How to Raise KH in Aquarium? Complete Guide

How to Raise KH in Aquarium

In this article we explain KH and its importance to the aquarium and we show how to Raise KH in Aquarium water. We also address GH and pH as all these water measurements are interrelated.

KH is also known as Carbonate Hardness. Its the parameter which can change the most on a daily basis in an aquarium or pond. Carbonate hardness blocks natural acidity and stabilizes pH levels in fish ponds. KH increases and stabilizes the pH.

The greater the KH, the more resistant the aquarium water will be to pH changes. Having a higher KH should prevent large pH swings in your tank over time.

If your tank’s KH level is below 4.5 dKH, you should pay special attention to your tank’s pH. It is advisable to test weekly, until you understand how stable the pH is.

Understanding pH, KH and GH

Aquarium enthusiasts all understand the importance of having stable water parameter to ensure a healthy ecosystem for their fish. Correct water chemistry will ensure the health of your fish and by keeping the water within parameters mortality rates of fish will be reduced. pH, GH, and KH are water parameter measurements you will become familiar with.


pH stands for Power of Hydrogen. pH gauges the Hydrogen Ions in your aquarium. It shows acidity and alkalinity. pH is measured on a scale of 0-14. High pH means alkaline, low pH means acidic and a reading of 7 is neutral.

Different fish have different tolerances of pH. Most aquarium fish thrive in a neutral pH water of somewhere between 6.5 and 8.

Small fluctuations in pH will cause no harm to your fish, however, a big spike in pH levels is harmful.


The KH (carbonate hardness) measures the carbonate and bicarbonate ions in your aquarium. KH is  the ability of water to keep the pH stable (buffering capacity). KH neutralizes the acids present in the aquarium water. This prevents the pH from crashing. pH crashes can harm and potentially kill your fish.

An inadequate buffering capacity is indicated by A low KH level and results in fast pH swings. Whilst, if the KH is high, your aquarium water has a higher buffering capacity, making it harder to change the pH level.

The ideal KH level for a freshwater aquarium is somewhere between 4 – 8 dKH or 70-140 ppm.


GH refers to the general hardness of the water.  It is a reading telling you the amount of calcium and magnesium ions present in the water. GH measures the ‘hardness’ or ‘softness’ of your water. It is recommended to have a GH level between 4 – 8 dGH. A low GH can affect the health of plants and fish.

How are pH, KH and GH related?

Although pH, KH, and GH are measurements of specific ions, they are interrelated and all play a part in balancing water chemistry. When minerals are added to the aquarium, they release many ions that affect water parameters.

Limestone, for example, contains a higher level of calcium carbonate. By having both calcium and carbonate ions, you raise both GH and KH when added. Salt mixes specifically created to raise either GH or KH can be purchased.

KH is directly effects pH. It buffers the pH, preventing it from changing rapidly. pH levels tend to decrease in fish aquariums over time. By raising the KH more acids are neutralized, and pH stays higher.

For example, by adding a buffering agent such as crushed coral to a tank with a higher pH level will only raise the KH, not the pH value. Yet, by adding crushed coral to lower pH water will increase both pH and KH values.

If the KH in your aquarium falls, you need to increase the carbonates and bicarbonates in the tank. Commercially prepared alkalinity buffers can be purchased and can be used to raise the KH in your freshwater aquariums. These products make it easy.

Crushed coral combined with aragonite is a perfect alkalinity buffer. The advantage is that it changes KH slowly and steadily.

Why is KH important to your aquarium?

pH Fluctuations

The main benefit of having higher KH levels is its effect on pH. KH inhibits pH levels from becoming to low (extremely acidic). It also stabilizes pH, preventing pH crashes and excessive fluctuations. A rapid change in pH affects many aquarium species. Chemical parameters such as pH are crucial to aquatic life in aquariums and ponds.

KH and marine aquariums

KH is important when it comes to corals in saltwater aquariums.

Corals can survive a broad range of Phosphate levels, however, if the KH is too low for an extended period, all aquarium corals will die.

KH naturally reduces with time due to natural processes and coral growth. When its level is low this can contribute to the pH being low. The ideal KH value for a reef aquarium is between 8 & 12 (3 – 5 meq/l).

A low KH can be corrected by adding Reef Builder or Seachem Reef Carbonate.

KH Influence On Plant Growth In A Freshwater Aquarium

With aquarium plants, the preference for alkalinity is not always discussed.

KH has no real benefit to plants (neither does it harm plants). However, KH affects pH, and a high or low pH may not be suitable for certain species of aquarium plants.

Carbonate hardness stabilizes water quality, so its influence is natural. The number of aquarium plants that survive in very soft water is relatively low.

High pH levels can impede the uptake of nutrients by plants.

Soft water plants prefer higher temperatures and lower KH. Hard water plants with moderate pH preferences can still survive at low KH levels.

How to raise KH in aquarium water

1. Potassium Bi-Carbonate

Understanding how to raise KH in aquarium water is quite simple. In a planted aquarium this is best done by adding KH2CO3 or K2CO3 (Potassium bi-carbonate/carbonate). A double benefit is that the potassium acts as fertilizer for plants as well.

  • 3.5 gms of KHCO3 in 100 litres (26 gals) of water raises KH by 1 dKH.
  • 2.5 gms of K2CO3 in 100 litres (26 gals) of water raises KH by 1 dKH.

2. Limestone or coral chips

Another simple method to raise the KH levels is by putting pieces of limestone into the filter, the sump or into the tank. Coral chips in a bag work well, although we recommend limestone over coral chips as larger stone is easier to handle and remove.

Tanks with limestone naturally have higher KH levels. The quality of the limestone/coral chips will determine how quickly the KH will rise. Usually from 0 to 10 within a week.

3. Dolomite Rock

Dolomite rock (CaMgCo3) can also slowly raise and maintain a steady KH in your tank. It gradually releases magnesium, calcium, and carbonate in your aquarium. These elements cause the KH to rise. An advantage of dolomite rock is its appearance that looks great as a substrate. This option is ideal for aquariums that require a constant high KH.

4. Aragonite

Aragonite is another natural carbonate mineral that is aquarium fish safe. This mineral provides a constant source of KH enhancer. Smaller tanks require smaller pieces of aragonite and larger tanks, more. Place in the tank or in the sump tank.

5. Soda Ash

With saltwater tanks use Soda ash. Soda ash is not suitable for freshwater as it releases excess sodium into the water in mineral form. Add small quantities over a period as it will instantly raise the KH and pH in an aquarium. Test and monitor the water with a KH test kit  to ensure the level is not too excessive.

6. Baking Soda

To increase the KH without raising the GH, you can add sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3), commonly known as baking soda. By adding one teaspoon per 50 liters (13 gallons) raises the KH by about 4 dH.

7. Water changes

Conducting water changes by removing a third of the tank’s water and replacing with a water source high in KH will help gradually increase KH. Many tap water sources are quite high in KH. Always test the water so that you know what you are adding.

How to Raise KH in Aquarium

What is the ideal KH level for aquariums?

KH is measured based on dKH (degree KH) and ppm (parts/Million, 1dKH equals 17.9 ppm of calcium carbonate per liter). Each fish species has its specific KH value requirement.

  • Brackish water: 10 – 18 dKH
  • Planted aquarium: 3 – 8 dKH
  • Shrimp aquarium: 2 – 5 dKH
  • Cichlid aquarium: 10 – 18 dKH
  • Pond: 4 – 8 dKH
  • Discus aquarium: 3 – 8 dKH
  • Tropical fish aquarium: 4 – 8 dKH
  • Marine reef aquarium: 8 – 12 dKH


How to decrease KH?

There are several ways to decrease KH levels in the aquarium. Increase the tannin in the water by adding Indian Almond leaves (particularly when housing Betta fish), or by using peat. As the leaves or peat break down in the water they gradually begin to use up the KH, this lowering it.

Another method is to mix distilled water with the tank or tap water. Distilled water contains no minerals, therefore no KH. By blending it with the tank water KH levels are reduced.

Having an abundance of aquarium plants will help reduce KH when used with a buffer. These buffers are typically utilized by the live plants to reduce the excessive CO2 from aquarium water. Plants use the buffer to convert KH to CO2.

Products to Increase KH Comparison Table

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How To Test And Measure KH In An Aquarium?

Carbonate hardness can be easily measured using KH-based tests. Ensure you have a quality test kit for your specific aquarium (marine or freshwater). Set up a schedule for water tests, being prepared if water adjustments need to be made.

Test pH and water hardness (GH) at the same time.

The greatest fluctuations in water chemistry usually occur when new water is introduced to the tank after cleaning or during part water changes. It is recommended to test the water you introduce. If the KH is above acceptable levels, use the suggestions above on how to raise KH in aquarium water, to correct them.


How to Raise KH in Aquarium


FAQ – How to raise KH in aquarium water?

Will increasing KH increase my pH?

Yes, they are related. In general, a higher KH will result in a higher pH. The pH will also be more stable (reduced fluctuations).

What causes KH to drop in a freshwater aquarium?

KH can drop as the rate at which acids are being produced in the tank is accelerated. The acids ‘eat’ at the water’s carbonates/bicarbonates.

Having too many fish, or adding too many at once can increase acids. Ammonia build-up due to fish wastes, excess food and organic matter decomposition also increase acids. Once KH levels are too low for pH stability, the aquarium will likely have a pH crash.

What affect do frequent water changes have on KH?

As fish wastes build up in a tank, so does the acid level, thus reducing KH. Periodic partial water changes remove the polluted water, replacing it with new clean water. This will restore the KH level.

If you have a larger tank that has a good biological filter and a sump tank, the need for water changes will be far less. The beneficial bacteria in a ‘cycled’ tank will eliminate the nitrates and ammonia from the water. Smaller tanks will require regular water changes.

Also, the water you add during a water change will often have a higher KH. This will be determined by where the water is sourced from.

What happens when there is too much CO2?

CO2 supplementation can provide vital nutritious energy for the beautiful growth of different aquatic plant species. Adding CO2 to the aquarium lowers carbonate levels, causing acidification in your aquarium. Having a high KH will prevent problems and keep the pH at an acceptable level.

What happens when the aquarium is overcrowded?

Inherently, unstable conditions occur when aquariums are overcrowded. Fish waste will cause acidification causing KH levels to drop, risking a pH crash. A drop will cause your fish to stress and the less hardy species will start to die.

Having enough water in your aquarium is the best method to improve the health and stability of your aquarium. Using a sump tank will increase its volume. In addition, efficient biological filters will allow for higher stocking rates.

How to Raise KH in Aquarium?

How to reduce hardness in aquariums?

The difference between KH and GH.

Carbonate hardness (KH) is measured by measuring the amount of carbonate and bicarbonate in water.

Whilst GH is a measure of dissolved magnesium and calcium ions. This is what people usually mean when they refer too water being “soft” or “hard”. Generally, plants and most tropical fish and shrimp do best in a dH range of 4-8 dH (degree hardness). This is considered somewhat soft.

Tap water can have both high GH and low KH, therefore, not always ideal for your fish.

How to soften water?

In order to reduce the hardness of water use peat moss or drift wood. This process works by binding calcium and magnesium ions. It will also release tannic and gallic acid into the water. These acids attack and degrade bicarbonates in the fish aquarium, thus further reducing the carbonate levels and the waters PH level.

Place the peat inside the aquarium filter to allow for maximum flow through the peat.

Alternatively, clean rain water is considered ‘soft’ and can be mixed with tank water to reduce hardness.

Final Thoughts – How to raise KH in aquarium water?

The secret to keeping aquatic live healthy, stress free with a strong immune system is to ensure they have optimal water. Keeping water parameters balanced and within the best range for the species of life in your tank is important.

Understanding KH, pH and GH, and scheduling in regular water tests, will ensure that you are alerted to any water issues. Knowing this will provide peace of mind and will likely save you from much heart-ache.

Understanding how to raise KH in aquarium water is core to maintaining steady pH and keeping water hardness within parameters.



How to Safely Lower pH in Your Aquarium ( Best Working Methods )

Lower pH in Your Aquarium

When making a new aquarium, we all must try to control, among other factors, the pH before adding fish. Tap water can be slightly alkaline, but it’s usually suitable for many fish you buy at the pet store. Most captive-bred fish are resilient, tolerate a wide range of Lower pH in Aquarium, and tap water is generally suitable for all of them.

What is pH in aquariums?

In chemistry, pH is a scale used to specify the acidity or basicity of a solution. It is scored in dots, ranging from 0 to 10, where 0 is the most acidic and ten the most basic, where each number has its scale plus 10 points. To measure it, we use our aquarium tests, which can be digital or manual. The pH can affect a significant change in the entire ecosystem of the pond. The pH in your aquarium is not a fixed variable; it can fluctuate depending on environmental conditions such as temperature, amount of organic matter, oxygenation, etc.

pH in your home aquarium

Understandably, some people might find it challenging and sometimes frustrating to maintain pH in an aquarium. I keep the parameters correct and stable; in addition to being more beautiful and showy, your fish will also be able to survive longer in your tank. This article shows you everything you need to know to lower and control the pH level in an aquarium. The pH in the aquarium is a critical part of keeping your animals active for aquarium survival and health.

Controlling the pH in home aquariums

There are a few ways to control the pH of aquarium water. Some acids affect the aquarium water instantly, which is not ideal. Never change pH values too quickly as this can harm or kill your fish; the pH should be raised slowly; the longer it takes, the less parameter shock your fish will feel. Make sure you understand the pH of tap water and your pets’ requirements to make adjustments to freshwater before putting it in the pond. Also, check the quality of the aquarium water. This knowledge is essential for your pets’ healthy environment.

Some tips

Test the aquarium pH frequently, whenever you can; that way, you will understand what causes the variations. Add fish and plants capable of handling large pH ranges and different types of water such as Guppies, Bettas, Java Fern, and Anubias. If you prefer to keep fish acidic, you can take steps that will slowly acidify the water, such as adding driftwood or peat moss. Buy a reverse osmosis filter if you have a constant problem with fundamental water.

Lower pH in Your Aquarium

What causes the pH to rise in a freshwater aquarium?

Several factors increase the ph in your aquarium. Ph is formed from minerals found dispersed in water. Tap water with lots of traces of phosphorus and silicates added to a tank and often added carbonates will cause its ph to rise to more alkaline sides. Be careful with the material used as substrate; some sand and rocks can be limestone and release many minerals in your water. Be aware of some commercial brands of substrates that may contain chemical substances that primarily affect water. Other causes include malfunctioning filtration systems and some fish-generated products.

How often should I test pH in an aquarium?

When your fish get sick or die, it’s essential to check your aquarium’s pH levels. This check should be done regularly so you can ensure the pH is kept constant in your tanks. Remember to clean the tank, change the water, and remove the dirt that accumulates at the bottom. Glass cleaner can be found in virtually every pet store. The vital thing is to replace some water and vacuum the wastes from the substrate using a siphon. The makeup water must have the ideal parameters stabilized, correctly treated, and free from chlorine and other substances.

Why is it necessary to lower the pH in an aquarium?

The default pH is ideal for your fish, remembering that seven is neutral. There are many reasons why the pH level of your aquarium water has increased, and you may need to lower it. The most common reasons for this are mineral residues deposited in your water. It is essential to check whether phosphates in tap water tend to carbonate when added to your aquarium. One of the causes of lowered pH levels is usually the failure of the filtration system. If the filter fails, you may have to deal with accumulated ammonia that will likely increase your tank’s pH.

When is it necessary to lower the pH in an aquarium?

Many fish and plants survive in their places of origin under narrow and stable water quality parameter conditions and parameters. If you keep Tetras, Discus, Angelfish, Rasbora, and other animals from the tropical equatorial region like South America or Asia, most will thrive at a lower pH (acidic). While some captive-grown aquarium fish aren’t as picky, you get better color and breeding behavior with the proper pH balance. As tap water tends to have dissolved minerals, it’s easier to keep tanks slightly alkaline, but turning it down and controlling it can turn out to be easy.

The proper pH of freshwater aquarium

Some fish do well with a minimum of 5.5, while others are much more comfortable with a little more alkalinity. It is not a static factor in most aquariums and can constantly change, which is not ideal. Sometimes you will need to increase or decrease concentrations. As most water faucets are generally alkaline, it is always worth checking and seeing what is recommended for your fish and plants. If you had a lot of species, like in a community tank, your goal should be to get your tank around neutral, i.e., 7.0. African cichlids and species such as goldfish are resistant and require a higher pH, not fully adapting to acidic pHs.

Lower pH in Your Aquarium

How do I lower the pH in my aquarium?

If you find your pH above the recommended ideal level, then we give you the best tips on how you can safely re-regulate it. This should be done by slowly reducing the PH to the optimal level.

Reverse Osmosis

With the use of selective semi-permeable filters, all unwanted particles are removed from the water using RO. An RO water filter can filter, using membranes, by reducing only heavy ions that modify the chemistry of the water. Even though you may find this method too expensive, reverse osmosis is considered the most effective way to lower the pH in a fish tank with an accuracy that other techniques cannot achieve. Using this method can ensure that the pH levels in storage tanks are continuously at the perfect concentration. Note that the filter itself is extensive, so they are only suitable for larger tanks.

Add driftwood to the aquarium.

Driftwood chunks can help to lower the pH through their production of large amounts of tannin and humic acids. Boiling the wood before adding it to the setup will destroy any harmful fungus or algae that might affect the tank. Although driftwood does not release anything toxic or pollute the water, it is always important to sanitize it properly. This can reduce the color of tea that it may eventually release. If you don’t want the tea color in your water, you can add chemical media to your aquarium, like activated carbon.

Reduce aeration in the tank

The last and most basic way to lower the pH in an aquarium is to reduce the oxygen content. There are certain circumstances where a low oxygen concentration in water results in a low pH. Even after performing all the necessary steps, it is imperative to constantly check the parameters so that nothing gets out of control. Although this method is highly economical, it has to be adapted for the animals in your aquarium; You have to be careful as fish need oxygen to survive, which can cause fish to die if you lower their level to more than necessary. This is a way to lower your tank’s pH level.

Add almond leaves/Catappa

Almond leaves also have medicinal properties, tannins, and acids. This can cure some conditions and even inhibit certain types of fish diseases. They will give your aquarium a natural look. Be sure to wash the leaves first and then add them to the tank as, like driftwood, they can change the color of the water. The color given off by leaves and peat is the same as that of driftwood, but it may appear less dark in the case of leaves.

Perform a periodic partial water change

Even in sizeable 55-gallon fish tanks, it is necessary to change parts of the water regularly; this way, the water in the aquarium will always have a stable pH and get rid of pollutants and toxins that filtration cannot remove. During any cleaning, in addition to the water change, you should also clean the tank walls and decorations and siphon the substrate to remove debris, algae, and unwanted dirt in the tank.

Add Peat Moss

One of the most common and well-known natural ways to lower water pH in a tropical fish aquarium is by adding peat, which has great potential to supply acids and tannins. Peat makes the water dark, with a yellow tint. To determine the correct amount to use, perform regular pH tests.

Other ways of lowering pH in an aquarium

Here are some known and practical techniques to lower the pH safely; if done correctly, they should give good results.

Add Carbon-Dioxide

Carbon dioxide causes a drop in pH when injected into the aquarium water, which is quite simple. You can also get good results if you add organic matter such as soybean, cottonseed, or crushed cotton; this must be done by performing successive tests and with extreme caution. This is because organic matter creates carbon dioxide in water. It is important to remember that carbon dioxide lowering the pH is a very safe technique because it minimizes the pH slowly. You can pump carbon dioxide artificially to get the same result, but be careful not to do something to the tank as well as the fish, and be sure to monitor your pH changes closely.

How do I lower pH in an aquarium with vinegar?

Follow our complete guide to lowering the pH in water with vinegar. The decrease in pH by vinegar depends on the pH and hardness of the water to be modified. The amount of vinegar needed depends on other factors such as impurities in your aquarium (heavy metals), toxins, water hardness, and carbonates. Don’t add all the vinegar to your tanks at once because it lowers the pH instantly, and this causes problems for the fish and your system as a whole. Lowering the pH levels in a tank using vinegar is a simple solution, but other organic methods that allow similar results are safer.

Can vinegar be used to lower pH in a freshwater aquarium?

It will certainly reduce the pH of your freshwater aquariums. Use white vinegar made with commercial distillation if white vinegar has a percentage of 2.55 to 5% of acetic acid.

Is vinegar safe to use to change the pH in a freshwater aquarium?

It’s safe to use vinegar for changing pH at freshwater aquariums. You must learn vinegar affects water. Check the pH level of your tank before try lowering its values.

How much vinegar to lower Ph in aquarium?

To lower pH in the aquarium, apply 100 ml of vinegar per gallon of water. This measurement system has been shown to reduce the pH of the tank.

How do I keep my aquarium ph low and stable?

After lowering the ph in your aquarium, you will need to stabilize that ph. Here are some measures to help keep the ph low and stable.

Clean and maintain your fish tank.

The accumulation of nitrogen compounds in the water can be toxic to fish due to the pH of the pond. Consequently, waste nitrates and phosphates can also cause more alkaline pH concerns. Clean your aquarium weekly, perform a partial water change, and clean and siphon dirt and food debris. Don’t forget to stabilize the pH of the new water with the aquarium parameters. Use your mains water; if it is too hard and alkaline, you can adjust it by mixing it with water from an RO filter. You can ask your regional water supplier for a water content analyzer. Remember to vacuum the substrate as it is essential for good system hygiene.

Check your filters regularly and keep them clean.

If not cleaned for long periods, the filter will fail. Thoroughly clean each component and wash them under running water. Periodically replace the sponge cartridge and carbon filters. Your filters must never be dirty or clogged with particles, and any elements not included in the filters must be removed. Cleaning your aquarium water filter depends on the type of filter and the amount of dirt, relying solely on your system as a whole. You should check all the necessary parts to ensure your filters fail, such as filter inputs and outputs.

One final tip on lowering the pH

What couldn’t be emphasized enough is: don’t significantly lower the pH all at once. It would be best if you were particularly careful when making parameter adjustments in a small aquarium, as changing the pH level of the water doesn’t require a lot of acidifiers. Half a cap full of commercial acidifier is enough to spoil a 5-gallon tank. Fish and plants vary dramatically in how well they tolerate pH adjustments, but always be on the cautious side. If using chemical media, adjust 10-20% of the water volume daily until the pH is where you want it. Many natural pH control methods can cause a slow change over time when done correctly, so they are safer.


There are several ways to achieve a single goal; some are easier and provide better pH control results than others. However, it is essential to maintain the ideal pH in your aquariums. You can choose any medium described above according to your requirements or potential capability. It doesn’t matter which method you choose with more natural alternatives like Catappa leaves or using a less realistic option like using vinegar – whatever your preferences, you should go for it to find the right solutions.

Top 10 Best pH Meters – Latest Picks in 2023 (Reviews & Guide)

Top 10 Best pH Meters – Latest Picks in 2023 (Reviews & Guide)

If you take a look at the world of the Best pH meters, you will see that they have many uses. A pH meter is useful for both brewers and aquarium enthusiasts.

Beyond that, pH meters are useful for hydroponics, optimizing soil / water quality and laboratory use. It is usually easy to find a pH meter. Depending on the use, it is necessary to find affordable options.

Comparison Table

If you take a closer look at the best pH meters, you’ll find that these products are specially made to suit a number of practical uses. Such a device is useful for brewers and for those interested in the hobby of the aquarium.

In addition to the fact that this product plays a vital role in maximizing soil and optimizing water quality, it is also practical for use in laboratories and hydroponics. It goes without saying that it can be useful in many different applications, making it a smart investment that will pay off in the end.

Fortunately, this device is available immediately, and depending on your usage, you can look for countless options at reasonable prices. However, sometimes having numerous options can complicate the entire buying process; This is why consumers are encouraged to check out the buying guides discussed in this post for some helpful tips that could reduce the burden of buying the right device for you.

Based on that, you can also take a closer look at the different products listed below so that you get ideas on what to look for when buying one. Take a look to reflect on each product’s valuable features and weigh the pros and cons of each option to make sure you’re making the right investment.


Advantage of using the Best pH meter

Today, you can find many devices for measuring the pH level of something. But when you look around, it’s easy to see why one pH meter is better than the others.

There are many benefits to using a pH meter on a test strip or some other form of measurement.

One of the main reasons is that a pH meter is much more accurate than a strip tester. Once the instrument is calibrated, it gives you a simple understandable reading. There is really no room for doubt or confusion.

Using a pH meter is also very objective compared to reading a color test strip. These strips tend to vary by color and brand, so getting a read depends on how you think the colors are.

A pH meter simply gives you a simple number that is easy to understand and the same across the board.

A pH meter also has the advantage of being reusable. You don’t have to throw it away after just one use like most pH measuring tools.

You can measure with just one meter as many times as you want, saving money and convenience.


The 10 best pH meters for your money


An important deciding factor when it comes to buying a pH meter is accuracy and sensitivity. Here is a list of the most accurate pH meters available on the market today.

Best pH meters reviews

1. KoolaMo Digital pH Meter Water Quality Tester

Best pH Meters

First on the list is the KoolaMo digital pH meter. This first competitor has excellent qualities, making it a great choice for new buyers. It works as a water thermometer and a pH meter.

The KoolaMo digital pH meter is self-sufficient. It is easily calibrated with just one touch and doesn’t take long. Provides instant pH readings for both temperature and water quality.

This pH meter also has its amazing low price, this is definitely an option for those who want to save money.

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2. VIVOSUN pH and TDS Meter Combo

Best pH Meters

This TDS pH meter is certainly a very practical option that can be used in a wide range of applications. Compared to other similar products, it is not bulky, fairly easy to use and handle, and does a good job of reading TDS and pH in almost any liquid, such as soil and water. You will also be surprised by its portability and ease of use.

Once purchased, it is protected by a protective cover; It is a useful device that can also be used for swimming pools and aquariums. If you prefer fast and reliable reads, this one won’t disappoint you. This is inexpensive and gives users the high accuracy they were looking for.

These are a must because they are easy to use and the results are clearly displayed on the LCD screens. If you wish, you can also test the soil pH by simply dissolving a sample in water.

However, some of the weaknesses that can be observed with this device are its inability to stay calibrated and each tool requires a battery. Before getting this, be sure to consider these factors.

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3. Apera Instruments PH20 Value pH Meter

Best pH Meters

Test the pH of swimming pools and spas, hydroponics, beer, wine and more with this versatile and compact device. Apera Instruments AI209 is one of the most reliable pocket pH meters you can find on the market today. Judging by how positively customers have reacted, we can safely say that it is also among the best options you can buy, especially if you need a precise device.

Say goodbye to messy and complicated user interfaces, as this alternative is as simple as possible to use. With easy automatic calibration using buffer recognition and compensation to ensure accuracy at varying temperatures, you get a product that is easy to use and provides only the most accurate information.

To assist you further, with built-in automatic recognition and stable value system, the consistency of the data you receive will be improved so that you don’t have to guess when to manually take the measurement.

In addition, you will also have great battery life as you can get 2000 hours of continuous operation. It’s safe to say that you never have to worry about your device dying when you need it most.

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4. Pop V Digital pH Meter

Best pH Meters

Next up is the Pop V digital pH meter. This pH meter stands out from other meters by its excellent quality and craftsmanship. This meter is suitable for use in swimming pools, aquariums, hydroponics, and food and beer production.

One of the main good qualities of the pH meter is the great ease it creates for the user. It is portable and very light. You can easily put it in your bag or backpack for carrying and traveling.

This also comes with a carrying case and a bright LCD reading light for readings. There is also a one year warranty and money back guarantee for buyers.

A negative point of the Pop V digital meter is that the instructions are vague. If you’ve never used a pH meter, especially a digital one, this is particularly tricky. Calibration and the use of a pH meter are not recommended unless you know what you are doing.

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5. Dr.meter High Accuracy Pocket Size pH Meter

Best pH Meters


Good to know that this device is perceived as one of the most accurate pH meters. What really sets it apart from the rest is its ability to ensure superior accuracy and immediate response. It is manufactured with a high quality, superior precision electrode and algorithm chip which makes it an excellent choice for testing solution quality.

This device features a 3-point calibration approach provided with simple methods. It is designed with automatic temperature compensation and automatic calibration. You can find out the quality of the liquid immediately with the help of a one-button lockout reading function. It’s a little expensive, but considering its great features, you couldn’t ask for more.

However, this device is a little tricky to calibrate and the temperature setting won’t change from C to F. These are some of the downsides to keep in mind when choosing this product.

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6. Apera Instruments SX610 pH Meter Pen Tester Waterproof

With simple one-button operation, Apera Instruments SX610 pH Pen Tester is a reliable measuring device that can easily fit into a thin container, such as a test tube.

This is a cost-effective option if you need to regularly perform pH tests, including aquaculture, hydroponics, and water treatment for different locations, such as swimming pools, spas, or brewing facilities.

Since the pH probe is replaceable, this makes it particularly suitable for educational purposes. The instrument is supplied with a complete kit of calibration and storage solutions, as well as lithium batteries, all contained in a practical case.

One of the things that sets this product apart is its waterproof construction, which means that even if it falls into the water by accident, it floats and you can easily retrieve it. In addition, the Easy Auto Calibration function and intelligent functions that allow the user to switch between ËšF and ËšC make this device easy to use.

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7. Sonkir Soil pH Meter MS02 Tester Gardening Tool Kits

If you want something for gardening, the Sonkir Soil pH Meter is right for you. This pH meter helps you measure soil and water pH levels. This allows specific levels of acidity and alkalinity to be achieved for plants.

This combines many functions into one. This meter will let you know if the soil is in good condition. It also tells you if your plant needs more sunlight and water.

The Sonkir Soil pH Meter comes with a one year warranty and can be used both indoors and outdoors. It has a very intuitive design that does not require batteries.

The only downside that can be said about this meter is its accuracy. The accuracy of the readings tends to fluctuate a bit. Your readings may deviate by a few points.

This may not be a big deal for some plant owners, but it really depends on the type of plant you have. Some plants require very specific conditions, while others are more forgiving.

If you are looking for something very specific, try a different option.

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8. Apera Instruments Waterproof pH Pocket Tester Kit

Currently, there are countless pH meters sold on the market; however, not all of them can provide you with the kind of accuracy you are looking for. So if you really want to get accurate readings when analyzing water, this device can work like a charm for your needs.

Likewise, this pH meter is designed with automatic temperature compensation which aims to provide accuracy at different temperatures. It is built with a large LCD screen featuring a total of three backlit colors which are intended to illustrate different modes; dual display of pH and temperature and some reminders of constant readings as well as calibrations performed.

Regardless, this device appears to be flimsy, so its long-lasting service appears to be questionable and it has a high cost of selling that would definitely be an issue for those on a budget. Make sure you take these small complaints into consideration before making your final purchase decision.

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9. Jellas Pocket Size pH Meter Digital Water Quality Tester

If you want the best pH meter for brewing, the Jellas ™ pocket size is for you. This device is a fantastic Mini Water Quality Tester for aquariums and swimming pools with its extended range from 0 to 14.0 pH, making it suitable for a wide variety of applications.

The resolution of 0.1 pH ensures reliable accuracy. This device is designed to be easily carried in your pocket for on-the-go testing in wine and beer production, hydroponic systems, swimming pool or aquarium, and drinking water. The LCD screen clearly shows the readings. Extremely easy to use, the device has a protective cap that is simply removed so that the electrodes can be immersed in the solution.

Eliminating the need for often messy litmus strips, the device weighs just 1.76 ounces and has dimensions of just 5.94 x 1.22 x 0.79 inches for easy portability. The supplied carrying case further simplifies portability while providing easy storage.

The device also comes with a calibration screwdriver that ensures consistently accurate measurements, along with two calibration buffer powders and a user manual to familiarize you with the product features. The protective cap protects the electrodes from damage and is easy to remove before testing. This durable product features high quality construction for years of use. The convenient LCD display allows quick and reliable reading of the measurements.

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10. Bluelab 716441 Combo Meter for Plant Germination

Last but not least, we have the Bluelab Combo Meter for plant germination. This pH meter is also more plant oriented than water oriented. Combine some different measurements in one device.

The Bluelab combo meter is used to measure pH, conductivity and temperature levels. It’s a three-in-one combination! This saves you money and time in the long run from having to purchase additional devices for these tests.

The Bluelab combo meter has a large, easy-to-read display and comes with its own batteries. Speaking of batteries, it comes with a low battery warning so you know when it’s time to change them.

One important thing to mention about this meter is that the probe is very sensitive. You have to be very careful how you use it so as not to damage the delicate design.

This may not be a suitable option for durable equipment unless you are careful.

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How to use a pH meter step by step?

Once you’ve chosen the type of pH meter you need, it’s time to learn how to use it.

Each pH meter is slightly different from the next. The best way to find out how to use a specific meter is to look at the instructions.

  • A general step-by-step way to use a pH meter starts with calibrating the meter. Begin the calibration process by collecting your solutions and the probe from the pH electrode.
  • After collecting the materials, clean the electrode probe with deionized water. Then dry with a handkerchief.
  • Add the electrode probe to a pH 7 solution. Wait for it to stabilize, then program the meter to read 7. This sets it up for next use.
  • Next, perform the same procedure, except with a pH 2 buffer solution. Add the electrode to the solution, allow it to stabilize, then adjust the electrode to pH 2. Remove it from the solution, rinse and then clean it with a tissue.

At this point, you are ready to use your pH meter! Be sure to follow the additional instructions for calibration before using the probes.

  • If you’re ready to get started, start by turning the meter on and giving it a few minutes to adjust. Make sure it’s in pH mode and has had time to stabilize.
  • Place the electrode probe in the sample you want to test. Let it sit for a few minutes to get a good read. Let it stabilize before recording the reading.
  • Once it’s stabilized, you can take that reading on the screen. Be sure to rinse the pH meter and put it back in its storage solution.


What to look for when buying a pH meter

Today it is easier to search for various devices produced to measure pH levels. However, when you try to search, you will find that a pH meter is more outstanding than other options available.

When investing in a pH meter, keep in mind that there are several important factors that you need to consider and these include portability, accuracy, temperature, electrodes, and device calibration.

Therefore, before making your final purchase decision, be sure to keep the following considerations in mind:

  • Bench or laptop? For this, your budget must be very careful. Also, think about where you will use it. Does it have to be waterproof? Will you use it in the field?
  • What accuracy is required for your particular application? Do you especially need a cheaper pocket meter? Do you need an expensive benchtop meter? It is also imperative to think about the reliability and consistency of the meter.
  • Temperature. It is practical to have the samples at room temperature before the actual test. And from there, be sure to choose a specially designed meter with automatic temperature compensation.
  • And the electrode? Note that it is important to ensure that the electrode is constructed of superior quality and designed to be appropriate for whatever application you are using it for. You can check out the latest flat cell technology probe available these days.
  • Calibration. It is highly recommended that you make sure you have the latest set of buffers. Choose a meter that has a simple one-step calibration.


How often to calibrate the best pH meter?

Calibrating your pH meter is what makes it work best. So how often should you calibrate it to get good results? It depends on a few things.

To begin with, high-precision pH meters need to be recalibrated before each use. General meters can be calibrated approximately every week.

There are some cases where it is necessary to calibrate pH meters, whether they are very accurate or not. An example would be when you have not used the electrode for a long time or when it is new.

You should also calibrate it after measuring a strong base or strongly acid solution. If there was a large difference between the buffer temperature and the item you tested, you should also calibrate again.



1. Are cheap pH meters accurate?

  • As I understand it, most of the cheap ones are quite accurate for our purposes. They just need to be properly calibrated and maintained. Realistically, even a pH difference of 0.1 will not make a noticeable difference in your beer.


2. What can I use to calibrate my pH meter?

  • To calibrate a pH meter you need two types of buffers: pH7 and pH4. These buffers help you to show the correct pH values because if you are using a pH meter you need to make sure that the pH meter is displaying the correct reading.


3. How do I test the pH in my garden?

  • Fortunately, you can test the pH of your garden soil without a soil test kit for a fraction of the price. Collect 1 cup of soil from different areas of your yard and place 2 tablespoons in separate containers. Add 1/2 cup of white vinegar to the soil. When it starts to bubble, you have alkaline soil, with a pH between 7 and 8.


4. Why are pH meters better than indicators?

  • PH meters are often much more accurate and accurate than test strips. When a test strip is used, it changes color and is compared to a color chart. One problem with this is that different people perceive colors differently and tend to interpret color comparison in different ways.



Once you are familiar with how best pH meters work, you will begin to appreciate their usefulness. Its benefits span many fields, from food and drink to chemistry and biology.

The process of calibrating and using a pH meter seems difficult, but once you understand it, it’s very simple.

You can use these pH meters in your aquariums to make sure your fish live in the right water for them. Too basic or acidic is not good, so you are helping to keep your fish healthy when you keep pH levels in check.

With your love and care, your fish can spend the rest of their lives in a balanced and safe environment.