Low Tap TDS - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 02:52 AM Thread Starter
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Low Tap TDS

Ok so I received my digital TDS meter from amazon today. I measured my 10 gallon tank that I'm getting ready to put some Neos in, and it read 133. I was surprised how low this was so I went and read my other tanks and the tap water. Both of my other tanks read 55 and the tap water came out to 26. Is my meter busted or is it possible I just have really low TDS in my tap? Is this a good thing or a bad thing?

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post #2 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 03:03 AM
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Do you have any RODI water to test if it reads 0?
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post #3 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 03:13 AM
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Make sure there's no water current or bubbles near the probes when measuring the TDS. It's not necessarily a bad thing because if you have soft water like that, you can almost treat it like RO. Though before you make any decisions or fool around with your water, make sure your TDS meter is calibrated with a calibration solution.

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post #4 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 03:14 AM
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Re: Low Tap TDS

My tap is 20-36 tds. You probably have low tds

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post #5 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 03:17 AM Thread Starter
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The water was still and there were no bubbles on the probes. And no I don't have any RO water on hand. I can get some and test it though. I guess that would be my negative control then?

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post #6 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 03:19 AM
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If you can't get RO water, try distilled. Though TDS calibration fluid works as well.

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post #7 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 03:21 AM Thread Starter
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Is all calibration fluid universal or does it differ from one manufacturer to another in what concentration of NaCl they use?

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post #8 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 03:25 AM
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It differs on the concentration of NaCl. Use TDS 342 solution. Also, I retract my statement before. You shouldn't use distilled water to calibrate your TDS meter.

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post #9 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 03:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clemsons2k View Post
Is this a good thing or a bad thing?
It's bad if you have shrimp and aren't remineralizing. Such a low TDS means your water is soft and too soft for shrimp I'd imagine. But like others said, it's good in the way that it's almost RO water.

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post #10 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 03:41 AM Thread Starter
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Well the tank that the shrimp will be going into reads 133 TDS so obviously something is remineralizing my water in the tank. That low of TDS is good for crystals and bees, but most neos I see are raised in 200-300 TDS.

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post #11 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 03:44 AM
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Do you measure your GH and KH? TDS is comprised of everything in your water: organic waste, nitrates, minerals, and whatever else is dissolved in the water column.

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post #12 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 03:54 AM Thread Starter
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I'll have to check on them again tomorrow. Probably won't have time until the evening after work.

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post #13 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 03:54 AM
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Yup. You can poop in a bucket of RO water and you'll get TDS. I'd definitely check the GH/KH to see where you are at. Too low and you'll have issues for sure with shrimp.

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post #14 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 04:13 AM
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My tap tds ranges from 10-25, it's probable that your tap is very soft.

I have to remineralize, I have no choice!

By the way, my pond, which I do not remineralize or fill (nature does the topoffs) has a tds of 800, lol. It's all crap from leaves decomposing mostly, and then shrimp and mosquitos crapping.
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post #15 of 42 (permalink) Old 05-09-2013, 04:45 AM
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I also have very soft water with a tds from the tap around 40. And my gh/kh is 2-3. I guess I get to join the "have to remineralize" club too.
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