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A common failure of pH probes occurs from damage to the cable. Constant flexing and straining eventually breaks the strands of wire inside the cable causing a noisy or incorrect reading.
If the plastic outer layer of the cable is damaged, the readings can become unstable due to the high sensitivity of the pH electronics. Even if the wires inside are not damaged, the cable still must be replaced. On most sensors this means replacing the whole probe.
To prevent damage, handle the probe with as much care as possible. Prevent the cable from being strained or bent sharply. It is advised to periodically check the cable for cuts and tears, especially if the reading is unstable. There are many other causes of instability of course, and we will be covering all of them in our regular guides.
If the cable is damaged on a standard pH probe the only real solution is to buy a new one.
Read about 'Cracked Glass'