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Thread: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    I bought two bottles of Aquachek salt test strips this year because I thought the first bottle might be leading me astray. The first bottle I bought has an expiration date of 01/2010, and the second has an expiration date of 01/2011. I just tested the same sample of water leaving each strip in for 30 minutes, and here's the results:

    exp date 01/2010 : between 3080 and 3330 ppm

    exp date 01/2011 : 2670 ppm.

    The reason I thought the first bottle was leading me astray was because the first test I did, the level was 2440. I added roughly 50 - 60 lbs of salt, and it didn't move. I bought the other bottle of strips, and my initial reading was 2460. I added another 40 lbs of salt, and now I get the readings I posted above.

    My initial inclination is to believe the newer strips over the older ones, but when I run the numbers through the pool calc, it looks like the older strips match up more closely for the amount of salt that was added.

    Methinks I might take a sample to the local pool store and see what they say, just for comparison.

    Thoughts??

    Thanks,
    Mike
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
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    Intex 8110 SWCG
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Could you please check something for me? I have a theory about how to tell good salt test strips apart from bad salt test strips, but I don't have any bad salt test strips to compare to.

    If you could, take a close look at the horizontal yellow stripe at the top of the reading area. This is the stripe that turns brown to indicate that the test is complete. Compare the color/shade of yellow between unused strips from each bottle. I am wondering if the yellow stripes on the bad bottle have already turned brown, or discolored in some other way. In theory, a strip that has a nice clear yellow stripe should be good and a bad one should have a brown or discolored stripe.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Jason,

    I just checked, and both look yellow, and identical. Neither one appears to be darker or discolored.
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
    Pentair Optiflo 1 hp/2sp pump w/ Swimpro Voyager 150 sq ft cartridge filter
    Intex 8110 SWCG
    "Fear the Schnauz!"

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Oh well, it was worth a try.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Might be worth a shot to call Hach and speak with a tech about that. 574-262-2060. It may be a quality control thing.
    10K gallon IG gunite with waterfall; Pentair CC320P filter; WhisperFlo 2 HP pump
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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    True. I'll try to take a sample of water to the local pool store tomorrow and see what they say it is. I was thinking about trying to do some baseline testing here, but if 25lb of salt/1000 gallons = 3000 ppm, then scaled down, that would be .025 lb (55 g) of salt per gallon. I don't have a scale that measures that precisely.
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
    Pentair Optiflo 1 hp/2sp pump w/ Swimpro Voyager 150 sq ft cartridge filter
    Intex 8110 SWCG
    "Fear the Schnauz!"

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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Quote Originally Posted by 257WbyMag
    Might be worth a shot to call Hach and speak with a tech about that. 574-262-2060. It may be a quality control thing.
    Thanks. I might just do that.
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
    Pentair Optiflo 1 hp/2sp pump w/ Swimpro Voyager 150 sq ft cartridge filter
    Intex 8110 SWCG
    "Fear the Schnauz!"

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    No P in my ool's Avatar
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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    I am having the same dilemma. I have strips that expire in June of this year that read 3110ppm and I was getting a "low salt"code. The water didn't taste salty so I got new strips that expire in 2011 that give me a result of 2280. I am trusting the new ones. The yellow stip on the old ones appear to be tinted brown in direct sunlight but appear the same under indoor lights.
    Just my .02.
    21' Leslies Beachland Ag Pool, 10,000 gallons, professionally installed (best money I ever spent) Hayward 16" sand filter w/Pentair two speed pump Fafco 4x20 solar heater,Aqua Trol RJ. Borates added. Hard plumbed.

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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    Could you please check something for me? I have a theory about how to tell good salt test strips apart from bad salt test strips, but I don't have any bad salt test strips to compare to. . . . I am wondering if the yellow stripes on the bad bottle have already turned brown, or discolored in some other way. In theory, a strip that has a nice clear yellow stripe should be good and a bad one should have a brown or discolored stripe.
    That was certainly the case earlier this year with almost-but-not-quite-expired test strips that led me astray earlier this season. The yellow band wasn't as dark as it gets in the testing process, but it was definitely discolored. A good warning sign.
    ____________
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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Hmmmm. Mike, I just posted above about my testing the AquaChek strips against the Taylor K-1766 drop test. My particular strips read within 5% of the Taylor drop test. They expire August 2010. Might be worth it to get a Taylor kit just to compare which strips may be "bad" or reading incorrectly for the future. I got this "backup comparison" kit just because I don't want to oversalt and have to drain! HTH... Just my .02!
    7,000 gal. IG gunite, SWG, PebbleSheen interior finish-Aqua Blue, 8' vanishing edge raised 16-jet overspill spa, 2 12" waterfalls, tan shelf with bubbler.
    Pentair equipment: Easy Touch 8, Intellichlor IC-40, Intelliflo VF 3050, 2.5 hp Whisperflo spa pump, 1 hp Whisperflo water feature pump, Quad 100 DE filter, Master Temp 400 heater, Legend Platinum Cleaner (3/4 hp pump). Autofill, TF-100 Test Kit w/salt and borate strips.

    Pisces Pool Build

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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    I read your other thread and thought the same thing.."I need a K-1766 kit". Where did you get yours at, if I may ask?
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
    Pentair Optiflo 1 hp/2sp pump w/ Swimpro Voyager 150 sq ft cartridge filter
    Intex 8110 SWCG
    "Fear the Schnauz!"

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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Spend $10 for a third test. You will have two good ones (probably), and you can't put a price on a good nights sleep.
    40,000 gal pool, Goldline SWG, 1.5 hp pump, sand filter, plaster w/epoxy paint.

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    Pisces's Avatar
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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Mike, since Duraleigh doesn't sell them, or anyone local, I checked Taylor's website...they sell them, but their credit card ordering was temporarily disabled. I went to PoolPlaza and ordered it. $23 plus shipping. I know it's just one more way to spend $$, but I feel better being able to compare this test with my test strips. I know I'd spend money if I had to drain and refill, plus the agony of it! HTH!

    Taylor K-1766: http://www.poolplaza.com/merchant.mv?Sc ... gory_Code=
    7,000 gal. IG gunite, SWG, PebbleSheen interior finish-Aqua Blue, 8' vanishing edge raised 16-jet overspill spa, 2 12" waterfalls, tan shelf with bubbler.
    Pentair equipment: Easy Touch 8, Intellichlor IC-40, Intelliflo VF 3050, 2.5 hp Whisperflo spa pump, 1 hp Whisperflo water feature pump, Quad 100 DE filter, Master Temp 400 heater, Legend Platinum Cleaner (3/4 hp pump). Autofill, TF-100 Test Kit w/salt and borate strips.

    Pisces Pool Build

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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Too funny...yesterday I checked around online, and found the same thing you did - couldn't order directly from Taylor because their credit card ordering script was down, and Poolplaza was my next choice, so I ordered from poolplaza...and then I log in today and find your post.. Soon as I get my kit, I'll update this post as to which bottle was fibbing to me.
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
    Pentair Optiflo 1 hp/2sp pump w/ Swimpro Voyager 150 sq ft cartridge filter
    Intex 8110 SWCG
    "Fear the Schnauz!"

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    Pisces's Avatar
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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    LOL!! Hopefully you'll get the kit fast, but it won't be "Duraleigh" fast. I swear, sometimes I think he flies down here from NC and put the stuff in my mailbox himself. Hey, I'm anxious to hear which strips were off....I'll be looking for your results. Happy testing!
    7,000 gal. IG gunite, SWG, PebbleSheen interior finish-Aqua Blue, 8' vanishing edge raised 16-jet overspill spa, 2 12" waterfalls, tan shelf with bubbler.
    Pentair equipment: Easy Touch 8, Intellichlor IC-40, Intelliflo VF 3050, 2.5 hp Whisperflo spa pump, 1 hp Whisperflo water feature pump, Quad 100 DE filter, Master Temp 400 heater, Legend Platinum Cleaner (3/4 hp pump). Autofill, TF-100 Test Kit w/salt and borate strips.

    Pisces Pool Build

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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Got my new kit today, annnd (drum roll please)......it measured 2600 ppm. So it looks like the newer strips are good (exp 01/2011), and the older strips are kaput (exp 01/2010). Of course, now I've got the K-1766, and don't really need test strips anymore. Also looks like I need to bring my level up another 400 ppm, too.
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
    Pentair Optiflo 1 hp/2sp pump w/ Swimpro Voyager 150 sq ft cartridge filter
    Intex 8110 SWCG
    "Fear the Schnauz!"

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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeInTN
    Of course, now I've got the K-1766, and don't really need test strips anymore.
    ROFLMAO! Don't be too sure!

    Just wait until you get indelible black stains on your fingers or nails and get permanent stains inside your testing vial! (Hint: stuff a wad of tissue or toilet paper in the vial and wipe it out after each test to get the precipitated silver chloride out! It takes a bit of scrubbing, btw.)

    Have fun and let us know when you decide to go back to the strips!

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    Pisces's Avatar
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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Quote Originally Posted by waterbear
    Quote Originally Posted by MikeInTN
    Of course, now I've got the K-1766, and don't really need test strips anymore.
    ROFLMAO! Don't be too sure!

    Just wait until you get indelible black stains on your fingers or nails and get permanent stains inside your testing vial! (Hint: stuff a wad of tissue or toilet paper in the vial and wipe it out after each test to get the precipitated silver chloride out! It takes a bit of scrubbing, btw.)

    Have fun and let us know when you decide to go back to the strips!
    No kidding, right Waterbear?!! I'm just using that stuff *very carefully with rubber gloves on* to double check things occasionally!! Mike...so glad you were able to tell which batch was bad!
    7,000 gal. IG gunite, SWG, PebbleSheen interior finish-Aqua Blue, 8' vanishing edge raised 16-jet overspill spa, 2 12" waterfalls, tan shelf with bubbler.
    Pentair equipment: Easy Touch 8, Intellichlor IC-40, Intelliflo VF 3050, 2.5 hp Whisperflo spa pump, 1 hp Whisperflo water feature pump, Quad 100 DE filter, Master Temp 400 heater, Legend Platinum Cleaner (3/4 hp pump). Autofill, TF-100 Test Kit w/salt and borate strips.

    Pisces Pool Build

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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Evan, nitrile gloves from Sam's means never having to wonder where the stains came from on your hands. I always have at least one open box in the garage for when I work on my automobiles and for weeding flowerbeds, and since I've been duly warned about the silver nitrate, I won't use the K-1766 unless I do have gloves on. I do appreciate the tip about getting the precipitate out of the tube, when that becomes necessary.

    Pisces, thanks for the kudos. It's kind of irritating when two bottles of strips give such different results and you don't know which one's fibbing to you (especially when both were sold to me as "new" this year).
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
    Pentair Optiflo 1 hp/2sp pump w/ Swimpro Voyager 150 sq ft cartridge filter
    Intex 8110 SWCG
    "Fear the Schnauz!"

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    Re: Which Aquachek Strip to Believe??

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeInTN
    Evan, nitrile gloves from Sam's means never having to wonder where the stains came from on your hands. I always have at least one open box in the garage for when I work on my automobiles and for weeding flowerbeds, and since I've been duly warned about the silver nitrate, I won't use the K-1766 unless I do have gloves on.
    Real men don't wear glove! We don't need no steenkin' gloves!



    Quote Originally Posted by MikeInTN
    I do appreciate the tip about getting the precipitate out of the tube, when that becomes necessary.
    After every test, actually!

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