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My ph computer is off to about 0.2 degrees pH.I have checked it with another calibrated meter.Will calibration fix it?Also the electrode is about 2-3 years old.Should I consider replacing it?I have heard that their life is sometimes less than a couple of years,is that true?Also is their any maintenance needed for probes that remain in the tank for months?I have seen debris accumulating on the tip of the probe..Thanks a lot
 

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You always want to clean the probe to remove any bio-film, algae, or other tank inhabitants (used to have snails that would camp out on it). This could help with your readings. Also, most probes are to be replaced every 6-9 months depending on the type. They lose the capability to read accurately over time. I have kept probes for over a year that still calibrate just fine. The true test is to see how easy they calibrate. The more you have to mess with the settings when changing from the 4 to 7 pH (or 7-10) solution, the less accurate your probe is. A new probe almost takes no calibration.

What kind of electrode do you have? I can tell you my Pinpoint is much better than the Milwaukee that I have. The Pinpoint is right on after almost a year of use...the Milwaukee, not so much.

Hope that helped, and check out the links to everything you ever wanted to know about pH probes.

http://www.66pacific.com/ph/ph_probe.aspx
and
http://www.omega.com/techref/ph-3.html

Hope it helps...
 

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6-9 months could be true for the lab probe used to take 200 measures a day in full pH range with frequent rinsing in distilled water. When used in aquariums, pH probes live much longer than that. I have a couple of probes which are more than 5 years old, one of them picked up dry at estate sale. They both are way off zero at pH7 but the error is linear and the meter still calibrates fine.
 
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