Best Pool Water Test Kits Reviews and Buying Guide

Apart from cleaning, the other thing that you need to do is to test the water. In fact, you should try the pool water as frequently as possible to keep it in good health. To make the process easy you must choose a best pool water test kits.

When the pool is being used every day in the summer months, it’s better to test the water bi-weekly. Yes, it may sound like a lot, but it helps in keeping the water fresh. You may not even notice the drop in chlorine, but soon the water will turn green and distasteful. Hence, pay attention as soon as possible.

But you should stop testing your pool in winter, right? No, you should still keep testing it every two weeks or so. High chlorine density can bleach your clothes or towels if left unchecked.

Don’t these things sound tedious? Yes, but we have brought some excellent pool water testing kits to make it easier for you. These will surely help in streamlining the boring part and make summer more fun.

So, let us jump into learning about the best pool water test kits!

If you want to decorate your pool check these out: Best Pool Floating Lights | Best Pool Deck Paints


Pool water testing factors and safety level

There are some factors that you should keep in mind while testing the pool water. The healthy levels of these factors ensure that the pool water is good enough for you to swim. These various factors are:

Chlorine levels

When we think about clean pools, chlorine comes to our mind. This is because chlorine helps to keep the water free from bacteria and germs. The ideal level for this factor is 1.0-3.0 ppm.

Bromine levels

In a swimming pool, the bromine level should be around 5 ppm and never below 3 ppm. Therefore, bromine is usually used as an alternative to chlorine.

pH levels

The pH level of the water states its acidity or alkalinity levels. Ideally, the pool water should have a pH level of 7.2-7.8 as the chlorine performs best at these scales.

Total alkalinity

The recommended level of alkalinity for a pool is between 100-150 ppm. When a pool has the perfect alkalinity, it stands for a good pH level, and the water wouldn’t irritate.

Calcium hardness

Calcium is an important mineral component for water defining its hardness. Therefore, you want the calcium level to be between 200-400 ppm. A pool usually appears cloudy when there is too much calcium in it.

Cyanuric acid

The recommended level of cyanuric acid in a pool is below 100 ppm. This acid acts as a stabilizer for the pool and helps it to remain clean and fresh


Types of Pool Water Testing Kits and Their Accuracy

Well, when you are in the market looking for pool water testing kits, you will get various options. Some tests help you figure out a single component, while others help you know about multiple factors. One common thing that you will need to do is to draw up some pool water.

The tests will often note the process of usage, but we will demystify the different types for you. So, here are some popular variants:

Liquid pool water test kits

These are the most common pool water testing kits that you will see in the market. It provides you with reagents in the liquid form that you need to mix with the water to see the results.

Even though it seems easy, the liquid test kits may take a while as you need a proper water sample. These are some of the most affordable and highly accurate kits that you may get.

liquid pool water test kits

How to Use Liquid Pool Water Test Kits?

  • The first step is to collect the water sample using the collector provided with the kit. Make sure the levels are okay.
  • The test will have different sides designated to test various factors. For instance, you will need to drop phenol red in the areas dedicated to the pH level.
  • The final step will be to compare the colours by viewing the water on a white background. You will get the colour guide on the test kit

Pool Water Test Strips

This is the second most available option in the market, and it is quite cheap. These kits will also require you to draw some water from the pool, but the process is much simpler.

However, the test strips are a little less accurate. You need to be careful about choosing a good company to get accurate test results.

Pool water test strips

How to Use Pool Water Test Strips?

  • The first step is to collect water from the pool.
  • Follow the instructions given in the test kit and dip the dedicated strips into the water.
  • Take out the strips and let it air out without shaking.
  • Within seconds you will be able to observe the colour change. Match it with the colours given on the kit to know about the factor levels.

Digital Pool Water Test Kits

With the boon of technology, we have tech-based pool water testing kits that are quite easy to use. They might be a little more expensive, and you may need to buy multiple kits for different factors. However, these are highly accurate and are essential for those who like to use pools year-round. These kits are also great to avoid the recurring cost of buying liquid or strip kits.

digital pool water test kits

How to Use Digital Pool Water Test Kits?

  • Just like other kits, the first thing you need to do is to collect the water sample.
  • Make sure the digital test kit is calibrated, and then insert its probe into the water sample.
  • In only a few seconds, you will be able to get the readings without needing to squint your eyes to check the colours.

Best Pool Water Test Kits : Quick Summary

Best Liquid Pool Water Test Kit: Poolmaster Essential Collection Chemistry Case Water Test Kit (Pocket friendly, highly accurate, 5-way pool water testing.)

Best Pool Water Test Strips: JNW Direct Pool and Spa Test Strips (Multiple factor testing, affordable price point, easy to use.)

Best Digital Pool Water Test Kit: LaMotte ColorQ Pro 7 Digital Pool Water Test Kit (Quick test results, user friendly design, long time usability.)

Best Smart Pool Water Tester: Apera Instruments Smart Pool Water Tester (Exceptionally accurate, handy design, all-in-one kit, multipurpose testing ability.)

Best Test Kit for Salt Water Pool: eSeasonGear SALT-3050 Digital Salinity PPM Tester (Accurate saltwater testing, also good for koi ponds, small and useful design.)


Top 5 Pool Water Test Kits Review and Verdict

1. Poolmaster Essential Collection Chemistry Case Water Test Kit

Features

  • 5-step testing includes checking chlorine, bromine, pH, acid demand, and total alkalinity
  • Integrated colour chips included for better matching
  • #2 Phenol Red used for accurate testing
  • Has an easy quick-reference guide for doing the test accurately
  • Enough solutions provided to do multiple tests
  • A polyethylene case is included to keep things organized

Review

If you are keen on getting a liquid testing kit, this is one of the best available markets. The simple layout of the testing kit, along with the integrated colour chips, makes it easy. You don’t need to struggle with this kit to get accurate ratings.

The solutions are marked; hence you wouldn’t have trouble using them. Check the quick-reference guide to get yourself acquainted with the kit and use it perfectly. Once the solutions are over, you can quickly buy more to keep testing without trouble.

As this is a 5-way kit, you wouldn’t need to hunt for any other testing kit after getting it. This kit is also great for a beginner as it allows starting working with swimming pools or spas.

Do you like to use bromine? If yes, then this kit has also got you covered, which makes it even more fascinating. Moreover, this kit lets you look at the acid or stabilizer demand, which is seldom included in similar kits.

Rather than housing it in cheap plastic, this kit comes in a hard polyethylene case. Hence, your kit will remain protected even when you are using it regularly. The compartments also help you to segregate the solutions, so there will never be any mix up.

PROS

✅ It is effortless to read the colours.
✅ The plastic case protects everything.
✅ The product is easy to use.
✅ You will get accurate results.
✅ This is a beginner-friendly kit.
✅ Available at an affordable price.

CONS

❌ May need to replace some solutions, but they are easily available.
❌ Need to learn how to collect water samples, which is easy.

Verdict

The Poolmaster testing kit is perfect for someone looking forward to a cheap and accurate product. This kit gets the job done smoothly without breaking the bank. And, you can use it throughout the season without running out of most solutions.


2. JNW Direct Pool and Spa Test Strips

Sale
JNW Direct Pool and Spa Test Strips - 100 Strip...
  • THE ULTIMATE AT HOME POOL TEST STRIPS for your swimming pool &...

Features

  • The kit comes with 100 testing strips
  • Seven factors judged are total hardness, total chlorine, bromine, free chlorine, pH, cyanuric acid (stabilizer), total alkalinity
  • Instant results through a small dip
  • Has a mobile app to track the test results
  • Can be used for multiple water sources
  • Easy downloadable ebook for guidance

Review

Are you looking for an easy to use pool water test kit? If yes, your wish has come true with this phenomenal kit. It comes with 100 strips so that you can do 100 tests throughout the season.

Rather than going to and fro between solutions, all you need to do is to dip it once in the water. The best part about this kit is that it is a 7-in-one kit; hence, it will give you a complete pool health checkup. Also, all the readings come in the same strip, so there is no need to waste multiple ones on every test.

If you are tech-savvy, make sure to download the mobile app to keep track of the results. In case you need some guidance, the handy ebook provides the perfect solutions. Even the colours are clearly stated on the bottle, so understanding them is pretty straightforward.

Do you have multiple water sources that need to be checked? If yes, then this kit will get it done. It works for everything from saltwater pools to spa water.

This kit is also value friendly, and you wouldn’t need to shell out a lot of money. It lets you have crystal clear pool water with minimal effort and maximum benefits.

PROS

✅ The kit is helpful for multiple tests.
✅ It comes in a handy small pack.
✅ Helpful to check multiple water sources.
✅ This kit is very simple to use.
✅ It is an affordable test kit.
✅ The app helps in tracking test schedules.

CONS

❌ It may not last the whole season, but buying them is easy.
❌ Accuracy might be low when used wrongly, but learning is easy.

Verdict

If you are someone who has no time to waste, then this water test kit is perfect for you. It demands minimal effort as you just need to dip a strip, and it comes at an affordable cost.


3. LaMotte ColorQ Pro 7 Digital Pool Water Test Kit

LaMotte 2056 ColorQ Pro 7 Digital Pool Water Test...
  • Features a photometer which gives you a digital reading of test...

Features

  • Contains a photometer that helps to give test readings.
  • Tests the factors of free chlorine, total chlorine, bromine, pH, alkalinity, calcium hardness, and cyanuric acid.
  • Enough liquid reagents and tablets provided for multiple tests.
  • Housed in a water-resistant carrying case.
  • Easy directions are provided with the kit.
  • The digital display is clear and easy to follow

Review

Well, digital technology has advanced to provide us with an amazing testing kit. This is one of the simplest test kits to come by if you have a swimming pool. You may get this product if you are a constant pool enthusiast who wants to have fresh and clean water.

The only thing that you need to do is to prepare a sample and dip the probe to get a clear reading. There is no need to guess the colour changes. You will get the directions with the kit, so do not worry about using it.

We love when digital kits provide clear displays. Reading the test is always fuss-free with this kit. In no time you will become a smart reader with the help of this accurate water tester.

When compared with other digital kits, we saw that this one is quite wholesome. Unfortunately, many digital pool water test kits fail to provide multiple tests. However, this is a 7-in-one tester, so get ready for its surprise.

To keep the meter free from water, the company also provides a helpful water-resistant hard case. Make use of the kit regularly, and the solutions are also easily available in the market.

PROS

✅ Using the meter is a breeze.
✅ Multiple tests are done with the same machine.
✅ Following the directions is pretty simple.
✅ You can easily read the results without trouble.
✅ The design of this digital meter is simple.

CONS

❌ The meter is expensive, but it is highly accurate.
❌ Reagents need to be bought once finished, but getting them is easy.

Verdict

We will recommend this kit to the tech-savvy people who are ready to shell out some money. This is a fabulous kit for those who are looking for exact results. You can get  great pool water test results in just a few seconds with minimal effort with this meter.


4. Apera Instruments Smart Pool Water Tester

Sale
Apera Instruments, LLC-AI3719 PC60-Z Bluetooth...
  • Professionally measuring pH, conducitivity, TDS, salinity,...

Features

  • Pocket-sized tester with Bluetooth connectivity.
  • Can test pH, conductivity (EC), TDS (ppm), salinity (ppt), resistivity, temperature of water.
  • Sync it with ZenTest mobile App for results.
  • Supports four different modes to display results.
  • Has a unique blue sensor that is easy to use and durable.
  • Multipurpose use option is available.
  • Parameters can be fully customized with it.

Review

Are you ready to check out one of the stunning water testers that we have come across? This water tester is much more than you can think about. Rather than just being a simple tester, it provides you with the option to interchange the probes.

When it comes to testing the water, it can easily provide results of five factors. It is also great for knowing the temperature levels of water. Connect with the ZenTest app with the help of Bluetooth, and you will be astonished to see the results.

There are four different modes through which the app displays the results. Everything is simple to understand, and the app can guide you through testing. You can even customize the parameters according to your liking.

There is a blue sensor in the probe that makes it durable and easy to use. It wouldn’t malfunction or get stuck even when the water is too cloudy.

Want to do something fun? Change up the probe to test flat surfaces or even the inside of a fruit. Moreover, when your smartphone is dead, it can easily show you results in the classic style.

We do love the simplistic-style of this device as it makes storing it quite easy. Have a look at the kit as it contains all the things that you will need including the calibration solutions. The company is meticulous enough to even include the batteries, and we cannot help but love them.

PROS

✅ Its small design makes it handy.
✅ Connecting it to your phone is easy.
✅ The kit comes with everything you need.
✅ This tester has a waterproof design.
✅ The different modes help in getting detailed results.

CONS

❌ Learning to calibrate may take some time, but the app makes it easy.
❌ It is costly, but the quality and accuracy is phenomenal.

Verdict

We have to be truthful that this smart tester is good for people with testing experience. It is an investment for those who would like high accuracy from each test. Once you get the hang of using it, you will never go back to using manual water test kits.


5. eSeasonGear SALT-3050 Digital Salinity PPM Tester

eSeasonGear SALT-3050 Waterproof IP65 Meter,...
  • Precalibrated at 3000 ppm salt (NaCl) at 25°C / 77°F

Features

  • A handy pocket-sized salinity tester.
  • It is good for saltwater pools and koi ponds.
  • Comes pre calibrated to 3000 ppm salt.
  • Built-in ATC sensor and salt calibration gives accurate readings.
  • Detection of salt range between 0-5000 ppm.
  • IP65 waterproofing provided on the meter.

Review

Till now, we have been mainly talking about freshwater swimming pools, but now let’s get some salt into it. This test kit is valid for saltwater pools and koi ponds. It is a handy dandy meter that can give an extensive reading of up to 5000 ppm.

The great thing about this meter is its ability to give you the temperature. It supports a range between 0-55 °C or 32-130°F, which is quite helpful. When it comes to saline water, the results may at times vary according to the temperature. So, it comes pre calibrated to give you accurate test results.

Want to go up a notch? Think about ordering in the calibration liquid as it increases the accuracy. The small size of this device ensures that you can easily carry it along in a big property.

The display is crisp and clear for you to get the readings. Read the instructions for a better understanding of this meter. Using it is quite self-explanatory, especially if you have done water testing before. As an obvious inclusion, the product is also

waterproofed so that it will last for a long time. The great thing about this meter is that it performs way better than your usual strips.

PROS

✅ The petite design is quite helpful.
✅ It provides an accurate salt reading.
✅ Using the device is pretty easy.
✅ This is a beginner friendly design.
✅ Can also be used for koi ponds.
✅ It will last for a long time.

CONS

❌ Need to buy a calibration solution separately, which is easy to get.
❌ Specialized for saltwater pools, which is good for specific and accurate results.

Verdict

Many people are fond of creating saltwater pools and koi ponds, and this is a fabulous tool for them. Gone are the days when they needed to second guess the salt ratings. This specialized tool makes getting the water ratings easy, and it also shows the temperature.


Best Pool Water Test kits Buying Guide

As we have said already, pool water testing kits come in different forms. Now, it can be debilitating to look for a testing kit that is perfect for your purpose. Hence, we have gathered some basic identifiers that will help you in choosing a good kit.

Type of Pool Water

Yes, there are different types of pool water depending on the chemicals that are being used. For example, even though chlorine is the most predominantly used component, bromine is also used. Moreover, some people like to keep saltwater pools.

Hence, the test kit you choose should be able to give results for the particular factor.

Factors to be Measure

This point is tied to the former point about finding the type of pool water. Apart from the chlorine, pH level, and alkalinity, you may need to test other things. Hence, some people will require much more than a basic pool water test kit.

Type of Testing Kit and Ease of Use

We have already talked about the different testing kits available in the market. You can buy a liquid, strip, or digital pool water test kit after tallying the factors. If you are a beginner at maintaining the pool, it might be a good choice to start out with strip kits.

Longtime users may buy different digital kits for regular pool maintenance. Some people still prefer to use liquid test kits because of its cost-effective factor.

State of Pool and Accuracy

You may not realise it, but the state of the pool is also an important factor while determining the test kit to use. We will always suggest you to forego the easy route. A pool with chemical imbalance will harm your skin, hair, and eyes.

Hence, if you have neglected your pool for a while, it might be good to get an excellent quality kit that may cost a bit more. It’s always better to get a kit from a reputed brand that deals with pool stuff, as it will surely have higher accuracy.

Cost

Another factor that is often overlooked is the aspect of cost. The liquid and test strips may have a low cost. But, it will definitely add up when you need to test the water thrice in the same week.

Similarly, the digital test kits have a higher initial cost, but they will remain with you for a long time. Hence, you will need to do your due diligence and get a kit that is appropriate for your budget. Please refrain from investing a tonne of money if you use the pool for only a couple of days.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Best Pool Water Test Kits

What is the most accurate way to test pool water?

The liquid and digital pool water test kits are regarded as the most accurate. However, there are great strip test kits that also provide pretty accurate results. Before a test, make sure to collect the pool water correctly to get accurate results.

Do pool test kits go bad?

Yes, liquid and strip pool water test kits do get bad. Most of them last for a year; hence, check the expiry date before buying them. It is a good idea to buy new test kits before the season begins. So, don’t be tempted to buy big bottles or kits if you don’t use a pool regularly. However, digital test kits last for a long time; you will only need to calibrate them from time to time.

What does free chlorine mean on a test strip?

Free chlorine signifies the level of chlorine left in the water that is still free to sanitize the pool. When the free chlorine level drops, it is time to add in the chlorine. The ideal free chlorine level of a pool should be between 2.0-4.0 ppm. If the pool is being used every day, this factor may need checking daily.


Conclusion

By now, you must have understood that choosing a pool water test kit isn’t as simple as it may seem. However, we have tried our best to bring down the confusion for you. Following our tips will surely guide you towards getting a good test kit.


You must understand the season based frequency of testing the water. Make sure to keep a schedule to miss none of the dates. And, be careful to remember checking the water during the winter.

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