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Thread: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

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    Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    I'm having a real hard time with this test, I got the TFT-100 and this test gives me the most problems. It changes dramatically depending on the background I use and it's very hard to test what is right. If I use a white background like a piece of paper, it looks quite red for pH (I'm guessing it would be read as 8.2) if I use the sky, it's more like 7.6-7.8 range.

    Chlorine is similarly difficult at the higher numbers.

    Is there any rule of thumb to get consistent and accurate results? I feel this test is always a guess when it comes down to it and I never feel comfortable with the answer.
    Christopher

    21' x 43' IG 40K Gallon vinyl and concrete pool; liner: 2016; Hayward DE7220 filter; Maytronics M400; TFT-100; Speed-Stir

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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    I use the sky too for PH. it works for me... As for Chlorine... turning clear is what you are looking for... if it looks slightly pink.. it probably is. .5 isn't going to make or break you anyways... unless it is on the low side.. imop
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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    It's best to hold it with something white behind it, like you said. I actually have the best luck holding it up against these bright fluorescent lights in my basement. Some people use a paper plate outside.

    I never use the "yellow" side of the blue box kit. Always the FAS-DPD drop test. The blue box test is basically a sanity check.
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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    Quote Originally Posted by Puppiesonacid View Post
    I use the sky too for PH. it works for me... As for Chlorine... turning clear is what you are looking for... if it looks slightly pink.. it probably is. .5 isn't going to make or break you anyways... unless it is on the low side.. imop
    I'm referring to the chlorine test in the blue box, opposite to the pH. The chlorine drop test I have no problems at all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Bruce View Post
    It's best to hold it with something white behind it, like you said. I actually have the best luck holding it up against these bright fluorescent lights in my basement. Some people use a paper plate outside.

    I never use the "yellow" side of the blue box kit. Always the FAS-DPD drop test. The blue box test is basically a sanity check.
    Do you test the Chlorine drop test daily? I've been doing it every day I get in the pool as I am trying to get things right.
    If I use something white (the paper from the TFT-100 kit) behind it, the pH definitely looks like it is over 8.0 and is way way redder than looking at the sky or neutral colored backgrounds.
    Christopher

    21' x 43' IG 40K Gallon vinyl and concrete pool; liner: 2016; Hayward DE7220 filter; Maytronics M400; TFT-100; Speed-Stir

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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    i have a hard time with mine too. For chlorine, it helped me to do the OTO test along with the fas-dpd test so i would know what i was supposed to get! pH is still a struggle. When i noticed the guy in Leslie's using his stirrer light as background, I tried using mine. I am usually doing my tests inside, so either hold the kit in front of a window (if sunny), an overhead light, or my stirrer light. At least one of those gives me SOME measure that my guess is close. sorry not helping very much.
    30000 gal inground vinyl liner;sand filter w/glass media, nuvo uv, TF-100 test kit; 25 years on Baquacil, converted to TFP chlorine in 2016

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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    Try this for pH - stand with the sunshine behind you and place a white piece of paper behind the comparator, but not touching it. Then take a photo to get some opinions.... Should look something like this (not same comparator as you are referring to, but same idea on the pH side):

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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    Good idea, mikemass. Thanks. ps. i would read that as roughly 7.3.
    30000 gal inground vinyl liner;sand filter w/glass media, nuvo uv, TF-100 test kit; 25 years on Baquacil, converted to TFP chlorine in 2016

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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    Here is results I just got, I took the pictures indoors but I normally test outdoors.

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    Christopher

    21' x 43' IG 40K Gallon vinyl and concrete pool; liner: 2016; Hayward DE7220 filter; Maytronics M400; TFT-100; Speed-Stir

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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    I would suggest trying again with natural lighting
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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    Quote Originally Posted by Isaac-1 View Post
    I would suggest trying again with natural lighting
    I read a lot do it indoors. That's not a good idea?
    Christopher

    21' x 43' IG 40K Gallon vinyl and concrete pool; liner: 2016; Hayward DE7220 filter; Maytronics M400; TFT-100; Speed-Stir

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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    I think you just have to see what works best for you. Sometimes I hold it up to a white cloud (not grey) and that works well. A blue sky is terrible however. You saw earlier what I do with the comparator on a table with a piece of white paper behind it. Depending on time of day and where sun is, that sometimes is a good option. My house has white siding, so I can stand a distance away from the house and hold it up there for a good reading. Again, a lot depends on where the sun is and if if cloudy out or not. But in general, indoors never works well for me.

    Try a few of those scenarios out.
    25 + year pool owner. Current pool (going on 11th year) - 38K gallon in ground Gunite/White Plaster, Spillover Spa, Hayward Cartridge Filter, Hayward 450k BTU NG Heater, Hayward Goldline Aqua Logic control with T-Cell-15 Salt Water Cell, Dolphin Explorer.
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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    I always use a white background for the pH test. I usually hold it about 6" away from my white gate and I get good results. When I do the test indoors, I use white paper for the background have good lighting and I also keep the test block around 6" away from the paper.

    The yellow chlorine test side of the block is not very accurate and is more or less is there chlorine or not. If you do a lot of tests with the block and do the FAS/DPD at the same time, you can start to learn to read a more accurate reading from the yellow block test.
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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    Quote Originally Posted by ping View Post
    I always use a white background for the pH test. I usually hold it about 6" away from my white gate and I get good results. When I do the test indoors, I use white paper for the background have good lighting and I also keep the test block around 6" away from the paper.

    The yellow chlorine test side of the block is not very accurate and is more or less is there chlorine or not. If you do a lot of tests with the block and do the FAS/DPD at the same time, you can start to learn to read a more accurate reading from the yellow block test.
    The chlorine drop test is super easy to read, especially with the magnetic spinner. I've been doing that one daily as I am new to all this. The pH is my biggest problem. Hard to tell if it is 7.8 or 8.2 or even 7.6.
    Christopher

    21' x 43' IG 40K Gallon vinyl and concrete pool; liner: 2016; Hayward DE7220 filter; Maytronics M400; TFT-100; Speed-Stir

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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    Once you are reading 7.8 I would add enough acid to drop the pH to 7.5 and test the pH half an hour later to see the difference. If the pH goes above 7.8 it is very difficult to tell how high it really is and you might not be adding enough acid to drop it down to 7.5.

    If you are still having a hard time reading the color difference at 7.5, then drop the pH down to 7.2 and that will be easy to see. Keep testing the pH every day to see how fast it is rising. Once it hits 7.8 add enough acid to lower it 7.5 and hopefully you will learn to see the color difference.

    For me, 7.5 to 7.8 is easy to distinguish, once it is at 7.8 it is time to add acid anyways to keep it below 8.0.
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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    Quote Originally Posted by ping View Post
    Once you are reading 7.8 I would add enough acid to drop the pH to 7.5 and test the pH half an hour later to see the difference. If the pH goes above 7.8 it is very difficult to tell how high it really is and you might not be adding enough acid to drop it down to 7.5.

    If you are still having a hard time reading the color difference at 7.5, then drop the pH down to 7.2 and that will be easy to see. Keep testing the pH every day to see how fast it is rising. Once it hits 7.8 add enough acid to lower it 7.5 and hopefully you will learn to see the color difference.

    For me, 7.5 to 7.8 is easy to distinguish, once it is at 7.8 it is time to add acid anyways to keep it below 8.0.
    You got a point, at 7.8-8+ you are already too high and it doesn't really matter what it is at that point. 7.5-7.8 is a lot easier to read. I just wanted to have accurate numbers so I could put them in the calculator but I was having issues with pH not being sure.
    Christopher

    21' x 43' IG 40K Gallon vinyl and concrete pool; liner: 2016; Hayward DE7220 filter; Maytronics M400; TFT-100; Speed-Stir

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    Re: Best way to read Taylor basic test kit

    I suggested doing the test under natural light as it appears to have been done indoors under "cool white" florescent lighting which tends to have poor extended color accuracy leaning heavier on the blue end of the spectrum, particularly true when using cheaper cool white bulb. I should have probably said to try it again with natural or full spectrum lighting.
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