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A Smart Device to Help Me Not Hate My Pool – The pHin

Never had a pool, and never needed a smart device like the pHin more

Growing up, having a pool was one of those dreams that never really materialized. My sister and I had plenty of friends with pools, so our summers were still filled with splashing, diving, and water fun. Just not in our backyard. My wife, on the other hand, had a pool her entire life. So, when we were shopping for our latest house seven years ago, having a pool was a priority. Now, as an adult, I had a pool. Yay me. Except, there is a difference in a pool as a kid and one as an adult. The adult has to take care of the pool.

I hated that first year with my pool. Keeping the water clear and clean was a chemistry experiment. And I failed high school chemistry. Too much chlorine, not enough PH, you didn’t shock the pool at the right time of day. Even with a few helpful friends who provided their advice on what to do it was a battle. The first year I closed the pool and vowed never to open it again. I, of course, did. Each year was a lesson in what to do, and what not to do, for my particular body of water. To the point where I roughly knew what to do to keep the pool relatively clear. This year, however, has been different. So very different.

Enter the technology and IoT into my pool. The pHin is a smart home, IoT, connected device that constantly monitors and checks your pool. It then alerts you when you need to take action such as shocking, adding chlorine, or other chemicals. The pHin app reminds you to test periodically with their test strips to provide those readings back to pHin, so its algorithm can get to know your pool even better to keep giving you accurate chemical instructions.

The device itself looks like a white shark fin, or sorts. This pHin has a system that provides buoyancy so the sensor is always under the water, and a portion of the device is above the water line. It’s meant to stay in the water all the time, so it can continuously measure the water (about 1,000 times per week).

Connecting to pHin is simple and straightforward. The app is intuitive and easy to use. The alerts though are really where this device will pay for itself over the course of a pool season. (note: I live in the Midwest and we have seasons for our pools. It snows here.)

pHin Dashboard
pHin Dashboard

With push notifications turned on, pHin provides constant feedback to the app. There are three colors to look for: blue, orange, and red. Blue obviously means everything is groovy, go ahead and jump in. The orange color indicates your pool needs some attention, which can take the form of adding more chlorine, adjusting the pH, or other actions. Red means you would be best suited to not get in the water right now and figure out what is happening. pHin helps with that part, too. You can scan which chemicals you use, and pHin will tell you how much of each to add to get the water back to the blue level. In addition to chemical levels, pHin also gives you the temperature of the water.

Overall, the pHin is a great piece of technology. It provides a simple and easy way for me to take care of my pool. The pHin has taken one of my least favorite jobs around the house and simplified it. Well worth the investment in time saved and aggravation avoided.

5 out of 5 stars

 | Website

Tim Albright is the founder of AVNation and is the driving force behind the AVNation network. He carries the InfoComm CTS, a B.S. from Greenville College and is pursuing an M.S. in Mass Communications from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville. When not steering the AVNation ship, Tim has spent his career designing systems for churches both large and small, Fortune 500 companies, and education facilities.


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