Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
My understanding is that ph correlates to kH. If you have a very low kH your ph will also be low. High kH = high pH. The gH will not affect the ph, so you can have soft water with high ph, aka, low gH, high pH.
For example, my local water has a moderate kH, keeping the ph around 7.7-7.8 but the gH is ridiculously high. We call it liquid rock, but the kH isn't so high that the pH is too high to work with.
I believe TDS measures everything in the water, so raising kH also raises TDS, however, if you have a "clean" product it will not add more than what is required.
If using straight RO, the safest way, IMO, to increase the kH a bit if needed, is to add a small amount of coral to the filter. I try to avoid it because the more acidic the water to start, the faster the coral will dissolve. I just personally like to avoid additives, period.
If you have a kH reading after going through the RO it isn't likely working properly. The TDS should be nearly nil if the membrane is working properly.
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