Phosphate problems often plague aquarium keepers and cause all sorts of problems by fueling algae growth. The actual phosphate levels are often undetectable by titration-based test kits, causing most aquarists to think the issues lies elsewhere, such as in the lights or some other source. Unfortunately, the reef keeper spends countless amounts of money trying to get rid of the algae, when all that could have been avoided with a quality digital tester that reads PO4 levels down to the 0.01 ppm level. Sure, these phosphate testers aren’t exactly cheap, getting into the mid $100’s, but purchasing one of these can save all the money you’d spend trying to track down the algae growing culprit. Changing light bulbs, switching to a new salt, and buying media reactors that constantly need replenishing all eat into the aquarium budget, and depending on your situation, none may solve the problem. All this said, you don’t have to run out and buy a phosphate meter. Try to find a friend that has one, or maybe split the costs for one unit among several hobbyists.