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Is This Thing Any Good?


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Saw this while looking for a new test kit.. I'm pretty sure this is a waste of 20 good dollars.

http://cgi.ebay.com/PH-Tester-Swimming-Pool-Spa-Water-Chlorine-Water-Test-/180376815935?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item29ff4bc93f#ht_3306wt_935

I'm looking for an alternative to the color based test since I have difficulty matching the colors (thanks to Protanopia). So if anyone knows I'm all ears (or eyes)

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Things we learned in kindergarten:

* If it sounds too good to be true, it is.

* You get what you pay for.

It reads chlorine to "above 3 ppm". What kind of chlorine: free? combined? What is your normal chlorine level now? If mine were to test at 0.2 ppm I would scramble for the bleach bottles. I run my pool at between 3 and 5 ppm and have to be able to test for those levels. This device would not be useful to me.

Moreover, electronic testers require frequent calibration. Will they include standardizing solutions? Or do you have to make your own? For 20 bucks?

Um . . .

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Saw this while looking for a new test kit.. I'm pretty sure this is a waste of 20 good dollars.

http://cgi.ebay.com/...f#ht_3306wt_935

I'm looking for an alternative to the color based test since I have difficulty matching the colors (thanks to Protanopia). So if anyone knows I'm all ears (or eyes)

"Is This Thing Any Good?"

In a word, "NO"

also, it ships from Hong Kong which, to me, is a red flag when buying in eBay. Second red flag is there there are NO other pH/ORP meters (ORP is what the chlorine tester has to be because a direct reading chlorine electrode is THOUSANDS of dollars!!!!!!!!!!!!) that sell for $20! It's pretty hard to find one for under $100 and it's impossible to find a GOOD one for under a couple of hundred.

I downloaded the instruction manual for the unit and it looks pretty bogus to me, especially the part about using sandpaper on the electrodes! ( I have quite a bit of experience with electronic water testers and have NEVER seen an electrode that you needed to sandpaper AND THEN WASH IN SOAPY WATER!).

http://chlormeter.com/product_en.html (html format, but not the full instructions)

http://www.harald-ny...dk/pdf/1171.doc (full instructions in word doc format)

Also interesting that the battery is only used for the chlorine test and not the pH test. Not sure what this meter is actually measuring but I have serious doubts that it actually is measuring either pH or chlorine!

There are pH and ORP meters that are decent but expect to spend at least $200-$300 for a worthwhile one ( and that does not include calibration solutions and replacement electrodes, which are also needed.)

Also, for testing chlorine use an FAS-DPD test which is a titration (drop count) test that changes from red to colorless and can be read by color blind people with ease! To quote from the Taylor webpage about the test:

"It is also a boon to the six to eight percent of the population with red-green deficiencies in their color vision (mainly men)."

http://www.taylortec...SP?ContentID=11(shows the color change)

pH is trickier, many color blind people have difficulty with this test but a GOOD test kit (such as the Taylor K-2006 which also has the FAS-DPD test) makes it easier since the color changes are more distinct and the color values more vibrant and not pastel, like the inexpensive kits.

http://www.taylortec...058_500x375.jpg (K-2006 comparator)

http://www.taylortec...1_6_500x375.jpg(another Taylor comparator for pH, from the inexpensive K-1000, pH on right. about the same price at the "cheapie" kit below)

http://z.about.com/d...utstepfilll.jpg ("cheapie" test kit comparator, pH on right)

If not, then I would look to invest in a stand alone pH meter, calibration liquids, and spare electrodes. Expect to spend at least $200 or more for everything you need (and the electrodes and calibration solutions are consumables and need to be replaced on a regular basis!)

The other common swimming pool tests for TA and CH usually have distinct enough color changes for color blind individuals to be able to determine the endpoints (especially if you do the test with a normal color sighted person the first few times to learn the end point color change)

http://www.taylortec...SP?ContentID=35 (shows the color changes)

and the CYA test is a turbidity (cloudiness) test that should present no problems.

http://www.taylortec...SP?ContentID=44 (shows the 'disappearing black dot")

The Taylor K-2006 does all of these tests and is the kit I would recommend for you. Do NOT get the K-2005 or any other DPD test kit, You will not be able to read the chlorine test (very close shades of red). An OTO test (shades of yellow) is only going to give you total chlorine and is very limited. You can use it as a quick daily check to determine if you have chlorine present or not but it is not suitable for testing for free chlorine/combined chlorine, which is what you should be testing for. You will NEED an FAS-DPD chlorine test.

Hope this helps.

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