Calibration Guidelines pH Meter Introduction: You can calibrate the pH meter for three pH levels, but pH7 is most

important. If you have limited time and/or resources, it’s OK if you just test for pH7 only. If you are testing all three solutions, test pH7 first, and then pH4 and pH10 in any order following. It is best to calibrate the pH meter(s) up to 24-48 hours before the water monitoring event, or less. Record your calibration on the provided sheet for pH7 only, not pH4 or pH10. Check for a “BAT” symbol flashing on the pH meter, which indicates low batteries. Be sure to record low batteries on the calibration sheet, and notify a San Diego Coastkeeper water monitoring staff member. Be aware that the meters will automatically turn off after 3-5 min. as a battery saving precaution, so don’t leave the meter sitting for more than 5 min. or it will turn off. Materials: pH meters you wish to calibrate Calibration solutions pH4, pH7 & pH10 Three 80mL beakers – fill with enough calibration solution to submerge the instrument’s electrodes De-ionized “DI” H2O for rinsing electrodes Step-by-Step Instructions: 1) Pour the pH7 calibration solution into an 80mL beaker. You want to be able to submerge the entire electrode, so be sure to pour enough to make this possible, but not so much that there is a lot of excess so we don’t waste calibration solution. 2) Rinse the electrode with DI H2O and gently shake off excess H2O. 3) Insert the pH meter into the pH7 calibration solution, deep enough so the entire electrode is submerged. 4) Swirl the electrode for a few seconds, and then leave still in the solution for up to 2 minutes. 5) Wait until the pH value stops fluxuating and settles on one value; record that value on the calibration sheet under “current reading.” 6) Now, you are ready to calibrate. Press and release the “CAL” button. On the pHTestr3 instruments, the value will start to blink, however on the pHTestr30 instruments the value does not blink. Once settled, press the “HOLD” button. 7) The value will settle at the calibrated value, which should take no longer than 30 seconds. [The pH meter will automatically settle at the pH value closest to the pre-calibration value. Ex: If the pre-calibration value was 7.25, the pH meter should calibrate to 7.00, or something very close to that. – is this correct? Or is it ] The value should then read “7.00.” 8) Record the value after calibration on the provided sheet under “reading after calibration,” even if it’s not exactly 7.00. You only have to record the pre and post calibration values for the pH7 calibration, not the subsequent pH4 and pH10

San Diego Coastkeeper Calibration Guidelines, courtesy of SDSU

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To do this. If the readings are going consistently up or down from readings 1 to 7. courtesy of SDSU 2 . as it probably needs to be replaced. rinse the electrode with DI H2O. Wash all beakers and dry on the drying rack. the pH meter needs to be recalibrated. record in the notes. you need to complete a control chart.4). that is optimal. Make sure all calibrated pH meters are turned off and put in the correct monitoring box(es). 11) Rinse with DI H2O if continuing the calibration process with the pH4 and pH10 calibration solutions and follow the same procedure you did for calibrating pH7. reading number on the X axis). only pH7. or if it needs to be replaced. you will record the pH level of the same solution (use the pH7 calibration solution to complete these tests because it’s a known value) seven times. but do not touch the electrode with the cloth. Return the pH calibration solutions and DI H2O squeeze bottle(s) to the appropriate cabinet for storage. Conductivity Meter San Diego Coastkeeper Calibration Guidelines. return to the appropriate cabinet once dry for storage.calibrations. they are not hazardous. To do this. plot your results on the provided charts (pH values on the Y axis. Be sure to rinse the electrode with DI H2O in between each reading.0 or greater (ex: reading 1 = 7.” Make sure you’ve filled out all the fields on the calibration sheet and return to the clipboard on the wall to the right of the sink. You do not need to complete a control chart for pH4 or pH10. 13) Once calibration is complete.5. It should read the exact same calibrated value. recalibrate. or stored all together and clearly dated and labeled “calibrated. 9) It’s a good idea to check the calibrated reading again. If necessary. If the readings are going up and down slightly each time (a horizontal zigzag). Once this procedure is complete. This will help us see if the pH meter is taking accurate readings. gently shake the excess H2O off and cap to store. 10) If the up/down fluxuation is 1.00. reading 2 = 6. 12) Now that the pH meter is calibrated. even if the calibrated value wasn’t exactly 7. If the problem persists. Storing the electrode wet helps to keep the circuit closed and prolong the pH meter’s life and accuracy. store the electrode damp. don’t use the pH meter and notify a San Diego Coastkeeper water monitoring staff member. Clean-up: You can safely pour all pH calibration solutions down the sink drain. you can wipe the pH meter with a cloth. If the problem persists you should not use the pH meter.

but we only calibrate 1 standard (1. 3) Swirl the electrode for a few seconds.413” a few times. 7) Now that the conductivity meter is calibrated. It will immediately start blinking “1. Be sure to rinse the electrode with DI H2O in between each reading. you need to complete a control chart. store the electrode damp. Once this procedure is complete. you should not use the conductivity meter. the conductivity meter needs to be re-calibrated. You should change the calibration solution after every 5 instruments calibrated. you will record the conductivity level of the same solution (use the same calibration solution you calibrated the conductivity meter with) seven times. reading number on the X axis). It is best to calibrate the conductivity meters on the same day as the water monitoring event. as it probably needs to be replaced. 8) A 5% swing on either side of 1. However. 2) Turn on the instrument and insert the Conductivity meter into the calibration solution. you can gently towel off the excess water if needed – just don’t towel off the electrodes. You can test in the same solution because you are testing the same instrument. record that value on the calibration sheet under “reading before calibration. If the readings are going consistently up or down from readings 1 to 7. This will help us see if the conductivity meter is taking accurate readings. or at least within 24 hours. as the conductivity meters are highly variable.413”. courtesy of SDSU 3 . plot your results on the provided charts (conductivity values on the Y axis.Introduction: You can calibrate the conductivity meters for up to 3 standards. If the problem persists.413 is generally bad and should be recorded in the notes section of the calibration sheet. you do not need to rinse the electrode with DI H2O.413) One 80mL beaker – fill with enough calibration solution to submerge the instrument’s electrodes De-ionized “DI” H2O for rinsing electrodes Step-by-Step Instructions: 1) Rinse electrode with DI H2O and gently shake off excess H2O. or if it needs to be replaced. deep enough so the entire electrode is submerged. simply take out of the calibration San Diego Coastkeeper Calibration Guidelines. Materials: Conductivity meters you wish to calibrate Traceable Conductivity Calibration Standard Solution (1.” it should be exactly “1. To do this. that is optimal. If the readings are going up and down slightly each time (a horizontal zigzag). and then will settle on the actual calibrated value. Still make a note of it on the calibration sheet.413). 9) Once calibration is complete. 6) Record the value after calibration on the provided sheet under “reading after calibration. To do this.” 5) Hold down the “CAL” button for a few seconds and release. 4) Wait until the conductivity value stops fluxuating and settles on one value. and then leave still in the solution for up to 2 minutes. you will likely see a swing greater than that on the control chart (around 10-15%).

Storing the electrode wet helps to keep the circuit closed and prolong the conductivity meter’s life and accuracy.” Make sure you’ve filled out all the fields on the calibration sheet and return to the clipboard on the wall to the right of the sink.solutions and gently shake the excess solution off and cap to store. Dissolved Oxygen Meter San Diego Coastkeeper Calibration Guidelines. it is not hazardous. you can wipe the conductivity meter with a cloth. Make sure all calibrated conductivity meters are put in the correct monitoring box(es). but do not touch the electrode with the cloth. Return the Traceable Conductivity Calibration Standard Solution and DI H2O squeeze bottle(s) to the appropriate cabinet for storage. courtesy of SDSU 4 . Clean-up: You can safely pour the Traceable Conductivity Calibration Standard Solution down the sink drain. or stored all together and clearly dated and labeled “calibrated. If necessary. return to the appropriate cabinet once dry for storage. Wash all beakers and dry on the drying rack.

easing off from the bottom of the cap. 7) Unplug probe before storing.” Make sure you’ve completed the calibration checklist and return to the clipboard on the wall to the right of the sink. courtesy of SDSU 5 . Be very careful to remove the cap gently. The DO in natural/healthy spring water is usually around 8 or 9 (the value is variable depending on several conditions such as aeration. or the oxygen in the air. 2) Without attaching the probe.Introduction: This meter reads dissolved oxygen (“DO”) in solution. You can also check the probe tip each time you calibrate or use it to look for cracks.” not “mg/L. or stored all together and clearly dated and labeled “calibrated. 6) Once the calibration is complete. San Diego Coastkeeper Calibration Guidelines. It is best to calibrate in an open. turn off the DO meter. 5) You do not need to complete a control chart.). Materials: DO meters you wish to calibrate New membranes (only if you need to change the membranes – should only be performed by a San Diego Coastkeeper water monitoring staff member) Step-by-Step Instructions: 1) Make sure the DO meter is reading “O2. Never pull from the top or twist. which are the motions that tend to break the membrane and/or crack the probe tip. Be sure to change the reading units to “mg/L” to set the DO meter to test water during the upcoming water monitoring event.9 moles per liter). or the probe tip is cracked/broken. Be sure to mark this on the calibration sheet and notify a San Diego Coastkeeper water monitoring staff member. It should read “0. 4) Once the value is stable. bacteria levels. we calibrate using the air because it’s a known value. It’s important to look for indicators that the membrane may need to be replaced. and the oxygen in air (20. Therefore. Clean-up: Make sure all calibrated DO meters are put in the correct monitoring box(es). Leave probe open to the air in the room for a few minutes (can prop up on something to keep the DO meter stable) until the value settles on one value. Return the membranes to the appropriate cabinet if necessary. You do need to check off and date the calibration event on the checklist provided to record that the calibration was completed. etc. Those indicators are 1) if the value doesn’t settle on one particular value when trying to calibrate and 2) if the value is reading “0” when trying to calibrate or test. press the “Ox Cal” button and release to calibrate.” This will allow you to calibrate using air.” 3) Plug in the probe and take off the cap. well aerated/circulated room 24-48 hours before the water monitoring event. or fill out the calibration sheet. turn the meter on. or less.

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