In a laboratory setting, pH meters are typically used to give an accurate reading of pH in water. You can buy a pH meter online, but they can be on the more expensive side.
A more affordable alternative is to purchase a single-use at home pH test kit. pH test kits come with strips that one can dip into a water sample. The strip will turn a certain color to indicate how acid or basic the water is.
One can buy different pH kits that are designed to work with specific pH ranges. When dealing with particularly acidic or basic water, make sure the pH kit is designed to work with this pH range. This is the better option than buying a testing kit that ranges from 1 to 14, as it may be more difficult to get an accurate result based on the test strip’s color hue.
pH test strips can be handy for initially assessing water, and testing it again after treating water to increase or decrease its pH.
In short, if using water for drinking, one should make sure it has a pH of between 6.5 and 8.5; preferably as close to 7 as possible. Any higher or lower than this, and the water is not safe to drink.