

4. Tetra EasyStrips 6-in-1 Aquarium Test Strips for Fresh/Salt Water

User Ratings: 78 2

Tetra 19543 First Impressions

"00 becomes 40."

Every test I do takes just a few drops. Overall, I am very happy with this kit. This kit is extremely accurate and very well designed for convenient use and storage. 6 showing the test strip as an accurate reading. First and second test have a little change which was expected. Their Whisper 1-5 filter cartridges have skyrocketed in price and become a scarcity. Very good instructions and a comparison color chart.

  • Tetra EasyStrips 6-in-1 Aquarium Test Strips for Fresh/Salt Water
  • COMPLETE TESTING Regularly testing your water levels is critical to the success of your aquarium
  • 6 DIFFERENT TESTS WITH 1 STRIP Just one test monitors nitrates nitrites water hardness chlorine alkalinity and pH levels
  • VERSATILE Can be used in both freshwater and saltwater aquariums
  • CONVENIENT Just dip into water wait 60 seconds and read results
  • USAGE Use weekly to monitor aquarium water after water changes or when adding new fish
  • Age Range Description: All Life Stages
  • Manufacture: Tetra
  • Product Dimensions: 1.81 x 1.81 x 3.75 inches; 1.6 Ounces
  • Editor's Impressions Of The Tetra 19543
  • Test Accuracy
  • Quality
  • Value For Money
  • Affordability

Tetra 19543 Final Thoughts

"So read the instructions."

If you're out for speed, but with less accuracy get the dip tests. If you keep freshwater fish, you will need this test kit. Just be careful, after all these are chemicals. Every test I do takes just a few drops. I tested the water and the nitrates and the ph were pretty high still. I'm the test strip came in handy it saved all of my fish. I even got an extra 32 test strips as an added bonus.

Overall Score
4.6


(3788 Points)

Honorable Mentions - More Top Selling Freshwater Aquarium Test Kits

5. Seachem Stability Fish Tank Stabilizer - For Freshwater and Marine Aquariums 250ml

User Ratings: 85 2

Seachem 116012607 First Impressions

"He perked right up."

I started wearing gloves when I use the kit. But, I will continue to order Tetra's 6 in 1 until someone makes a better test strip. This is no different so I wouldn't knock this product for that. These have worked to keep my fish safe and healthy. The price is great for all these essential tests! Overall, I am very happy with this kit. Will definitely buy again, if we ever run out!

  • Seachem Stability Fish Tank Stabilizer - For Freshwater and Marine Aquariums 250ml
  • TANK STABILIZATION: Seachem Stability will rapidly and safely establish the aquarium biofilter in freshwater and marine systems, thereby preventing the #1 cause of fish death: "new tank syndrome".
  • TREATMENT: Stability is formulated specifically for the aquarium and contains a synergistic blend of aerobic, anaerobic, and facultative bacteria which facilitate the breakdown of waste organics, ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate.
  • BACTERIA GROWTH: The necessary conditions for the growth of Stability's bacterial strains encompass a very broad range. When other bacteria begin to die off (usually from high organic loads caused by the unknown death of an organism), Stability simply becomes more effective.
  • USE: Shake Seachem Stability well before use and turn off UV/ozone filter. Use 1 capful (5 mL) for each 40 L (10 US gallons) on the first day with a new aquarium. Then use 1 capful for each 80 L (20 US gallons) daily for 7 days. Fish and other aquatic species may be introduced at any time as long as the dosage is maintained for 7 days.
  • SAFE: The bacteria employed by Stability are non-sulfur fixing and will not produce toxic hydrogen sulfide. Stability is completely harmless to all aquatic organisms as well as aquatic plants, thus there is no danger of overuse.
  • Manufacture: Seachem Laboratories, Inc.
  • Item Weight: 10.2 ounces
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1.8 x 1.2 inches
  • Editor's Impressions Of The Seachem 116012607
  • Test Accuracy
  • Quality
  • Value For Money
  • Affordability

Seachem 116012607 Final Thoughts

"Simple and easy to use."

To test it, I bought a 5 pack of 5 site test strips from Petco. Takes about 5 minutes to check everything. This spreads out the 6 month expiration date after opening. I tested the water and the nitrates and the ph were pretty high still. Also, I'd avoid Tetra's strips to be honest- the reviews speak for themselves. I was having trouble keeping my fish tank water looking good. I have not had any problem whatsoever.

Overall Score
4.7


(1018 Points)

6. Qguai 9 in 1 Aquarium Test Strips, Water Test Strips for Saltwater Freshwater Pond Pool Spa, Test pH...

User Ratings: 50 16

Qguai First Impressions

"These are great!"

It's really accurate and makes me feel like I'm a scientist while doing it. If you keep freshwater fish, you will need this test kit. But if it's wrong at least I was proactive about it. Before, I brought water into a pet store, but kept seeing no signs of improvement. 6 showing the test strip as an accurate reading. I cut each strip down the middle so that I have even more tests. But it turns out that is not the case.

  • Qguai 9 in 1 Aquarium Test Strips, Water Test Strips for Saltwater Freshwater Pond Pool Spa, Test pH, Nitrate, Nitrite, Carbonate, Chlorine, Alkalinity, Hardness, Fast and Accurate,50-Strips
  • 9 in 1 Aquarium Test strips -pH, Nitrate, Nitrite, Carbonate, Chlorine, Alkalinity, Iron, Copper,Hardness in salt water fresh water pond reef aquarium, 50 count in 1 bottle.
  • Extremely easy to use test strips - Simply dip this freshwater saltwater test strips into water and compare it to the chart on bottle.convenient and get results in seconds.
  • Wide application -it can be used to test the levels of all sorts of products such as pond pool saltwater freshwater aquarium.
  • Validity period: Placed it dry at 2 C ~ 30 C to protect from light, and the validity period is 24 months. Pls notice the date on the bottle and the label is the production date, Lot: 2019082006 means it is produced on 08/20/2019, batch 6, so the expiratios date is 2 years after this day.
  • Any problem, just contact us and we will do our best to help.
  • Manufacture: Qguai
  • Editor's Impressions Of The Qguai
  • Test Accuracy
  • Quality
  • Value For Money
  • Affordability

Qguai Final Thoughts

"Love the convenience."

Very easy to use and very easy to read test strips. The nitrate test is a little finicky as most users will agree. Tank lids, water additives and more have seen the same effect. I even got an extra 32 test strips as an added bonus. It helps get you in the ballpark with your water perimeters. I mean some people would never do a water test at all. Tank lids, water additives and more have seen the same effect.

Overall Score
3.8


(746 Points)

7. Tetra EasyStrips 25 Count, Ammonia Test Strips For aquariums, Water Testing, 25-Strip, Model:19540

User Ratings: 70 4

Tetra 19540 First Impressions

"Two packages were inside."

This is essential for an accurate reading. No one brand is going to guarantee against this. A brand new aquarium will experience what is called a cycle. Strips were always stored in a sealed dry place. I have a 55 gallon tank with a few large goldfish. Some of the readings develop better than others. I have not found that to be true for myself.

  • Tetra EasyStrips 25 Count, Ammonia Test Strips For aquariums, Water Testing, 25-Strip, Model:19540
  • AMMONIA TESTING Regularly testing your water ammonia levels is critical to the success of your aquarium
  • VERSATILE Can be used in both freshwater and saltwater aquariums
  • CONVENIENT Just dip into water wait 10 seconds and read results
  • COMPATIBLE WITH TETRA MY aquarium APP Get instant water care product recommendations based on testing results
  • USAGE Use when setting up a new aquarium after water changes or as needed
  • Age Range Description: All Life Stages
  • Manufacture: Tetra
  • Product Dimensions: 5.94 x 5.94 x 11.75 inches; 0.8 Ounces
  • Editor's Impressions Of The Tetra 19540
  • Test Accuracy
  • Quality
  • Value For Money
  • Affordability

Tetra 19540 Final Thoughts

"Very easy to use."

If your lighting isn't right the colors will be very off. So this thing worked very well and gave a reading that made perfect sense. My water was good to go and soon after I for fish that are doing well! The test strips work as advertised. I set up a bunch of 20 gallon tanks for fry and stuff. If this review was helpful, please click the helpful button! Then put the cap on the test vial and invert it several times.

Overall Score
4.4


(709 Points)

8. Tetra EasyStrips Complete Aquarium Test Kit

User Ratings: 73 4

Tetra 19544 First Impressions

"Would buy again for sure!"

But after last night these are a must have for me. I mean some people would never do a water test at all. Before, I brought water into a pet store, but kept seeing no signs of improvement. Not really sure if there is a way to fix that though. It does'not' have the same accuracy but it’s very close. I would not use it solely for checking nitrate and nitrites. The rest of the test in the kit are much easier to use.

  • Tetra EasyStrips Complete Aquarium Test Kit
  • ALL-IN-ONE TESTING KIT: Everything you need to test your aquarium water.
  • 7 DIFFERENT TESTS WITH 1 STRIP: Just one test monitors ammonia, nitrates, nitrites, water hardness, chlorine, alkalinity and pH levels.
  • VERSATILE: Can be used in both freshwater and saltwater aquariums.
  • CONVENIENT: Just dip into water, wait 60 seconds and read results.
  • USAGE: Use weekly to monitor aquarium water, after water changes or when adding new fish.
  • Manufacture: Tetra
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 4 x 1.13 inches; 2.4 Ounces
  • Editor's Impressions Of The Tetra 19544
  • Test Accuracy
  • Quality
  • Value For Money
  • Affordability

Tetra 19544 Final Thoughts

"Great test kit."

If you're looking for a quick-hit on a range of water quality these are the answer. I like API products and find them the most accurate. Here's Tetra's strips if you're curious. Nice that so many things are tested with one dip in the water. It does not test ammonia but that's clear in the description and bottle. I wish there were a simpler accurate test for it. If you want accurate pH get the API liquid test that includes pH and high pH.

Overall Score
4.5


(680 Points)

9. capetsma 9 in 1 Aquarium Test Strips, Best Kit for Water Quality Testing for Freshwater Saltwater Po...

User Ratings: 50 16

capetsma First Impressions

"Just sayin'."

These strips are not to be trusted as a primary testing method for aquariums. Despite what it says on the chart, oxygen at 6mg will cause fish to start gulping. Besides these few flaws I have to say it's a great starter kit. If you're out for speed, but with less accuracy get the dip tests. I'm still not sure about the chlorine site. It's really accurate and makes me feel like I'm a scientist while doing it. You never want to wait too long and the tank crashes and has major problems.

  • capetsma 9 in 1 Aquarium Test Strips, Best Kit for Water Quality Testing for Freshwater Saltwater Pool and Pond - Test pH, Nitrate, Nitrite, Carbonate, Hardness, Chlorine, Alkalinity, Iron, Copper
  • 9 TESTS IN 1 COMPLETE KIT - Contains 1 capetsma 9-IN-1 TEST STRIPS Freshwater and Saltwater Aquarium Test Strips 50-Count in sealed Box. Monitors levels of pH ✓ Nitrate ✓ Nitrite✓ Carbonate ✓ General Hardness ( TDS ) ✓ Free Chlorine ✓ Total Alkalinity ✓ Iron ✓ Copper.
  • EASY & FAST RESULTS - Simply dip a strip into liquid and compare it to chart. Quickly get test results in seconds, No private laboratory testing or mail-in analysis required.
  • HELP MAINTAIN HEALTHY ENVIRONMENT IN YOUR TANK - prevent invisible water problems that can be harmful to fish and aquarium plants, Weekly test the water if water or fish problems appear, monitor your fish tank(aquarium), ensure your fishes to grow happier and healthier. Also it can help test the levels of all sorts of products such as drinking water, pools, spas, laundry, dishwasher, urine and more.
  • EXPIRATION DATE: 2C ~ 30C dry place and keep away from light, valid for 24 months. Pls notice the production date is on the label, below the color chart, LOT: 2019061401 means it is the first batch on 06/14/2019.
  • Use for weekly monitoring and when water or fish problems appear
  • Manufacture: Capetsma
  • Product Dimensions: 2.09 x 2.09 x 4.72 inches; 2.26 Ounces
  • Editor's Impressions Of The capetsma
  • Test Accuracy
  • Quality
  • Value For Money
  • Affordability

capetsma Final Thoughts

"Simple and easy to use."

I will now test my water periodically to make sure everything is ok. If you keep freshwater fish, you will need this test kit. Will definitely buy again, if we ever run out! This kit is extremely accurate and very well designed for convenient use and storage. My tap water actually was really green and was a very close match to the 1. Wasn't labeled that way in the descriptor. I even got an extra 32 test strips as an added bonus.

Overall Score
3.8


(613 Points)

10. API NITRITE TEST KIT 180-Test Freshwater and Saltwater Aquarium Test Kit

User Ratings: 81 2

API 26 First Impressions

"They work for me."

These strips are not to be trusted as a primary testing method for aquariums. The price is great for all these essential tests! I have not found that to be true for myself. It is one small part of the overall aquarium ownership experience. The nitrate test is a little finicky as most users will agree. The strips are able to monitor pH, nitrate, nitrite, water hardness. Having the key on the bottle is very helpful, it won't get lost.

  • API NITRITE TEST KIT 180-Test Freshwater and Saltwater Aquarium Test Kit
  • Contains one (1) API NITRITE TEST KIT 180-Test Freshwater and Saltwater Aquarium Test Kit, including 1 bottle of testing solution, 1 color card and 1 glass test tube with cap
  • Helps monitor nitrite and prevent invisible water problems that can be harmful to fish
  • Accurately detects high nitrate levels from 0-5 ppm
  • Prevents high levels of nitrite which inhibit fish respiration and suppress their immune systems
  • Use for weekly monitoring and when water or fish problems appear
  • Manufacture: Aquarium Pharmaceuticals
  • Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 2.38 x 5.13 inches; 2.4 Ounces
  • Editor's Impressions Of The API 26
  • Test Accuracy
  • Quality
  • Value For Money
  • Affordability

API 26 Final Thoughts

"Worth the money."

I have a freshwater tank that includes some delicate invertebrates. I have not had any problem whatsoever. But, I will continue to order Tetra's 6 in 1 until someone makes a better test strip. Nice that so many things are tested with one dip in the water. I have some pretty lousy water where I live. I would not use it solely for checking nitrate and nitrites. 6 and run a high pH you will see it could actually be 7.

Overall Score
4.7


(605 Points)

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