10 Best Soil Test Kits Compared & Reviewed

Last Updated: 12.12.19

 

Best Soil Test Kit Review – Top Rated Models with Buying Guide

 

If you’re serious about gardening and growing the most delicious veggies or the most beautiful flowers for your backyard, you will require the help of the best soil test kit on the market. After conducting an extended review, we can recommend a reliable soil test kit like the K Kernowo 3-in-1 Soil pH Meter. The product is designed to be lightweight and portable, so you can easily carry it with you and use it both indoors and outdoors. The 3-in-1 device will test soil moisture, pH value, and sunlight level for plants to help you easily identify their true needs. What we liked the most about this kit is that it doesn’t require solar energy or a battery to function, meaning it functions at any hour of the day and night. If this item is not available for purchase right away, a good alternative would be the Aonmik Soil Moisture Sunlight Ph Test Meter.

 

 

Comparison Table

 

The Good
The Bad
Verdict
Price

 

 

10 Best Soil Test Kits (Updated Reviews) in 2019

 

 

Going through countless soil pH test kit reviews will take time without promising to deliver the best results, especially if you don’t know exactly what to look for. Thus, we decided to make a list with some of the most sought-after products available on the market and share it with you. Here are the models we liked the most.

 

 

1. K Kernowo 3-in-1 Soil pH Meter

 

Gardening is a precise science that combines knowledge from different areas, including physics, chemistry, and biology, to make sure your plants have everything they need to grow strong. One of the most useful tools you will require is a soil pH test kit like this one from K Kernowo.

This 3-in-1 device measures the soil level of moisture, the pH value, and the sunlight level of plants, helping you to know the soil condition to properly look after your plants and see them growing and blooming.

It is compact and lightweight, weighing just a few ounces, meaning you can fit it in any pocket and carry with you anywhere you go. The product is designed for both indoor and outdoor use, on a wide variety of plants, including fruits and veggies. It also comes with complete step-by-step instructions on how to use the kit and look after it.

 

Pros

It is compact and portable, weighing a little under two ounces. The small dimensions make the device fit in any pocket or gardening costume.

It helps you balance the pH level in the soil and tells you if your plants need more light, providing important information on how to properly look after all your plants.

It can be easily used in just a few simple steps and doesn’t require any additional monitoring or power equipment such as batteries or solar energy.

Since there isn’t any source of energy involved, you can read the results instantly. However, we do suggest waiting at least one minute before completing your reading.

 

Cons

Don’t forget that the kit is designed for testing soil only, so you shouldn’t use it on any type of liquid if you want accurate and relevant results.

Don’t use alcohol or any other chemical substances to clean the probe after each use. Instead, wipe it clean with the help of a soft piece of cloth.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($10.99)

 

 

 

2. Aonmik Soil Moisture Sunlight Ph Test Meter

 

This product has the integrated functions of a soil moisture meter, a pH meter, and sunlight meter, making a great addition to your gardening tools and accessories. With the help of this garden soil test kit, you can rest assured that your plants will receive the necessary nutrients and amount of water for healthy growth.

As with many other similar products, you should use this one only to test the soil pH and not the pH value of any other liquid. Accurate and reliable, the item reads results in only 60 seconds, allowing you to take the necessary measures right away.

It is made of durable materials and can be easily used without requiring additional solar energy or battery power. It also comes with step-by-step instructions specifically designed for beginner gardeners who don’t know how to use technology in their favor. The kit can be used on all types of soils, both indoors and outdoors.

 

Pros

It is made of strong and durable materials that won’t corrode or break easily, even when exposed to extreme weather conditions and temperatures.

It comes with a complete set of instructions and step-by-step guidance on how to calibrate, use, read, and interpret the results of your soil tests.

The results are delivered immediately but for more accuracy, we suggest waiting anywhere from 60 seconds to 10 minutes.

It uses the latest available technologies that don’t require a source of power, meaning you won’t have to replace batteries or wait for solar energy to recharge the device.

 

Cons

As with many other similar meters, it will take some time until you fully understand how to measure soil nutrients and interpret the results. If you’re a garden newbie, we suggest trying first with lab soil tests done by specialists who can also interpret the test results and give recommendations on the quantity of fertilizers and water you need to use for your plants.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($9.99)

 

 

 

3. Atree Soil pH Meter Tester Kit Indoor & Outdoor

 

Specifically designed for indoor and outdoor use, this device is small and portable. It is made of durable materials that won’t break or corrode, even when exposed to the cold temperatures outside, on a winter day. It is compact and can be easily carried with you anywhere you go, fitting in your jacket’s pocket.

It is easy to use and comes with clear, step-by-step instructions on how to run the tests and interpret the results, according to your plants’ needs. The kit is designed to give accurate results on the soil light, moisture, and pH to help you grow a wide variety of plants, including flowers, fruits, and vegetables.

As with many other similar testers, we don’t recommend using this soil kit to test the pH of any liquids. All you have to do is insert the probes into the soil 4 inches or deeper and wait for the reading. You can take the probes out after 60 seconds and interpret the results. When you’re done, make sure to wipe clean the probes to remove excess dirt and debris.

 

Pros

The meter is made of durable materials and won’t corrode or break easily, becoming a trustworthy instrument for your gardening and agricultural activities season after season.

The product comes with step-by-step instructions on how to use it and read the results to find the perfect combination of moisture, soil pH, and nutrients necessary for your plants.

You can use it on almost any type of soil, both indoors and outdoors.

It doesn’t require any type of solar energy or battery, meaning you can use the test meter at any moment of the day, without worrying it may run out of power.

 

Cons

Although the results you will get from this test meter are accurate, you will still need someone to interpret them if you’re a newbie in the gardening and agricultural businesses.

This product will only give you numbers which you later have to decypher to know if the soil needs more nutrients, according to the plants you are growing.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($14.98)

 

 

 

4. Sonkir Soil pH Meter MS02 Plant Care

 

Gardening and finding the specific needs of your plants has never been easier with the help of this affordable soil test kit.

The 3-in-1 functions will test soil moisture, sunlight level, and pH value to help you specialize in grasping when and how much you need to water your plants, control the pH value in the soil or change lighting conditions. If you constantly monitor these parameters, you will notice your crops will be taller and stronger.

The product is based on the premium double-needle detection technology that enhances the speed and accuracy of detecting and analyzing soil pH acidity and moisture levels, promoting plant growth in a healthy, non-invasive way. Thus, one of the greatest benefits of this meter is that you won’t add too much fertilizer or water to feed your plants when they don’t need it.

It is designed to be lightweight and portable, perfect for both indoor and outdoor use.

 

Pros

It uses a premium double-needle detection technology to increase the speed and accuracy of analyzing and detecting soil pH acidity and moisture, promoting the plant’s healthy growth.

The product is designed to be portable and lightweight so you can carry it with you anywhere you go. Its small dimensions also make it easy to store whenever you’re not using it.

It is ideal for home plants, farms, lawns, and gardens, and can be easily used even by inexperienced gardeners or farmers.

The soil moisture reads instantly but you should have to wait a couple of minutes for an accurate reading.

 

Cons

The item is not made to test the pH level of pure water or other liquids, so we suggest you only use it for soil.

You shouldn’t leave the meter in the soil for too long either and make sure to wipe and clean the probe after each use if you still want accurate results.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($9.99)

 

 

 

5. Sleebas Soil Tester Moisture Light Meter Kit

 

Why spend more money on water and fertilizers, guessing the perfect ratio for your plants to grow when you can reduce costs and enhance results with the help of this soil lead test kit? Designed to be handy and easy to carry around, the product is perfect for gardens, lawns, and outdoor farms.

It can also be used for testing soil on indoor plants like the ones in greenhouses or window boxes. Convenient and extremely efficient, the device won’t require the use of electricity or batteries to work. The electrode of the probe is the one that makes the meter function. All you have to do is plug it and read the results.

We don’t recommend inserting the probes into hard rock or stony soil, as well as soil that is too hard as it will affect the accuracy of the reading. You shouldn’t use the device for testing the pH of water or other liquids either.

 

Pros

Compact, lightweight, and easy to use, the product can be easily carried with you anywhere you go and will become your favorite gardening accessory.

It doesn’t need any batteries or an additional source of power to work, meaning you can use it anytime you want, without worrying about having to charge it.

It provides accurate reading almost instantly but you should wait at least 60 seconds to make sure the results are right before taking the probes out of the soil.

The double sensor design will measure soil moisture and pH value efficiently, helping you to adjust the amount of water and fertilizers used for your plants to grow strong and healthy.

 

Cons

Probes are made of rigid materials so they cannot bend. And, since they are quite long, they might not fit into small window boxes or pots mainly designed to grow indoor plants. Thus, we recommend using this test kit for gardens, lawns, and other outdoor soils.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($10.99)

 

 

 

6. Besmon Soil Test Kit Moisture Meter Indoor/Outdoor

 

If you already went through many soil test kit reviews and still haven’t found the product you were looking for, perhaps this one will be a better match for your needs. Affordable and easy to use, it comes with step-by-step instructions on how to get an accurate reading for your soil and help your plants grow bigger and stronger.

It uses a similar double-needle detection technology as other items available on the market, meaning you won’t require an additional source of power such as a battery or solar power. Thus, you can use the product anytime you want, without having to wait for it to recharge.

The 3-in-1 design analyzes soil pH, moisture, and sunlight to help you adjust the amount of water and fertilizer used on your plants. In the long term, your plants will grow stronger and your costs will drop significantly. In fact, according to research conducted by the University of Florida, using regular soil tests for your plants will reduce water consumption by 50%.

 

Pros

It is lightweight and extremely portable, meaning you can take it with you anywhere you go.

Based on a double-needle sensor design, the item is ready to test without any external power source, allowing you to use it anytime you want.

It comes with full step-by-step instructions on how to use it so you get accurate readings each time.

The item represents a great gardening accessory for most vegetables, flowers, and fruits grown outdoors but can also be successfully used for indoor plants.

 

Cons

The display isn’t very easy to use, even with good glasses and a good reading angle. Perhaps, the manufacturer should consider replacing the current display with a bigger one.

Although the color is not relevant for such an accessory, we would prefer it to be available in black as the current green shade might make it harder for you to spot in the soil, alongside all the other leafy greens and flowers.

Click to see the price on Amazon!

 

 

 

7. Whitetail Institute Laboratory Soil-Test Kit

 

This laboratory test will provide accurate testing on most types of soils so you can get the best ratios of water and fertilizer for your plants. It promises to deliver high-standard results and enhance the growth cycle of all your plants, be them veggies, fruits or flowers.

It can be used for testing soil on both indoor and outdoor plants and the kit includes everything you need inside. It is easy to use and comes with step-by-step instructions. By following them, you will be able to take the best soil samples and send them for analysis to professional laboratories.

This kit is perfect for beginner farmers and gardeners who don’t know how to interpret the results given by a home-use meter.

After analyzing the soil samples, the laboratory will send the results via mail or email within one week. The price also includes professional consultation, meaning you can ask for advice on the right amount of fertilizer to use for growing your favorite plants.

 

Pros

Why spend money on soil test meters that are hard to use when you can have all the relevant information without effort? Choose this product and you’ll receive everything you need to know about your plants in just a matter of days.

The kit is easy to use and comes with step-by-step instructions to make sure you take perfect soil samples and receive accurate results in return.

You don’t have to invest money in gear, accessories or any other agricultural devices to learn how to properly look after your plants.

The product will save you money and time on fertilizers and water as it calculates the necessary amount of these elements for all your plants.

 

Cons

Unlike home soil testing kits that take anywhere from 60 seconds to 10 minutes to deliver results, you will have to wait for yours for about seven days, then check your email for a full soil analysis.

This option is good if you don’t know how to use home soil kits or interpret the data but might cost you a lot of time and money in the long term, especially if you have different types of plants that you want to grow.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($13.84)

 

 

 

8. Yoyomax Soil Test Kit Meter Light Tester

 

Stop guessing and find out what your plants need in terms of nutrition. Use this device to read moisture, pH, and light levels of the soil so you know exactly how much water and fertilizer to use for your plants.

This soil tester provides a comprehensive idea about the soil condition of your lawn, greenhouse plants or garden. In just a few minutes, it can tell you what you need to adjust so that your plants will grow stronger and bigger.

The item is compact and lightweight, making a great gardening accessory you can take with you anywhere you go. It doesn’t require any batteries or source of power, meaning you can use it anytime you want, without any restrictions.

It comes with full, easy-to-understand instructions so you can become a more experienced gardener and understand the needs of your flowers, fruits or veggies. It can be used both indoors and outdoors.

 

Pros

Compact and lightweight, the item fits in your pocket and represents a great addition to your gardening tools.

The 3-in-1 design allows you to easily test the soil pH, moisture, and light levels, providing vital information on how to adjust the water and food ratios so that your plants will get the most and grow stronger.

Used regularly, these soil test kits can help you save big bucks on monthly utility bills by adjusting the amount of water given to your plants.

Why waste your money on a cheap soil test kit that won’t provide accurate results when you can use this one and finish your soil reading in only 60 seconds?

Go green with this product that doesn’t need batteries or any source of energy to perform accurate soil tests.

 

Cons

The moisture meter doesn’t seem to read above the mid-range “moist” value, which may not be enough if you want to adjust watering rates.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($9.99)

 

 

 

9. Environmental Concepts 1663 Professional Soil Test

 

Just like the name suggests, this soil test kit is designed to provide accurate and professional results so you know exactly the needs of your plants. It is delivered with the components for 80 tests, 20 each for soil pH and the three basic nutrients – nitrogen, potassium (potash), and phosphorus.

The product comes with simple and detailed instructions so you know exactly what to do to get accurate test results for your soil samples.

Unlike other soil tests that only deliver numbers without telling you how to interpret them and adjust the levels of water and fertilizers received by your plants, this kit includes extensive guidelines for altering the soil according to the plants’ needs. In return, you will get bigger, stronger, and tastier crops.

All chemical substances and accessories needed for testing are delivered in a sturdy box to prevent breaking, leaking, and damage. Unfortunately, the kit won’t help you determine the moisture level of your soil.

 

Pros

Delivered in a sturdy plastic case to prevent breaking and leaking, this soil test kit comes complete with 80 tests, enough to run them on different types of soils and find out exactly what your plants need to grow strong and healthy.

The kit is delivered with full, step-by-step instructions so you’ll get the best results even if you’re a newbie gardener or farmer.

The test results are accurate and the soil testing is done in a professional manner, similar to the method used by specialized labs.

All liquids and powders are safe to use and don’t pose a hazard to the environment if you closely follow the instructions.

 

Cons

Unfortunately, you can’t find replacement tests for this kit so it becomes rather useless when you run out of tests.

The product can only test soil pH and nutritional values, leaving aside moisture. You’ll require an additional moisture meter to see if your plants receive enough water to develop properly.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($29.39)

 

 

 

10. XLUX Soil Test Meter Kit Light Plant Care

 

If you read this soil test kit review, chances are you’ll consider this product as the right one for your gardening and agricultural needs. The 3-in-1 kit is complete with a pH, moisture, and light meter to identify the needs of each one of your plants and help them grow healthy and strong.

The product is easy to use and doesn’t require batteries or an additional source of power, meaning it works in all weather and temperature conditions. It provides accurate testing for soil both indoors and outdoors and represents a wonderful gardening tool for lawns, gardens, and small greenhouses.

Used regularly, the kit will help you save water and energy while keeping your plants in top condition by providing the right ratio of nutrients.

The moisture readings can be registered on a scale of 1 to 10, 1 being dry and 10 moist, while lighting reading ranges from 0 (low light) to 2000 (strong light). The test can also help you measure the soil pH, as long as it is between 3.5 (acidic) and 8 (slightly basic).

 

Pros

Completely change the way you look after your plants with the help of this 3-in-1 meter that can help you test the soil pH levels, light, and moisture.

The product is easy to use and comes with step-by-step instructions, specifically explained for inexperienced gardeners and farmers.

Used regularly, this soil testing kit will help you save water and energy while providing all the necessary nutrients for your plants to grow strong and healthy.

On the back of the package, you’ll find detailed instructions on how to read and interpret the test results and adjust water and food levels for your plants.

 

Cons

Don’t submerge the probe into a liquid as it may cause permanent damage to the sensor.

When using the probe, you need to be careful not to touch stones or hard soils as these elements can also interfere with the testing results and damage the sensor.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($9.99)

 

 

 

Our Comprehensive Buying Guide

 

 

Given that there are so many options available on the market, how can you make sure you choose the best home soil test kit for your plants? Continue reading to find out more about these products and make sure that, no matter which one you choose, you will receive professional results for all your plants.

 

 

Mail-in or at home?

Many of the products you will find on the market today allow you to test your soil in the comfort of your own home. Although these items are more convenient and easy to use, they require knowledge in the field of gardening. They do come with clear, step-by-step instructions but they will take some time to be properly calibrated.

You will also need time to learn to read and properly interpret the results so that your plants receive the best care. The good thing about home kits is that they provide almost instant results.

Mail-in products provide improved accuracy in terms of results. You will only have to send a sample of your soil and a team of professionals will run all the tests for you, providing the information you need to properly look after your plants.

The main disadvantage is that you’ll usually have to wait anywhere between a couple of days and a week until the results become available, wasting precious time.

And, since each plant requires different lighting and watering conditions, mail-in test kits are not a feasible option for those who want to grow different trees, fruits, veggies or flowers.

 

Number of tests

Many soil tests for gardens come with several individual tests, usually a complete set for each of the tested elements. You need to make sure the product you’re purchasing has enough tests for your needs or buy them in bulk.

Don’t forget that some elements will be tested more often than others, so you’re also looking at replacements. In time, all the extra supplies you’re buying will add to your costs, turning gardening into an expensive hobby.

There is also the option of electronic or mechanical devices that measure the most important parameters of soil without requiring additional supplies. They are usually lightweight and portable and provide accurate results in a matter of seconds or minutes.

 

Is soil the only thing that needs to be tested?

While soil testing is an important element to make sure your plants receive the optimum combination of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potash, there are other things you need to take into account, such as the soil pH, sunlight, and moisture amount.

All these elements combined ensure proper growth for your plants, supporting them throughout their development cycles, from seedling to bloom. Thus, if you want to test more than the soil, you’ll need to either invest in additional accessories or in one single device that can measure all these parameters together.

According to recent studies, when used correctly, moisture meters can reduce outdoor water usage by more than 50%, which further translates to cheaper bills and the optimum amount of water for all your plants.

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

Q: How do soil test kits work?

As we previously mentioned, there are various types of soil test kits, each measuring different elements and reacting to different compounds and stimuli.

If we’re referring to 3-in-1 products, there are a few simple steps you need to follow before reading the results provided by them and understanding what needs to be done next for your plants.

If your kit measures the soil pH, moisture level, and sunlight exposure, you will have to insert the probe into the soil about 2-4 inches deep and adjust its position until the pointer on the dial swings slightly.

 

 

Q: How do you use a soil testing kit?

The instructions depend on the type of soil kit you opt for. 3-in-1 products that are more convenient and affordable come with step-by-step instructions on how to use them to get the most accurate results.

The first step usually tells you to switch to the type of position you wish to test – moisture, pH or light. Then, you should insert the probe into the soil about 2-4 inches. Adjust the position of the probe so that the pointer on the dial swings slightly, and then wait anywhere between 60 seconds and 10 minutes to read the dial.

After your testing is done, remove the probe from the soil and use a clean wipe to remove excess dirt and debris.

 

Q: Do soil test kits expire?

Many soil fertility and pH tests are affordable but this doesn’t mean they will last forever. If you opt for a home kit, you will have to buy replacement chemicals or reagents as they expire.

If you’re opting for 3-in-1 devices that give you the results on the spot, you won’t have to worry about their expiration date. Most of these devices use other systems to test moisture and pH and don’t require you to replace substances. However, these items might not be the best solution if you’re a beginner as they are a bit more complicated to set up, read, and interpret.

 

Q: What are the different types of soil tests?

The analysis of soil is conducted for a large variety of reasons. However, the most widely conducted soil testing is designed to estimate the available concentrations of plant nutrients to determine the necessary amount of fertilizers and water used for agricultural purposes. Other soil tests can be conducted for engineering, ecological or geochemical investigations.

Most do-it-yourself kits test for three major nutrients (nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium) and soil pH. These tests can be usually purchased from farming cooperatives, gardening stores, and university labs.

Electrical meters can measure soil acidity, water content, and nutrient content. You can also opt for laboratory tests conducted by specialists that deliver more accurate results but take up to 10 days to complete.

 

Q: Why is it important to test your soil?

Each plant is different regarding its soil pH and nutrient needs. Soils also vary considerably in their ability to meet the plant’s nutritional needs, depending on various factors such as soil parent material, texture, structure, biological activities, climate, current growing conditions, and others.

By testing your soil, you will be able to adjust the number of nutrients your plants receive for healthy growth. Other benefits of testing the soil include minimizing the fertilizer amount used which further translates into cost savings and a greener planet, as well as reducing soil water by around 50%, according to a study recently conducted by the experts from the University of Florida.

 

 

 

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