Ph and tds meter

That one.

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If you want to do my work for me it’s a help. In the Amazon link you will see a point (usually) where there is a /ref.

Everything after the / goes away and is replaced with: ?tag=greenrel-20

The link has to be on it’s own line and not touching any other text.


I will keep that in mind the next time I post a link. Thank you

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My question was about cheap ph and tds meters like the vivosun brand. I know bluelab combo would be amazing. But that’s way too expensive for me. Even the apera for 50$ is pricey for me. That’s why I asked about the vivosun brand cuz it’s 20$ for both meters. Even if I need to calibrate a lot that’s doable. As long as they’re accurate when calibrated I’m happy.

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I got you! Thanks!!

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The ph meter will definitely last at least one grow, if you are gentle with it, but the accuracy drops off pretty quick so monitor it diligently. The tds meter should be fine though.

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Cool. So as said before, basically it’ll work just need to calibrate it often. Thanks so much!

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And they are delicate as well, i have broke a couple of bulbs on them, and i have split one in half by dropping it.

You get what you pay for. These are really not very good. So then you will be questioning the data you take because it’s a crappy meter.

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@CoyoteCody thanks. I’ll keep that in mind. For some reason everyone thinks I’m gonna go buy a 200$ bluelab combo because they tell me the cheap ones suck. @Myfriendis410 I wont be questioning the data at all. I’ll be recalibrating it often. So why question it? I’ll just need to be gentle to make sure that it’s still working.

I use the cheap meters. I have several Vivosun in my collection. They seem to last me about 1 year, I think moisture gets inside and corrodes the electronics. I’ve learned to:

Rinse the tip after each use.
Put a few drops of storage solution in the cap. Keep it wet.
Test it in calibration solution (pH 7.0); calibrate it when it drifts too far.
When it starts giving you questionable results, try new batteries.


@Budlite thank you so much. I will keep all that in mind. You are awesome!

@Shaggy you are going to need this. I have a cheap one also ,so I’m going to check my meter every week in flower $20 . I will be getting a better one next grow


@KoolHandLuke what are the other 2 for? I know the 7 is for calibration. Couldn’t I just get a bottle of 7.0 calibration solution from General hydroponics or something?
Eventually when I’ve got the money I’ll upgrade. But I’m broke now trying to get a nice yield.

I calibrate at 6.86pH and once that is set . I use 4.0 and 9.18 to see how accurate it is . I believe some pens can Calibrate at what ever Ph you set it for. Make sure your pen calibrate at 7.0, many cheap pens cal at 6.86.

Ah. That makes sense. Thanks!

I’m low budget and lazy, here’s what I do. I have a shot glass with about 1/2 inch of 7.0 calibration solution, just enough to cover the bulb. I don’t throw it out, but cover it and reuse it for a couple weeks. I only use the 7.0 solution, too lazy to also calibrate with the 4.0 and 10.0 solution. Also my current meter wants to calibrate with 6.86 but I have a large bottle of 7.0 calibration solution from my last meter, so that’s what I use, and mentally add .14 to my measured numbers.

I turn on the meter and check it against the 7.0; if it’s within a couple tenths, I don’t calibrate, but I add or subtract that offset when I measure my water. My water is city water coming to me at about 7.5 pH, I fill 5 gallon buckets and let it sit overnight so the chlorine fades. When I water my plants, I add nutes, CalMag, molasses, etc. to the water and stir well before I check pH. I use pH Up-pH Down to adjust the water to between 6.0 and 6.5. Charts will tell you what elements are absorbed within the pH range, and if I identify some deficiency I might target a higher or lower pH target (with the 6.0 - 6.5 range).

If I get runoff after watering, I use a turkey baster to suck up runoff water and put it in another shot glass (I have many shot glasses). I measure pH in the shot glass, hoping that it is in the 6.0 to 6.5 range.

Rinse the tip of your meter when you are done, store it wet, preferably in storage solution, just a couple drops in the cap. The glass bulb has a special coating on it, if it gets rubbed off or dissolved, the meter will not work accurately anymore.

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Got it. Thanks so much. I’ll have to get some storage solution too then. Yea, I’m wanting to get some FFOF so I can be lazy and just water until week 6ish, or hopefully till flowering. Then I’m making some banana compost tea that I’ve heard is amazing for flowering and good for all cycles too. So I’m gonna mix that into some ph’d water at like 6.3ish. And see how that goes. Probably some LST on the plate too. But that’s it since I’ll be doing ak47 autos and zkittles autos.

Mix all additives to your water then ph test and adjust to 6.5ish. And check runoff each feed.

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That’s the plan. Thanks everybody. I really appreciate everyone who understood the question and didn’t just tell me to get a bluelab. Lol. I’ll be sure to keep a grow journal of the ak and the zkittles once I’ve started them both and they sprout.