Which Water to Use? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-28-2013, 10:13 PM Thread Starter
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Which Water to Use?

I have a whole house water softener, under my kitchen sink i have a typical RO drinking water filter, and i also have a 5-stage RO/DI for my saltwater setup. Can I use any of this for a planted tank or should I use hard water out of the hose???
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-28-2013, 10:52 PM
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What are your regular (non-softened/non-treated) water parameters like?

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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-28-2013, 11:32 PM Thread Starter
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No idea. I've only tested the rodi water. What parameters are you looking for?
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-29-2013, 12:40 AM
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No idea. I've only tested the rodi water. What parameters are you looking for?
The usual; pH, gH, kH.

Is there any particular reason you want to avoid using your tap water, for example?

Tap water is usually fine for keeping most livestock.

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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-29-2013, 01:42 AM Thread Starter
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I will test and report back.

I have absolutely no qualms about using any of the options I listed above. I was just stating what I have available to me and wondering which is the best to use. "Tap" water for me would be softened, unless I use the hose water outside. I'm looking for guidance as to which would be my best option for a healthy planted tank.
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-29-2013, 02:55 AM
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I will test and report back.

I have absolutely no qualms about using any of the options I listed above. I was just stating what I have available to me and wondering which is the best to use. "Tap" water for me would be softened, unless I use the hose water outside. I'm looking for guidance as to which would be my best option for a healthy planted tank.
I would use the non-treated water (hose water from outside). Or, if you can find a way to bypass the water softener, it would be more convenient (than having to go outside to hook up a hose).

Anthony

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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-29-2013, 02:59 AM Thread Starter
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I was just going through Frank's setup thread and he says, "I use pure RO/DI water as the water in Texas is very hard. I recommend it for anyone who has the means."
This is what I use for my SW tank so I always have 60 gallons of fresh RO/DI on hand, but in the past I thought I heard this wasn't good for planted tanks because the plants like whatever is in the water that is getting filtered out. I guess I heard wrong??? I am here in Houston with ADG so do as Frank does?

Man, i could teach a class on saltwater reef tanks but I feel like a complete goober with this fresh stuff. LOL!
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-29-2013, 04:35 AM
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start with r/o water and reconstitute the minerals with a gh booster. seachem equilibrium, barr gh booster, green leaf aquariums gh booster are all options. Some people reconstitute KH with baking soda(though some say its not needed), i do. I aim for a gh around 4-5 and a kh of at least 2
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-29-2013, 05:35 AM
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What about Seachem Reef Builder to add some KH to RO water, is that a good option?
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-29-2013, 04:00 PM Thread Starter
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What are your regular (non-softened/non-treated) water parameters like?
Using just a test strip on straight city tap water, looks like GH and KH are right at the end of the scale, 180ppm and 240ppm respectively, and PH is about 7-7.5
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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-30-2013, 12:57 AM Thread Starter
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Ok, here's all the results. Please let me know which source I should use or which combination.

City Water from Outdoor Tap: GH-180 | KH-240 | PH-7.5
Whole House Water Softener: GH-0 | KH-240 | PH-7.5-8.0
Whole House Water Softener + Kitchen RO System: GH-0 | KH-240 | PH-7.5-8.0
Whole House Water Softener + 5 Stage RO/DI: GH-0 | KH-0 | PH-6.5

Thanks!
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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-30-2013, 01:25 AM
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I would use your 5 stage RO/DI water and some GH booster.
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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-30-2013, 02:51 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks! Is there a preferred GH booster i should look for?
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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-30-2013, 02:55 AM
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I would use your 5 stage RO/DI water and some GH booster.
Would you only add GH Booster and stay with 0 KH?
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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-30-2013, 02:59 AM
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Why spend money on a GH booster when you can just blend some softened and untreated water?

And by the way, I have really hard water as well but I don't use RO for my planted tank even though I have RO/DI for my reef. Been a while since I've tested for exact measurements but I could check it out and let you know. I think the TDS in my tank is around 650ppm.
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