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Thread: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

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    Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    I want to test right, I want to do the BBB method (and will). But $68 for a test kit?

    Okay, so I can get the TF-50 for $45...

    But then I need a pH test. Can I get away with strips for pH?

    Edit: Okay, I have one on the way it seems. Thanks for all the good points.
    13,500 Wilkes Vinyl AG (15'x30' rectangular)
    Hayward Power-Flo LX SP1580, 1HP
    Hayward S-160T High Rate Sand Filter

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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    That's really not an unreasonable price compared to other more expensive kits that aren't as good. You can get a TF-50 and then get a simple HTH kit for pH. Strips aren't as accurate as the drop-based tests are.

    You can cut costs on test kits but you get what you pay for. What you risk though is the expense you may need to go through later from having probelms with out of balance water.
    10K gallon IG gunite with waterfall; Pentair CC320P filter; WhisperFlo 2 HP pump
    TF Test Kits - Pool Math - Pool School
    "It depends."- JohnT

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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    Remember that old ad on TV (I can't remember what it was for ); "You can pay me now or you can pay me later"?! Same principle applies here

    Look at it this way: The average pool guy (in my area) charges $100.00 a month for pool "service", and will not maintain your pool to the level you will. Without the knowledge the test kit provides, you cannot accurately maintain your pool. The kit is 68% of the price of one months service. That is a screaming deal to me!

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    Butterfly's Avatar
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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    The TF100 is the best bang for the buck (IMHO) and, stored properly, should last at least two seasons.

    It will put you in control of your water and that is priceless
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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    Also by getting the 68.00 dollar one you do not have to worry if you will get all of what you need. If you go the TF50, you need a pH test that could run you I would say around 10.00. So you can buy the TF50 and hope you can get what you need (which you should be able to with no problems) or just spend the money now and get exactly what you need with no worries.
    13,000 Plaster IG Pool approx
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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    I think most will tell you that getting a good test kit will save you lots of money and headache in the end and will more than pay for itself. I agree. But..., I suppose if you are really determined to spend the least amount of $ on a test kit, then.....

    1. You'll still want at least a DPD Chlorine test and a pH test because you will want to monitor these almost daily - at least at first. By diluting the DPD, you can get up to 10 ppm CL readings. If you ever run into algae problems, then you will need the FAS-DPD testing reagents for more accurate and higher scale CL readings.

    2. You should take water samples to a pool store you trust at least once a month in order to get CH, TA, CYA, etc. There is a store here I trust because the lady that does it has been doing it for over 15 years, has a setup so that I can watch exactly what she is doing, and she explains all her steps. If she is not there when I go in, I come back another day. And they know me well enough now to know not to recommend TA up or any other such products. All I buy there are the test kit reagents, muratic acid, and CYA.
    25' x 13' Roman, 12000 gal IGP, Plaster, with 500 gal Spa
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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    It will save you the $68 the first season you use it.
    TFP Moderator
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    whoozer's Avatar
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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    Has been SOOOOOOOOO worth the money for me. Allows me to not have to step foot into the pool store unless in a dire situation. They are very convincing like used car salesman and you always leave with something you didn't need! It pays for itself in the first season. I'm actually on season 3 with mine and just now needing refills!
    14x33 fiberglass freeform
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    pool-school/pool_calculator , http://www.tftestkits.net/

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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    There's rather complex chemistry going on in our pools - chemicals are getting consumed, converted, etc. For $68 you can, with good accuracy, measure the levels of a few critically important chemicals and then use the Pool Calculator to determine, with good accuracy, how much of a few chemicals you need to add to keep the pool sanitized, and chemically balanced so that you or your pool aren't harmed.

    You can choose to measure fewer chemicals, with less accuracy, at your own peril.

    $68 is cheap compared to those perils, and experience predicts that things will get messed up if you don't measure the right stuff to an adequate level of accuracy.

    Just my 2 cents (but I'm a scientist who likes to measure and understand mechanisms).

    Kelly
    15X30 AGP, Lomart beaded liner;
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    NWMNMom's Avatar
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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    I used the cheaper drops based tests for some years before going with the TFP kit and never had all the right items, had to buy replacement kits more often, etc. It really did end up costing more to go with the cheapo kits. $68 is not too much.
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    I saw kits at the poolstore that were basic for $35-$45 and more expensive ones that didn't even test all that the TF-100 does. While $68 is a lot of money, I think you get your money's worth for it.
    Plano, TX
    25,000 Gallons, Plaster, DE Filter, No SWG

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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    Since some test reagents last more than one year my annual cost using the TF-100 is $30 to $40.

    After I started using the TF-100 I never go to a pool store & get confused by their test results and I am not tempted to purchase products that I do not need. My pool has remained clear and beautiful. My wife loves that we never have pool algae problems.

    Since I have a SWG I test pH frequently to avoid scaling. pH drops are cheap, sufficiently accurate and long lasting. I personally would not use a test strip.
    30,000 gallon gunite in-ground with a spillover spa, Diving board and water slide
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    Testing with the TF-100 Test Kit

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    Speaking for Taylor...

    As life happened, I got a Taylor K-2006 test kit before I knew about the one offered through this site's member.

    I love my Taylor kit. It is pretty blue and compact. It is roughly the same price as the TF-100. It comes with a water balancing wheel and a waterproof booklet that I often refer to.

    Yes, at first I was shocked at having to shell out so much money; thank heavens there was no tax or shipping charges. But I have come to look at it as not only a very, very necessary and sophisticated tool, but also I also consider it to have a bonus of being quite an inexpensive little hobby. I love to test my water. I probably test it too often. It's a great toy for a grown up.

    I also like that the Taylor reagent bottles all have their lot numbers on them. I can phone Taylor three or four times a year, immediately speak with a human being, who is happy to take down all of my lot numbers and then tell me which reagent are "Fresh", which are "Usable", and I suppose they'd tell me which are out of date, should that ever happen. I reorder my reagents directly from Taylor rather than buy them at the pool store. The website takes credit cards now, and I know the bottles will be fresh.

    I have come to be slightly disappointed in my test strips that I have for borates and phosphates, as they are only strips and not very accurate. I cannot imagine testing my water with strips for the important factors such as chlorine, pH, TA, and CH....(I'm guessing there's no strips for CYA).

    Lana
    25,000 gallon, refurbished 1960's inground concrete, Jandy sand filter w Jandy 1.5hp single-speed pump, Pool Pilot Digital SWCG+Chemtrol 2100+CO2 tank; PebbleTec White Pearl with 10% Cobalt Blue Dark Beadcrete by Olympic Pool Plastering, Georgia. Taylor K-2006 Test Kit; Aqua Check Salt test; LaMotte borates test, and Jack's Magic Sequest test kit; SparklyPoolitis level: extremely high.

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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    Alright... you've convinced me. When I have the money... I'll order it.
    13,500 Wilkes Vinyl AG (15'x30' rectangular)
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    dmanb2b's Avatar
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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    excellent move ...it will save you money in the long run...used daily as indicated on the instructions, you will avoid spending money on chemicals you probably do not need.
    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    Quote Originally Posted by mkenyon2
    Alright... you've convinced me. When I have the money... I'll order it.
    Never underestimate the power of peer pressure.

    Really though, you'll be glad you did.
    10K gallon IG gunite with waterfall; Pentair CC320P filter; WhisperFlo 2 HP pump
    TF Test Kits - Pool Math - Pool School
    "It depends."- JohnT

  17. Back To Top    #17

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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    Can't stress enough how important it is for this item. I used test strips back in the Uk when I lived there and had so many problems pre BBB. Now with this all in one sukka - crystal clear and piece of mind. Money well spent in my opinion
    25k Inground Vinyl - 3ft to 10ft, Tagelus TA-60 Sand, Minimax 400 Heater, Save T3 autocover.

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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    Quote Originally Posted by mkenyon2
    Alright... you've convinced me. When I have the money... I'll order it.
    Smart move. Like the others said, you won't regret it.
    20x40 IG Vinyl, 1.5 HP Whisperflo, Sta-Rite System 3 (300) Sq. ft Cart
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  19. Back To Top    #19

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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    I had the same reaction when I saw the price of the test kit, but I looked at it this way:

    I was preparing for the season by budgeting for pool store chemicals based on what I had been paying in the previous years. I was going to buy all of what I thought I would need for the season up front during a pool store 20% off sale. I figured the total would come to about $500-600.

    Then I found TFP and started reading. And reading. And reading.

    And reading.

    Then I looked at the price of the test kit, and I thought, "Whoa, the strips are like $10 for enough for two seasons!"

    Then I read some more.

    Then I started doing the math - based on what I though I needed and what I actually expect to need this season, there was enough money left over in the little budget I made up in my head to buy four test kits. So I bought one (way too early, it's been sitting in the cupboard for a couple of months now taunting me).

    And then I bought a 30' x 60' solar cover.

    The test kit, at around $70, should last me two seasons (maybe three) and save me $300 PER SEASON in pool store chemicals.

    The solar cover, at (IIRC) $300, should last me at least three seasons and save me $1000 in gas PER SEASON (assuming I set the heater and left it on all season). I never really did this, but I did endure "the water is too cold" complaints every weekend, so assuming it helps even slightly it's money well spent.

    So yeah, I'm tempted to test the water from my hose right now, just so I get a feel for the tests.
    45,180 gallon 26' x 53' IG Vinyl, irregular shape. Hayward sand filter / pump. Polaris AutoClear SWG, supplemented with a Hayward Automatic Chlorinator (In-Line). Hayward 400K BTU heater. Paramount "turnover" system. Polaris 480 PRO cleaner.

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    Ohm_Boy's Avatar
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    Re: Ok, I want to test, but $68?!

    I had my times, too, when I could not afford a TF-100... had just been layed off and really couldn't bust out the funds. I used a 5 or 6-way kit, and did OK, but I had to do a lot of guessing the first time that there was a big storm that dumped a lot of leaves and 'oak buds' into my pool and needed to stop an algae bloom. I managed, but I had to err on the high side with my chemicals, and I got off light because my pool was vinyl. I didn't have to worry too much about CH and how bad I was kicking the ph/ta out of whack by focusing on ball-parking the FC based on a max reading of 5. But I can assure you that I spent more than 68 bucks.
    [center:1kpalu48]Helpful Links: Pool School | CYA/Chlorine Chart | Pool Calculator[/center:1kpalu48]

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