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Thread: Comparing Test Kits.

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    Comparing Test Kits.

    This side conversation was split from HERE. jbizzle

    Quote Originally Posted by chiefwej View Post
    That kit will work fine. In fact, it's what many (if not most) pool service professionals use. The major advantage of the T-100 is that it provides more of the reagents most commonly used, so it generally a much better value for the residential pool owner.
    I don't feel that is a fair comparison. One might compare the TF-50($45) with the K-2006A($48) or the TF-100($68) with the K-2006C($72), but comparing the TF-100 with the K-2006A is apples and oranges.

    Another advantage of the K-2006C box (it is taller) is that when refill time comes, 2 oz. reagents can be bought for much less per unit volume than the .75 oz. or 1 oz. reagents.

    Of course, if one tests infrequently enough not to use more than .75 oz. or 1 oz. of some reagents per 12-24 months, they should purchase accordingly.

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    Re: The right Test kit?

    I don't understand your logic... Comparing 4 kits that use the exact same reagents is comparing apples to apples. If it is just the size of the box in question, buy a larger box. The compartmentalized boxes come in all sizes and can be had for under $10-15. I know that regardless if I had any of these kits, when I need refills I would buy a larger quantity regardless if it fits or not.
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    Re: The right Test kit?

    Quote Originally Posted by Scuba_Steve View Post
    I don't understand your logic... Comparing 4 kits that use the exact same reagents is comparing apples to apples. If it is just the size of the box in question, buy a larger box. The compartmentalized boxes come in all sizes and can be had for under $10-15. I know that regardless if I had any of these kits, when I need refills I would buy a larger quantity regardless if it fits or not.
    Now, your logic escapes me! Your argument is essentially that a 6-pack of Coke is the same thing as a 12 pack of Coke, since both packs contain Coke!

    The size of these kits is governed by the amount of reagent that is included with each purchase, not the interior capacity of the box.... although the K-2006C box is handy. One can't compare the TF-100 to the K-2006A because the TF-100 costs more and contains more reagent. (Maybe I need to make the point that this isn't a 1:1 ratio of money vs. liquid measure.) The TF-100 has roughly the equivalent amount of reagent as the K-2006C and that would be a more meaningful comparison, ounce by ounce and dollar for dollar.

    If this doesn't make sense, do a spread sheet for original cost of purchase and cost of refills (at least cost available) over time, like I did. For a frequent tester, like myself, the savings are surprising.

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    Re: The right Test kit?

    Ok, it is just wordage being misconstrued here then.

    The question was, is the k-2006 an acceptable kit?

    The answer, yes, it is the same kit just with different quantities of reagents. Well other than the lack of an OTO test, which is basically worthless IMO.

    If I like apples, and I bought an orange. Am I good? Obviously no. i.e. apples to oranges

    If I like apples and, I bought a small bag of apples. Am I good? Yes. You will run out soon, but at least you have an apple. You probably paid more per apple as well. We are now comparing a bag of apples to a bushel of apples. i.e. apples to apples
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    Re: Comparing Test Kits.

    I disagree about the OTO being worthless it makes a great sanity check and is good at telling if chlorine is Low or VERY VERY high where the FAS-DPD may bleach out, or be under dosed on 870 powder.
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    Re: Comparing Test Kits.

    While I have a dog in the fight, the OTO test is FAR from worthless. It actually is probably the single most used test on the planet....that in itself is a pretty good argument.

    Secondly, it is inexpensive, incredibly dependable and compact. The only things lacking in OTO is resolution and range. Not good enough for some of the precision we teach but it is absolutely the only chlorine test you need in very small pools, of which there are millions. Worthless? Really?
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    Re: Comparing Test Kits.

    Quote Originally Posted by ewkearns View Post
    This side conversation was split from HERE. jbizzle



    I don't feel that is a fair comparison. One might compare the TF-50($45) with the K-2006A($48) or the TF-100($68) with the K-2006C($72), but comparing the TF-100 with the K-2006A is apples and oranges.

    Another advantage of the K-2006C box (it is taller) is that when refill time comes, 2 oz. reagents can be bought for much less per unit volume than the .75 oz. or 1 oz. reagents.

    Of course, if one tests infrequently enough not to use more than .75 oz. or 1 oz. of some reagents per 12-24 months, they should purchase accordingly.
    The main problem I see is that the members of this site only see TF100 or K2006, this don't understand if it is an A 2006 or a C. So, they Google and see they can get a 2006 for less than $50 and order it, not knowing they end up with .75 bottles of reagents. How do I know, I fell into that same trap.

    When someone shows up here we want them to clear their pool, not have to go into a long discussion of differences in test kits.

    I stand by the statement that the TF100 is the best value to the purchaser.
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    Re: Comparing Test Kits.

    The TF-50 is not a complete kit. It is designed as a kit to augment those who already have a pH test, such as found in smaller kits that have fewer types of tests. Taylor doesn't have a single kit like that so there's not a single Taylor kit to use for comparison.

    The TF-100 is a complete kit so it is valid to compare that against the closest Taylor complete kits and that is what Test Kits Compared does. The unfair part of that comparison is that it does not list the Acid/Base demand tests which the Taylor kit has and the TFTestkit does not. While one can argue that this test is not normally needed, for a fair comparison it should be listed in the chart even if there's an asterisk indicating that this test is not commonly needed. It should also indicate the difference in the pH tests since the TF-100 uses the K-1000 pH test which has a different range and comparisons (6.8, 7.2, 7.5, 7.8, 8.2) and smaller vial than the K-2006 pH test (7.0, 7.2, 7.4, 7.6, 7.8, 8.0).

    You were comparing kits by price, but you were not comparing comparable kits. You can compare the TF-100 against the K-2006A or the K-2006C. Either way you will find that the TF-100 is a better value because it contains more of the reagents you end up using the most. You get way too many TA and CH tests with the K-2006C. Also, where are you getting a price of $72 for the Taylor K-2006C? I see $105, $89.99, $125.10, $109.95, $95.99, $124.99, $94.99, $142.99, ...

    I don't see anyone selling the Taylor K-2006C kit for less than around $90. So the TF-100 is less at under $70, gives you the same number of FAS-DPD tests and pH tests that are the ones used most frequently, gives you more CYA tests, and gives you fewer tests you don't use as often such as TA and CH. The indicator dyes won't usually last more than 2 years so for tests you don't use often it makes no sense to pay for large volumes of reagents.
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    Re: Comparing Test Kits.

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh View Post
    While I have a dog in the fight, the OTO test is FAR from worthless. It actually is probably the single most used test on the planet....that in itself is a pretty good argument.

    Secondly, it is inexpensive, incredibly dependable and compact. The only things lacking in OTO is resolution and range. Not good enough for some of the precision we teach but it is absolutely the only chlorine test you need in very small pools, of which there are millions. Worthless? Really?
    When I stated it was worthless, I meant I find it is worthless when someone owns a FAS-DPD kit as well. I was saying that comparing the k-2006 vs the TF-100.

    Reason being, we do teach precision here. I understand that it is a check and balance vs the FAS-DPD in case of a false 0, but really how often does that happen? From my understanding, you would need an absolutely immense amount of chlorine to get a false 0.

    While it is the most common test for millions of pools, the pool store is also the method of care for most of those millions of pools.

    This statement was not based on THEM. It was based on US!
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    Re: Comparing Test Kits.

    You don't always need the precision of the FAS-DPD test if you are doing regular testing of a stable pool. The FAS-DPD precision and ability to accurately measure higher FC levels becomes important during a SLAM or when performing an OCLT or if there is an unusual change in chlorine demand. It would be wise to double check pool levels with the FAS-DPD, say weekly, to be on the safe side, but for daily checks once one knows the normal loss rate and normal color in the OTO test it's not terrible to use it. The FAS-DPD is a more expensive test so it's reasonable to stretch it out using the OTO in between times.

    Now, that said, I always use the FAS-DPD, but that's in part because I only need to test and dose twice a week due to my mostly opaque pool cover.
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    Re: Comparing Test Kits.

    I use the OTO FC test quite often for a quick check whenever I test the pH. If the yellow color is in the expected range, I go on about my business.
    If its too yellow that means I might need to make an adjustment of my SWG.

    If not yellow enough, then I do a CC or OCLT test.

    I use my FAS-DPD for the precision that I need to keep it just right.

    Once the FC consumption is learned over a period of time, the OTO FC is quite useful, thus saving my FAS-DPD regeants
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    Re: Comparing Test Kits.

    chem geek hit on a nice description....."stable pool". My pool has certain periods, usually June and July, where everything is rock solid and I know I'm gonna' need about 2.5 - 3 ppm daily in FC and that's it.

    Because I've had 9 years of experience, I use nothing but the OTO test and even then not every day. The pool is simply very, very stable.
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    Re: Comparing Test Kits.

    I have a K-1001 (DPD chlorine test and phenol red pH) and a K-2006A [EDIT] and I have since upgraded several reagents to 2oz bottles [END-EDIT]. I started off with those as I am a big fan/user of Amazon and make most of my online purchases that way. I certainly see the unique differences of the TF-100 as compared to the K-2006, but I do actually test my TA and CH quite frequently so I probably tend to use those reagents way more than some pool owners who live in parts of the country with low CH. I also prefer the pink color of the DPD test to the yellow OTO as I could never see the faint differences in the OTO yellow color (perhaps due to some low level color blindness). Therefore, to me, the OTO is not useful and I'd rather use the DPD test for the high frequency daily TC and pH testing. I also found the TA reagent got quite a bit of use as I needed to adjust my TA (and keep a good check on it) in order to help stabilize my pH. My fill water TA is 120ppm (min) and I like to keep my TA down at 60-70ppm (with 50ppm borates) to mitigate pH rise. For those in areas of the country with very high TA fill water, the TA test can get a lot of use.

    So perhaps, in the end, the value of the various kits changes depending on where you are. As I said, since I live in a high CH area of the country and my TA needs close monitoring, I like to keep a tight check on those parameters.
    Last edited by JoyfulNoise; 06-14-2015 at 09:33 AM. Reason: left out a key detail
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    Re: Comparing Test Kits.

    Quote Originally Posted by chem geek View Post
    Also, where are you getting a price of $72 for the Taylor K-2006C?
    I'm getting most of my prices from a vendor you recommended in one of your older posts, but perhaps on another site. I didn't make a note of the appropriate site.

    Anyway, the site you posted was Amato and it is hard to beat their prices!

    I can no longer find that price on the K-2006C Kit, but that is what I have it logged in my original notes, which are about a year old. I may have gotten that price from Amato, too.... but it appears they don't or no longer carry the item. I suppose we should disregard the price I stated and go with yours....

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    Re: Comparing Test Kits.

    Yes, I was aware of Amato having low prices for the Taylor kits and I used to reference that years ago even on this site, but they are no longer available there. They only seem to sell reagents. When comparing test kit prices, we need to stay current because the costs have been slowly going up over time. Dave has kept his TF-100 prices constant by carefully managing his costs so whereas the Taylor kits have crept up in price over time, the TF-100 has not.

    The last time I referenced Amato on TFP was in 2010 and 2011 as shown in my posts in the threads Best place online to buy a Taylor K2006C, Cheapest place to buy Taylor reagents, Question about reagents, Taylor fas DPD reagent replacements?, and Updating Taylor K-2005 to K-2006. You will note that currently not only does Amato Industries not sell the kits (only the reagent replacements), but that Swimming Pool Supply Company does not sell the Taylor K-2006C kit, only the K-2006 for the same $55 as some other sites whereas TFTestkits sells it for $49.

    I agree with the assessment that which test kit is best may vary by the circumstances and preferences. If one needs more CH and TA tests or one really likes the acid/base demand (which can also be used to move the pH test up and down if one is unsure of the color) or one prefers the pH range and comparator colors of the K-2006, then that may be better than the TF-100 for that individual. Because situations vary, no single test kit is going to be perfectly ideal for everyone so the TF-100 has tried to hit the sweet spot of being most economical for most people. No one is forced to choose that kit.
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    Re: Comparing Test Kits.

    Adding my 2cents.
    I used to think the OTO test was useless when I first started testing my pool 4 years ago with the TP-100. I was fighting algae a lot and the OTO was useless for SLAMS. I used the CH test for awhile until I learned vinyl pools don't need CH testing. 4 years later finally threw out CH regents. I used the others regularly, esp. FAS-DPD regents and rarely used the OTO.
    This year I have used the OTO more than FAS-DPD and have learned, like duraleigh, I don't need to use FAS-DPD several times a week since my pool is balanced. The OTO is used instead and I save on regents. I also no longer purchase CH regents. The other Taylor test kits would include regents I will not need. So TF-100 was and has turned out to be the most economical test kit for us.
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