Pools are a wonderful place for relaxation, fun or exercise. In order to enjoy those activities, you want to make sure that your pool water is safe and clean. The greatest way to do that is getting the best pool test kit which will show you key information about the cleanliness and chemical balance of your water.
In order to get the best pool test strips, you want to ensure that you are getting a high quality product. With pool test kits, that involves considering the ease of use, the accuracy of the results, the design and the durability too, among other factors.
Here we will go through all that key information to give you the confidence to make the perfect choice. We have also completed pool test kit reviews to show you the best products on the market. After reading this guide, you’re going to be able to pick the perfect products for you.
How To Choose The Best Pool Test Kit – Buying Guide
Ease of use
When it comes to buying any piece of equipment, you should always be focused on the ease of use. The easier something is to use, the easier your life will be. When you come to choose the best pool test kit, you need to know a little about the different types of pool test kit out there.
Test strips are the most common and popular pool test kit. They are the easiest to use. Test strips are placed in the water and then change color. You can get them in bulk, usually coming in packages of fifty. Once you use one, you throw it away.
They are among the most inaccurate, as you are comparing the color to a color spectrum. Digital test strip readers add some accuracy to test strips. They are reasonably affordable and mean that you do not have to make the comparison in color.
Wet chemical kits give a more accurate and detailed reading by using a color compactor block to filter the water from your pool. OTO kits are the most affordable. They test for the total chlorine in the pool. They do not tell you how much sanitizer you need in your pool. DPD kits chow your free chlorine and other chemicals in your pool. They are a lot more accurate and extensive than pool test strips, but they take more time and effort to use.
If you have a small and manageable pool, then test strips will be fine. They are easy to use and quick. If you need more detailed readings, then you will need a wet chemical kit, even though it will take up more of your time.
It’s important to know how to use a pool test kit to check water quality in order to know that you are looking at and it’s also important to know you basic pool chemistry too in order to have full confidence in what you are doing.
Depending on the setup you have, you may be okay with basic reading. If you have a small hot tub, then you might not need to have the most accurate reading, and a test strip will be fine. If you have a large outdoor pool with needs to be balanced exactly, then you will be better off with a more accurate tester.
Consistency of results
If your pool test kits not accurate or consistent, then you can have a lot of problems. If you cannot accurately track problems as they begin to occur, then you may miss them. You could have an imbalance in chemicals, or something growing in your pool, but if you get an inconsistent result, then you may not know that there is an imbalance. You need to weigh up the cost of a test kit, but if you have spent a lot of money on your pool, then spending a little more on a test kit can ket you protected.
Suitability of testing method
You need to ensure that your testing method is suitable. Is the pool test kit suitable for your pool? You do not want to have the most expensive pool test kit in the world and be testing a kiddie pool. At the same time, you do not want to be using the most basic pool test strips for a large indoor pool which is open to the public. When you test your pool, you should get results which you can understand.
The design of the kit should be appropriate for being close to the water, and for your pool in general. When you test your pool, there should be minimal parts next to the water. The less moving parts near the water, the less chance there is of something contaminating the water. The pool test kit should also be designed to hold together. You do not want any brittle parts coming off and falling into the water.
We want everything to be durable, and a pool test kit is no exception. You are going to be using your pool test kit regularly. At times you may be testing your pool every day. The pool test kit should be easy to use and should handle being used a lot.
The test kit should also be able to stand up to the water, as it will come into contact with the water regularly. If your pool needs constant attention and care, then your pool test kit will need to stand up to the wear and tear which will come along with it.
When you are buying your pool test kit, you should always check the availability. This may not seem important initially, but if you get used to a particular brand, then you may want to buy it again when the time comes to replace it.
If you are using a test kit which needs to be refilled, with either test strips, or other parts, then you need to ensure that these are regularly available when you need them. If you need to purchase refills regularly, then you should ensure that these refills are constantly in stock, or your purchase could be useless.
If you buy your test kit from a manufacturer who also manufactures specialized pool chemicals, then you may get biased results. Companies are in business to make money, and pool chemical manufacturers are in the business to sell chemicals.
If they can manufacture pool test kits too, then they may find a way to make the kit more biased towards their chemicals. We are not saying that all manufacturers would do this, but if you buy your pool test kit from an independent manufacturer, you can be assured that your test kit is not going to be biased in any way.
Whenever we come to buy anything, we always have value for money in mind. We always want the best deal, and the test kits on our list deliver that value to you. If you go for the cheapest pool test kit on the market, then you may not get the best kit in the world, in fact, you might get a test kit which is not going to work very well.
Your pool test kit is an invaluable piece of kit for keeping your pool in working order, but that does not mean you have to spend an enormous amount of money either. Find a pool test kit which works and do not be afraid to spend a little on it.
Q: How To Use A Pool Test Kit?
A: The best advice we can give is to follow the instructions which come with your pool kit. If you have strips, then you should dip them in the water. If you have vials to collect water in, then fill the vials to the correct line. You should wait long enough for the strips or water to change color and then act accordingly.
Q: How Often Should I Test My Pool?
A: It’s important to know how to clean and maintain your above ground pool or in-ground pool, with chemicals being an important part of that. You will need to check the levels of your chemicals at different times and you should be checking daily for the pH and chlorine levels. Every week, you should check the temperature and alkalinity.
Once a month, you should check the stabilizer level and calcium hardness. If you miss one of the daily tests, then it is not too big of a deal, as long as you check it the next day, but a weekly or monthly test can be more costly. If you do miss the test, then try and do it the next day. If you wait for a week or a month, then you could have a big problem.
We like to have a chart in our house which has the schedule on it. After testing, we mark it off on the chart, so we know it is done. If we miss a test, then it is easy to catch. One tip we would give is to check more after anything which is out of the ordinary. For example, if you have a heavy downpour and were not able to get your pool cover on, you should test the levels of your pool.
As well as the chemical levels, you also need to unsure you are regularly using a pool cleaner and it’s also important to know why you should cover your swimming pool or a hot tub as a great pool cover will not only reduce cleaning but it will help to keep the chemicals in balance too.
They aren’t the only things to consider either as the right chemicals or cleaner won’t clear anything on the surface and that is what a pool skimmer is used for. A great pool skimmer will clear bugs and debris but you will also need to know how to clean tiles at the swimming pool waterline.
Q: What Are The Chemicals In My Swimming Pool?
A: Before you use a pool test kit, you should know a little about the chemicals in your pool. As long as you keep these chemicals balanced, you can keep your pool in great working order. Sodium bicarbonate is used to boost the level of alkalinity in your pool.
Calcium hardener boosts the calcium levels. Bromine is used to stabilize the pH level and acidity in your pool, ensuring that your pool does not become too acidic. Chlorine helps to chlorinate your pool and kill bacteria and it’s good to know how to protect your hair from the chlorine.
Q: What Are The Most Common Types Of Swimming Pool Test Kits?
A: Pool test strips are the most common kit. They are cheap, easy to use, and compact. You can buy a container of test strips and leave them by the pool. When you need to use one, you take a strip, dip it into the pool, and compare it with the color chart. They are the easiest pool kits to use and the cheapest. They are also the test kits which require you to do the work. You need to make a comparison and decisions.
You can also find test kits which do the work for you. You need to add some water to the kit, and the test kit will examine the water for you. The kit will then give you some detailed information about how your pool is doing. These test kits are more expensive, but they give you a lot more information and allow you to take better care of your pool.
Q: Who Will Take The Tests?
A: You may think that it does not matter who is taking the test, but depending on the type of test used, the results can vary from individual to individual. With a colorimetric test, the results are compared to a color spectrum. When we look at colors, our perceptions can be wildly different.
One person may see colors lighter, while another may see colors darker. If two people take the same test strip and dip it in the pool, the results may differ, and different chemicals may be added. This can cause a lot of confusion. Colorimetric tests are better when one person is doing the testing.
Photometric tests are better when more than one person is testing the water. These tests are not affected by the light or any other conditions. You could have multiple people testing the water on multiple days, and the results will always be consistent.
Q: What Do I Need To Test?
A: At the most basic level, you should find a test kit which can test your total chlorine, free chlorine, pH level, total alkalinity, Cyanuric acid, and calcium hardness. Some test kits may test less than this, while some may test more. Depending on the size of your pool, and the usage, you could go in either direction. If you want to go all out, then a high-end photometric kit will take care of the most expensive pool.
Q: What Is The Accessibility Of Reagents?
A: When you buy your kit, you want to have ready access to reagents. You may prefer to deal with local agents, in which case you will need to ensure that they keep a stock or reagents in store. If you want to order online, then you should also make sure that there is a supply for you to purchase.
Q: Does My State Have Any Legal Regulations?
A: Some states (and regions in other countries) will have regulations about pool test kits. When you come to buy your pool test kit, you should make sure to first check with your local authorities to see if you need to follow any guidelines when you come to purchase your kit. Some states may have different rules, and there may be pool test kit specifications.
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It’s important to know your facts about pools, spas, swimming and safety as you want to be able to enjoy yourself in a clean and healthy pool. Once you know everything is safe, then you can cast your mind to more fun activities such as using the likes of pool floats and pool slides.
If you take care of your pool, it will last for a long time. A pool with a chemical imbalance can damage your pool, its pump as well as the heater system. The material of your pool can be damaged too, but worse than that, the water can be unsafe which is going to especially affect children.
A great pool test kit will help to keep your pool safe and the best kits will allow you to check this in a very small amount of time and give you reassurances that it is safe. Once you have that reassurance then you can enjoy your pool with peace of mind.
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