Under sink water filter - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-16-2012, 07:14 AM Thread Starter
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Under sink water filter

Background: I live in San Diego. We have notoriously hard water here that within 4 days, leaves a salt ring on my aquariums. I have done RO water and had too many issues with balancing mineral content so I went back to tap and fish and plants are healthier.

Has anyone used a under sink water filter? I'm not looking for anything crazy but something that is easy to attach as we rent. Just looking for recommendations.

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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-16-2012, 01:39 PM
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I would first do a look at the water quality report to find what the water really has that you want to filter out. How did you determine that it is salt? I would think that would be very unlikely but I've never tried your water, either.
The problem with a filter is that the water will have already been run through a bunch of filtering at the treatment plant and a home whole house filter may not get any more out. If there is a real problem, an RO filter for the house may be needed.
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-16-2012, 07:02 PM
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You may need to get an RO/DI unit, but I think those can be pretty expensive.

I'm not sure about San Diego, but I believe pretty much all of the LA area get's it's water from the aquaduct, and salinity is an issue due to evaporation (hundreds of miles of uncovered water, through deserts and everything). It's also a problem in the great valley, there are salt horizons forming in the soil because of the high mineral content of the water.

Water is kinda a messed up issue in Southern California. :/

If you've had problems using RO/DI water, maybe try just cutting your tap water with RO water? it should come close to halving mineral content if you just do a 50:50 mix - that way you still get buffering and micronutrients and what not, but not the excessive amount that is already in your tap.
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-16-2012, 09:46 PM Thread Starter
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i agree with both posts. I was trying more for a simplified solution than lugging around a bucket of RO water (we have a small place, no room for a RO container). Plus the gf gets really irritated with me having the counter-top RO system out for hours on end.

As far as the water report, when I stated salt, I am referring to anything alkaline which is what is causing the white build up around the tank. Being in public health, i know So cal water is horrible, no matter if they put it through the system (hell, San Diego only uses primiary sewage treatment and then ships the water 7 miles off the coast)
Just trying to find a simplified way to get water that is cleaner and thought an under sink filter may help a bit as I use a python for water changes

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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-16-2012, 10:02 PM
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Have you tried using bottled spring water? I know it seems expensive but it's what I've used in past. I used a mix of spring and distilled water in the 2.5 gallon jugs. Also do you have one of those glacier purifying stations at your local pharmacy or grociery store? A friend of mine has been using them for over a year now with no problem what so ever and only pays .25 cents per gallon.

They may be a little more costly than you want but, there's some alternatives for you.
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-17-2012, 12:05 AM
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.25 a gallon? Wow. For me, that would be a $15 - $7 if I cut it with tap water. per week 4 times a month.. .

You could have a small RO system pay for itself within a few months depending on your usage

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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-17-2012, 03:00 AM Thread Starter
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ya.. that would be expensive also.. I am going to try a 3M filtrete undersink filter and see what its like... its only 40 bucks and easy to install.

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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-17-2012, 05:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jstehman View Post
.25 a gallon? Wow. For me, that would be a $15 - $7 if I cut it with tap water. per week 4 times a month.. .

You could have a small RO system pay for itself within a few months depending on your usage
Yeah that definitely would not be cost effective for you I never said it would.

That out of the way.

What are you trying to filter out? Salinity, Lime, Calcium etc...? Have you tested your current tap water? I don't live where you do obviously. I don't know your current bottled water prices etc.... $0.25/gal is really cheap considering its usually triple filtered in the machines. Around here the going price for a gallon of spring is $0.75/gal and the same for distilled when buying in the 2.5 gallon jugs.

Most likely it will always be consistent; which from I have gathered is key and will be doing again.

Also If your water quality is that poor then you may end up replacing filters more often than you might think.

Just trying to give advice from experience is all. Things to think about.
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-17-2012, 05:40 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah that definitely would not be cost effective for you I never said it would.

That out of the way.

What are you trying to filter out? Salinity, Lime, Calcium etc...? Have you tested your current tap water? I don't live where you do obviously. I don't know your current bottled water prices etc.... $0.25/gal is really cheap considering its usually triple filtered in the machines. Around here the going price for a gallon of spring is $0.75/gal and the same for distilled when buying in the 2.5 gallon jugs.

Most likely it will always be consistent; which from I have gathered is key and will be doing again.

Also If your water quality is that poor then you may end up replacing filters more often than you might think.

Just trying to give advice from experience is all. Things to think about.
Ya. Our water authority puts out reports every 6 months. The levels of alkaline chemicals are higher here than in most places.

The goal here is to create cleaner (ie, no cysts, less chlorine, less hard) water that doesnt have to be perfect, but would be better for my fish. I truly believe that animals are a product of their environment and while fish will adjust to their conditions, that their are still things in the water that will effect their health.

The system I am trying was only 40 bucks and the replacements are only 30. They are rated for year long use, but I figure with weekly water changes, every 4-6 months sounds about right

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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-17-2012, 06:22 AM
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You know you can find a basic RO unit for $100-150
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-17-2012, 02:59 PM
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You could try peat to balance the alkalinity.

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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-18-2012, 05:02 AM
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Originally Posted by msawdey View Post
Ya. Our water authority puts out reports every 6 months. The levels of alkaline chemicals are higher here than in most places.

The goal here is to create cleaner (ie, no cysts, less chlorine, less hard) water that doesnt have to be perfect, but would be better for my fish. I truly believe that animals are a product of their environment and while fish will adjust to their conditions, that their are still things in the water that will effect their health.

The system I am trying was only 40 bucks and the replacements are only 30. They are rated for year long use, but I figure with weekly water changes, every 4-6 months sounds about right
Well I totally agree as I used tap water when I ran my semi planted tank with guppies. I noticed a huge change when I switched to bottled water the fins didn't look degrated any more the plants enjoyed it and the color was stronger for both plants and fish.

30 bucks isn't bad at all just keep any eye on the filter media if possible. At least you get a report lol here they'll just give you a crazy expression .

If it works out really well for you send me a link or info on where to purchase.
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-18-2012, 05:02 AM
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Originally Posted by jstehman View Post
You could try peat to balance the alkalinity.

Actually, I think that's a really good idea. If you have the space and a spare filter (or even just an air pump, set up a trashcan with water and peat and let it sit for a week or so, and measure the ph/hardness every couple days. once you know how long you have to treat it before hand, you can just set it up when you need to (or set up a rotation if it takes longer then your water change frequency)
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-19-2012, 03:20 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mcfly84 View Post
Well I totally agree as I used tap water when I ran my semi planted tank with guppies. I noticed a huge change when I switched to bottled water the fins didn't look degrated any more the plants enjoyed it and the color was stronger for both plants and fish.

30 bucks isn't bad at all just keep any eye on the filter media if possible. At least you get a report lol here they'll just give you a crazy expression .

If it works out really well for you send me a link or info on where to purchase.
It was just on amazon. All you do is search for under sink filter. I just wanted something that hooks up to the sink as I use a python for water changes

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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-19-2012, 03:21 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by aznartist34 View Post
You know you can find a basic RO unit for $100-150
Guess you didn't read the first post. I have an ro unit. But I'm in an apt and its too much of a hassle

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