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Thread: Digital Water Test Meters

  1. #11
    Jumbo HenryC's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
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    Orlando, FL
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    589
    Quote Originally Posted by joe bauer
    the pH meter i purchased with my salt meter is not as good. it takes too long to take a reading and has to be calibrated more often than the salt meter. i gave the pH meter away, it is quicker to use the test tube and drops test.
    I agree that the pH meter does take a bit longer. I normally hold the pH meter in the water for a minute before the reading finally stabilizes. For most of us guys though, that is much better than the drop type pH test. Most guys cannot correctly compare the test sample with the pH color charts. It is much quicker for me to use the meter versus preparing the drop type test and then getting my wife to read it correctly

  2. #12
    Oyagoi koiczar's Avatar
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    Sep 2005
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    2,352
    Henry

    I can relate to that. And how about the people that don't realize they're partially color blind!!HaHa!
    I bet they have fun selecting fish too!LOL

    I haven't checked my Ph for months. It just never seems to change - tap is 8.2 and pond is 7.8. I know, I'm a bad boy - I really should do it more often along with other parameters. I use test strips with 5 different test pads and I validate those with the drop-type kits. Interesting enough, It tells me when the drops are going south.

  3. #13
    Tategoi
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Fremont, CA
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    367
    Meters are convenient and usually more accurate. The accuracy isnít always valuable and all meters as well as standard test kits need routine calibration to give the results the manufacturer specifies. A good pH meter is self-calibrating and more accurate than strips or drops. (0.02pH) I use one but it's not necessary. It does need annual calibrating but that's easy.

    Donít buy meters that use expensive batteries or lack an automatic shut off so the batteries run down when you forget to turn the instrument off.

    YSI 85 Oxygen meter measures salt for me. It works fine.

    An oxygen meter owned by a club can serve to locate problems but won't be used often enough for an individual to benefit.

    I don't know of any ammonia sensors for single readings. I use a Hach multi-probe that will accept an ammonia sensor but it wouldn't have a practical value for the price of the sensor.

    I can see a value in owning a colorimeter (about $7-800 new) for various pond tests and for the calibration of meters and test kits but not worth it to the individual hobbyist. These tests can be done well enough with a good test kit. I recommend Lamotte for that. I have a Hach colorimeter and a Hach spectrometer. Both are much more accurate than a hobbyist needs unless they like to experiment. But they can be useful; most meters won't give the accuracy of a colorimeter or spectrophotometer but are preferable due to the ease of use and are plenty accurate for our use.

    An ORP meter can point out a pond that needs maintenance but, as with all meters it must be cleaned weekly to get a reliable reading.

    Test strips are fine when new. but they can loose their value unless they are handled carefully. The biggest problem is in humid atmospheres where constant opening for tests impacts the strips. They can be split among two or three people or transfer several at a time to the 'test bottle' and they will be fine.

    A TDS meter can also be used to monitor water quality and indicate the need for a water change.

    If you like meters good. Be certain to check their calibration routinely. If you like strips or drop tests, they are just as good for the average pond owner but buy a new kit annually.


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