Seachem Alert Combo

Discussion in 'Cleaning and Maintenance' started by Billy T, Apr 19, 2018.

  1. Billy T

    Billy TValued MemberMember

    How accurate is the Seachem Alert Combo? Specifically Ammonia? I’m very low on Ammonia liquid tester from my API freshwater master test kit, everything else there is plenty, so if accurate enough I could save a little bit, but if not I’ll just get the kit. Could use extra test tubes although I discovered a 6 pack of glitter holders from michaels for $1.99 works awesome
  2. 123

    123Valued MemberMember

    I was wondering the same about the Seachem Alert combo. I’m thinking of getting it.
  3. OP
    Billy T

    Billy TValued MemberMember

    This was at pet smart. I left there and tried Petco and they had the api liquid ammonia test kit with 1 test tube 3 dollars cheaper, so I went with it. But if the alert combo is very accurate would be nice to have no surprises
  4. Zoomo

    ZoomoWell Known MemberMember

    I have one on each of my bettas tanks and it seems to match when I do my water tests, so I use the
    Alert things in the tank as just extra added comfort that I do not have any ammonia in my tank. I do test less than I would without it though. I also use strips on the fly when I am too lazy to pull out the gazillion bottles and test tubes. I find the test strips as accurate so I do not know why all the hate on them.
  5. bitseriously

    bitseriouslyWell Known MemberMember

    The alert badge only indicates free ammonia, whereas all other liquid tests and test strips record total ammonia.
    Total ammonia includes free or un-ionized ammonia, and ionized ammonia (NH3 and NH4+ respectively).
    The free ammonia is well tolerated by fish, but the ionized form is quite toxic.
    The amount of each in your tank depends largely on pH. At low pH, most ammo is in the free un-ionized form, whereas at higher pH, enough is converted to be harmful to fish (still a small overall proportion, but any of it is bad).
    In other words, if you were to measure total ammonia and get a significant reading in a low-pH tank, a) the badge would not indicate it, and b) the amount of total nitrogen that is the harmful form would be very low.
    But, at higher pH, any total ammonia you record would include harmful amounts of free ammonia.
    "What are the high and low thresholds for pH to drive these changes?" you ask...
    (the chart below is from the Nutrafin ammonia test kit instruction booklet, can be found by googling "Nutrafin ammonia test chart").

    There are a few threads on FL that discuss this also, try searching all of FL for "seachem alert badge".