Being an indoor garden owner who uses hydroponics, I’ve witnessed firsthand the challenges that come with it. Among those challenges is making sure that the pH level is balanced for the system.
In my few years of experience managing my hydroponics at home, I’ve learned that keeping the pH levels of a hydroponic system is essential to growing healthy plants. And with regards to measuring the pH levels of your system, you will need a reliable pH level meter or measuring device.
In this article, I’ll share with you the best digital pH meters for hydroponics that I’ve personally tried and as per suggestions from professionals.
**Below, you'll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.
So why do you need to keep track of your hydroponics’ pH levels? Despite any growing environment or system whether it’s on soil or through hydroponic system, pH will play an important role in making sure that the plants have the right amount of nutrients.
By measuring the pH levels, you are able to find out if you are giving enough nutrients to the plants. Also, by providing the right amount of nutrients, you can achieve the maximum growth potential for the plants.
A safe pH level for the majority of plants ranges around 5.5-6.5 where the ‘sweet spot’ is in between this range.
While it is important to measure the pH levels of your hydroponics, it is more important to find a reliable measuring device that would serve exactly this purpose. When buying pH meters and measuring devices make sure that it fits all your requirements and that it is of high quality.
Here are a few things to consider when buying digital pH meters.
Since the device will be used to measure pH levels, you will need one that is highly accurate and can provide an exact measurement of the pH levels in the hydroponic system. As much as possible try to find one that has accuracy to 0.002 pH units.
If you have a high accuracy rate out of your pH meter, you’ll be able to provide a sufficient amount of nutrients to your plants for faster growth and better health. In case you’re providing an inaccurate pH levels for your plants, you will be putting them at risk.
Likewise, it is also important to consider a pH meter with 2-point calibration. With regards to the accuracy, it can only be attained if the pH meter is calibrated. The process of calibrating the pH meter is done by using 3 known standard solutions which are the pH4, 7 and 10.
Each of these standard solutions refers to acidity and is usually color-coded to make it easier to identify. The corresponding colors are red, yellow and blue in order.
The type or style of electrode out of your digital pH meter should also be considered before making a purchase. You need to choose an electrode that is specific to the purpose that you have in mind.
Say if you’re looking to use the pH meter over a solution that can be corrosive then it would be best to opt for standard glass-tipped electrode. At the same time if you’re dealing with a solution that can clog the tips of the electrode, you can go for the clog-free electrode options.
There are many types of electrodes for pH meters and each of them corresponds directly to the specific purpose where you will be using them.
Of course, just like any equipment or tools you would want your digital pH meter to be durable and can last a long time. The digital pH meter should be able to withstand any kind of environment under any condition.
It should be able to withstand corrosive substances as well as varying temperatures.
If you’re looking to have the results over to your computer or laptop, it would be convenient to have a digital pH meter with computer connectivity features. This is especially important if you’re trying to make a number of pH level samples and looking to study the results over your computer.
While this may be a great feature out of your pH meter, it could also cost you quite a lot.
Now that you have a better picture of your ideal digital pH meter, let us now look at your best options in the market today. Each of these options is carefully handpicked based on critical criteria such as efficiency, durability, features and as per recommendations from customers.
The Oakton EcoTestr pH Tester could also be worth your money if you want a waterproof as well as dustproof and pocket-sized pH tester.
Nobody wants to carry around a bulky and heavy equipment every time he or she wants to test the pH levels of a hydroponic system. This is the main feature of this product. It is designed to be compact and small to make it easy to carry around anytime and anywhere.
Also, this product is waterproof as well as dustproof to enable longer life and to ensure that the circuits inside the equipment are safe. Unlike other pH testers this product immediately floats when dropped in water solutions therefore allowing convenient and clean readings.
While this product is used to measure pH levels out of hydroponic systems, it can also measure the temperature of the system. Also, it can easily be calibrated and comes with push-button calibration settings.
It comes with a transparent cap that constantly keeps the sensor moist and keeps it from contamination.
One edge that this product has over others is that it comes with an integral sensor that is long-lasting and can measure temperatures ranges of 0 – 50 degrees Celsius.
One popular digital pH meter for hydroponics that is also a favorite by many professionals is the Jellas Pocket-Sized PH Meter for its rather smaller size compared to its competitions.
This pH meter comes with a pocket-sized design which allows you to carry and bring this equipment anywhere you go. Also, it is very light with only 1.76 oz. for its total weight.
A thing that I like about this pH meter is its high accuracy despite its size. It can measure pH levels of up to 0-14 pH with 0.1 resolutions. It is also designed with an LCD display for fast and clear readings.
This product is also much easier to use compared to its competitions. Simply remove the cap then immerse the tool in the solution then flip the switch to start reading.
While it is easy to use, it is also easy to calibrate for specific solutions. Simply follow the instructions available in the package on how to calibrate the product.
It is designed with a glass probe for more accurate and sensitive reading. You should be careful when handling this however since it can be fragile.
The MoonCity 3-in-1 Soil Tester Kit could also be an excellent choice for measuring pH levels of your soil. While this product can be used in soil environments, it can also be used in hydroponics.
In addition to measuring the pH levels of the soil or hydroponic system, it can also measure moisture as well light. Simply plug in the probe and let it do the reading.
This product is also a popular choice of both the beginners and professionals because while it very easy to use, it delivers highly accurate readings. Unlike other pH testers and meters available today, this product doesn’t require power such as batteries or electricity.
Just like the previous choice in this list, this product is also compact and is designed to be used anytime and anywhere. Also, another good thing about this product is that it requires no maintenance and is very easy to acquire locally.
If you want a durable pH tester that can be used indoors and outdoors, this product could be worth investing in.
The Bluelab pH Pen could also be a worth it investment if you want a pH tester or meter that provides accurate readings on pH levels as well as temperatures.
This is yet another crowd favorite because it delivers highly accurate readings for adequate plant nutrition. While this product is mostly used to measure the pH levels of a hydroponic system, it also measures the current temperature of the system.
One edge that this product has over its competitions is that it is waterproof. Once soaked in a solution or once plugged in the ground, it does not absorb any moisture. With its waterproof feature, water does not seep through its circuits and inner components thus also making this product last longer than its competitions.
While this product is used in hydroponics, it can also be used on soil environments. Also, it has a durable construction which ensures a lengthy life of use.
Its probe is designed with a cap with sponge to enable moisture on every use. Also, this product comes with a 1 year product warranty.
Another portable as well as waterproof pH meter and tester that I personally recommend is the Bluelab Combo pH Meter.
Unlike others, this product provides reading not only on pH levels as well as temperature levels on a solution but also its conductivity. The same with other nutrients required by plants, the conductivity is also an essential contributing factor to a healthy and quick-growing plant.
This product can also be easily calibrated to specific settings and adjustments required by the plants. As well, it is lightweight and portable for easy and fast use anytime and anywhere.
It is designed with a large LCD display for clear and easy reading. While it is easy to use, it can also be calibrated with ease by simply pushing a button.
In case the probe gets worn out or is damaged, the package comes with a replacement pH probe for immediate replacement. With this, you save more on your probe purchase and you can work continuously seeing that a replacement probe is readily available.
Furthermore, the package comes with a pair of triple A batteries for fast set up as soon as you receive the package.
All these options are indeed reliable in measuring pH levels as well as other nutrients in a hydroponic system and they are tried and tested with regards to accuracy as well as durability.
A personal favorite of mine in this list is the Oakton EcoTestr pH Tester because while it is an affordable choice of pH meter or tester, it provides the same impressive features which the more expensive options do.
So which digital pH meter in this list works best for your needs? For questions, comments and suggestions, you can message us through our comment box below. Give us a message and we’ll get back right to you right away.
My name is Emily Taylor, gardening is my passion and I’m looking forward to sharing it with everyone. I know that there are millions of people out there want their backyard and garden be attractive just like their front yard, so I am here to help you create your own backyard paradise.