Whether a pond has an acidic or alkaline bent shows up in the water’s pH. The pH range runs from 1 to 14, with lower numbers indicating acidic water and higher values indicating alkaline water. A reading of 7 is neutral. Most ponds run between 6.8 and 7.8, with values fluctuating through the day. Checking a pond’s pH is a very important step toward keeping water chemistry. You’ve got several options with respect to monitoring pH, the majority of which you might purchase at garden centres, pet shops or online.
Paper test strips are also referred to as litmus paper, pH paper or just test paper. Retailers sell packages that contain tens of thousands or even a hundred test strips in them. The paper includes a reagent that reacts with hydrogen ions in the water. Drop a test strip into a vial that contains a sample of pond water, and the reaction occurs. In a few moments, the test strip changes color. By comparing the color of the test strip to a color wheel included with the strips, then you can determine the pH of the pond. Test strips provide a fast reading, but it’s a subjective one, as it involves a color comparison, which might be difficult to interpret.
Liquid tests work similarly to paper test strips. Add some drops of reagent to a sample of pond water and then wait for the color change to happen. These kits comprise a color wheel for comparison purposes, and they suffer with the identical subjective interpretations as paper test kits. The benefit of liquid over paper is that the entire sample may be disposed of at once, rather than needing to choose out a wet test strip prior to pouring out the contents of the sample vial.
Electronic, electronic read-out metres are accurate pH measurement tools with quick analysis and display. Meters should be calibrated periodically with alternatives of a known pH. The test solution is often packaged with meters or may be bought separately. A meter picks up the quantity of hydrogen ions present in pond water through an electronic probe. The meter is a battery powered, handheld tool that’s typically small enough to maintain the pocket.
Both analyze papers and analyze solutions are low cost options that offer precise enough readings for many ponds. Batches of test papers or a bottle of falls often sell for $10 or less as of 2012, and resources are easily available either online or in local shops. Electronic meters are considerably more expensive, ranging from approximately $60 to a few hundred dollars per unit. If you intend to check pH several times daily for extended periods, a meter may offer convenience and ease of use.