Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: St. Louis, Missouri
Whole House Water Softeners
I have been reading some conflicting information that whole house mechanical water softeners that use an internal salt bath mechanism to soften water isn't good for aquariums. Yet, I also regularly read in the forums where many fish keepers add some aquarium salt to their freshwater tanks to condition their water, and many defend that practice pretty strongly from many years of having done so.
It would seem to me that the very minute residue of salt, the most of which is pumped down the drain after use within the water softener, would be a significantly less amount of salt than would be added to a tank by those that subscribe to the idea that adding salt to their aquariums is actually quite good for water conditioning.
If adding salt is a beneficial common practice, which is definitely seems to be the case if you survey the forums, I can't see how using a water softener would be detrimental, provided you add a small token amount of essential minerals back into the tank that may have been extracted from the water during the water softening process.
The only exception to this might be whether the salt residue would negatively effect certain plants. In my case, I have a low tech tank, just recently added some Anubias, and plan to add some water lettuce or frog bit on top to soak up Nitrates in the near future.
Anybody have any experience using mechanically softened water to fill their tanks or when doing top-offs?