Lowering TDS levels without RO water. - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-29-2014, 05:44 PM Thread Starter
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Lowering TDS levels without RO water.

Howdy! Just wondering if there's a way of lowering TDS without having to use RO water. I'm keeping some rednose shrimp and Lampeyes and they're doing really well, but i'd like to lower the TDS from the (minimum) levels of 300 I'm getting at the moment. I've had up to 500+ on some readings! Not using C02.
All very new to this water readings malarkey.


yesterdays readings (with no water change that day)
N02- 40
N03 - 0
GH - 8
KH - 10
CL2 - 0
TDS - 540.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-29-2014, 05:49 PM
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It all depends on what your tap water TDS is. If your tap has lower TDS then you are good to go by just doing water changes. It is higher unlikely that your tap is several hundred TDS.

Also, I hope (and think) you mean your NO3 is 40. That would be your nitrates. NO2 is your nitrites.


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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-29-2014, 05:51 PM
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Also there are several variables which can raise TDS. Any kind of rock work that is not inert may be adding to it.


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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-29-2014, 06:07 PM Thread Starter
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Doah, schoolboy error on the N02/3 there sorry! My tap water TDS is coming out at between 250-350, it varies a fair bit. I'm adding some shrimp mineral powder once a week (very low doses), but didnt think it'd make the TDS skyrocket quite that much. Tending to do a 25-30% water change every other day as the tank's still fairly new.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-29-2014, 06:40 PM
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I have a TDS of between 475 and 500 always. I top off with RO water but it always stays the same. My cherries don't seem to mind........... I have a dirted 4 gal. tank that's a few years old and it has to be the dirt that makes it this high. What substrate do you use?

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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-29-2014, 06:44 PM Thread Starter
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Phyew, that's put me at ease now! I'm using a mix of ebi gold plant and ebi gold shrimp.
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-29-2014, 06:58 PM
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I would like to see lower numbers myself but it seems impossible with my dirted tank??
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-29-2014, 09:02 PM
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I have wondered about this too. In theory is it possible that having a lot of plants will lower TDS since they are consuming minerals from the water column? Or does this not happen as they also produce organic debris/leafs etc that in time increase TDS.
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-30-2014, 12:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dolfan View Post
I have wondered about this too. In theory is it possible that having a lot of plants will lower TDS since they are consuming minerals from the water column? Or does this not happen as they also produce organic debris/leafs etc that in time increase TDS.
Since my small tank is for shrimp only I let the plants go wild except for the front.
All my over growth seems not to matter.

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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-30-2014, 01:05 PM
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If the tank us small why not use RO, water? Shrimp tanks do not require large water changes. Even buying RO at wally world only,runs 1.50 for 5g. Might be worth checking out then you can make tds to what you want.

-Chris
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-30-2014, 02:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ctaylor3737 View Post
If the tank us small why not use RO, water? Shrimp tanks do not require large water changes. Even buying RO at wally world only,runs 1.50 for 5g. Might be worth checking out then you can make tds to what you want.

-Chris
I always use RO water for top offs and water changes. I think the MG organic soil leaches and I can never get it down. I don't do to many water changes since I don't want to shock my shrimp with drastic perimeter swings. If I used substrates other than soil then yes I could control my spec's much better.

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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-30-2014, 02:22 PM Thread Starter
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I was thinking about buying RO water from the LFS, but at the moment i'm doing 25-40% water changes at least every other day as the tank's not mature yet. Trying to give them the best possible water that I can with what i have.

Plus remineralising the water may freak the fish i have in the tank out. Would have to add a tiny bit of RO water to each change then ram it up a bit more each time I guess?
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-30-2014, 02:49 PM
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Yea you just mix it in little by,little. Probably,better to go to the grocery store to fill RO water. LFS mostly charge $1 a gallon for the same water.

-Chris
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-30-2014, 02:53 PM
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I would wait till the tank is mature and then top off with RO water if your TDS is still higher than you want it. If all your critters are doing well then leave it be...That's what I have done.. Good luck and Have Fun... Don't make it to big a deal.

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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-30-2014, 03:03 PM Thread Starter
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Well i'm in the uk so not sure if my grocery tore will stock it, but worth checking. i know my local fish store down the road has RO water to sell and are jut starting up, so I may sweet talk them and become a loyal customer for a discount.

Just added some freshwater goby and they're going to the top for air a fair bit, so keeping a close eye on the o2 levels and put the airstone on full blast for a bit.
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