I have read back through a lot of old posts here, and I see that I may be hitting on a bit of a touchy subject, but feel that I have to ask (and please don't stone me)...
I am a new pool owner of an old pool that should be refinished soon. I have water in the pool now, but it is too cold to swim yet and my big worry has been keeping it from growing anything and not letting the ph get crazy out of hand while I am waiting for the new surface. I have been using a cheapie kit for that. I have a friend that works for a pool company out of my area and I called him for suggestions on which test kit he uses. He uses the ColorQ pro7 and spoke lovingly of it. I asked him who the competitors are using (since it was given such questionable reviews here). He called some friends of his that do pools in his general area (he belongs to some association of pool folks) and for in the field testing, the ColorQ was the one most were using. He also said that one of them used to work at a big resort somewhere, and that is all that they used there.
Now for a bit of honesty. I want a nice pool, but I am a busy woman (Having just closed on this house I have boxes to unpack still, I have a house that needs updating, I have 2 kids that are involved in way too much, I have a neglected yard, and for some reason I keep having to go back out to earn more money). I hate to front the cash for the cute pool boy to come and handle this (and he is using the colorQ once a week?!?!), but... truth be told... I really don't enjoy testing the water. I am not a chemistry geek and don't really seem to be any good at matching up the colors with the chart (not color blind, but the yellows especially all kind of just look yellow to me).
So, for the slackers among all you dedicated pool chemists, can I get away with the ColorQ most of the time and spot check with the titrate? I know that you are screaming "make time woman!", but the day to day reality is "Tuesday I left the house at 7:30am and returned at 8:30 pm w 2 kids that had yet to eat a real dinner and homework/showers to get through, as well as uniform washing before the next day". I did take time to go out, empty the skimmer, eyeball a bleach add, and check the filter basket. Wed was slightly better, Thurs was the same as Tues. It will slow down some when summer actually hits. But, you can see how there might be days when trying to figure out which shade of yellow I am holding might not be the crowning glory to my evening. I do, however, think that I would be willing to read numbers. Should I just be honest with myself and call the pool company for this season? Would I be better off?