What should I use to test my pool water?

PSC Ep. 88: What should I use to test my pool water?

In today’s episode of Poolside Chat, Rob and Matt tackle another common swimming pool question: 
What do you recommend I use to test my pool’s water?

A lot of pool owners will take their water into a pool store to get it checked out. I personally like to do it myself and make the adjustments. There’s two main options, it’s either the strips or drops. There are those digital testers but doesn’t seem to be as accurate yet, maybe the technology will improve.

I’ve used the strips but I am not a huge fan of them. They’re good for– If you just want to see if you have a good chlorine level but the other chemical, it’s just hard to tell when you’re– You have about 15 seconds when you dip the strip and check the colors. It’s hard to gauge between the different colors. I personally really don’t like them. I like the drops.

The drops test is the most accurate home method you can use, I prefer to use the Taylor K-2006 model. It’s a DPD FAS tester which means it can test higher chlorine levels as well as free chlorine, total chlorine, PH, calcium, alkalinity, cyanuric acid. It tests all the major things that you want to look for.

With drops, the reagents are good for about a year. You want to keep the test kit probably inside in a cool area because if you leave it outside and the heat, it ruins the reagents. You want to test, you will want to change those at least once a year. As far as how often you want to test the water, what do you usually tell pool owners?

On average test your pool water once a week. Some people might have you do it two or three times a week but generally, you only need to do it once a week just to make sure everything is at its proper level. You will need to test more often if you are completing chemical treatment or if you’re getting rid of algae, cloudy water or something like that. Maybe once in the morning once an evening or however long you feel you need to. However often you need to test your pool water but generally once a week is about as all you need.

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