Remineralsing RO Water

Discussion in 'Water Chemistry' started by Booots, 13 Feb 2019.

  1. Booots

    Booots Newly Registered

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Hampshire
    Hi,

    I am so confused!

    My water goes through a softener and there are no options to draw water before that. As a result, I have to make my own RO/DI water.
    I understand the need to remineralise the water (or I think I understand), but I am confused by all the options available!

    I’ve been recommended 3 products:
    1) Seachem Equilibrium
    2) Dennerle Osmoze Remineralise+
    3) Salty Shrimp Gh/Kh+

    I have no idea which is best, or if there is even a real difference between each product...

    I’ve read a few good things about the Salty Shrimp product, but then again I see some aiming for 3dGh, other for 6dGh... and whatever happens to the dKh...

    What do you go for and/recommend? I’m aiming for a well planted, high tech, CRS tank...

    Thanks


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  2. tam

    tam Member

    Messages:
    891
    Do you not have a drinking water tap that doesn't go through the softener? I know the other tap in our house that doesn't is the cold water in the kitchen.

    What you re-mineralise to depends on what parameters the things you want to keep in it like. There are Crystal shrimp specific options you could use that might be easiest.
     
  3. Booots

    Booots Newly Registered

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Hampshire
    Hello Tam,
    Thanks for the reply.

    Sadly not, the softener is placed where the water comes into the building, there are no taps before, and no bypass has been designed... (well, there is a bypass, but the way it is designed means that the entire water supply would then avoid the softener, and it is essential that the water is softened as it is used for various applications requiring it in the building other than residential)...

    I want to keep RCS, nothing really fancy, but even then I can’t seem to find 2 shops and/or forum posts that will agree on the best Gh/Kh...

    Thanks again for your help.


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  4. sparkyweasel

    sparkyweasel Member

    Messages:
    673
    Possibly because RCS, Red Cherry Shrimp, are not too sensitive and can thrive in a range of hardness.
    However, your first post said CRS, Crystal Red Shrimp, which are a lot more fussy.
    If it's Cherries you want anywhere between about 5 and 15GH will be OK, whatever suits your chosen plants and fish.
    hth
     
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  5. Booots

    Booots Newly Registered

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Hampshire
    Yes, definitely Red Cherry Shrimp.



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  6. sparkyweasel

    sparkyweasel Member

    Messages:
    673
    Don't worry too much then, they need some calcium for their exoskeletons, but not fussy about the exact amount.
     
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  7. ian_m

    ian_m Global Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,969
    Location:
    Eastleigh
    Be very careful with ion exchange softened water as it has absolutely no place in fish keeping, due to the presence of sodium in the softened water. This is assuming it is a proper "big boy" ion exchange softener as opposed to the "snake oil" electric softeners that do b*gger all (ok may flash an LED). Have you confirmed your water is really softened, ie test kit, as if "snake oil" softened, the water will be completely unaffected and there will be no change in hardness.

    I assume this is why you are making your own water. Just ensure you have enough water pressure before your RO unit (booster pump) or else the efficiency or the RO will be embarrassingly inefficient, eg 10:1, 10 litres waste to 1 RO.

    In UK at least, there must be, by law, a drinking water bypass to enable unsoftened water to be drawn for drinking and cooking. People with high blood pressure and sodium issues must not drink the softened water. It is generally recommended not to drink ion exchanged softened water, though I do & brush my teeth with it.

    I have a unsoftened (but filtered) cold water tap in my kitchen for drinking and cooking, actually the cold supplies in the kitchen are unsoftened straight off the mains.

    If you are having to use RO, you can easily make your own remineraliser:
    http://www.theplantedtank.co.uk/RO.htm
     
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  8. tam

    tam Member

    Messages:
    891
    I haven't actually seen Dennerle Osmoze Remineralise+ for sale in the UK - so unless you have a stockist cross that off your list.

    Seachem Equilibrium or Saltshrimp GH/KH would do the job. I would follow the instructions on the pack and remineralise to GH6/7 - cherry shrimp can very adaptable but that's a good minimum for moulting health, and whilst they are happy with higher hardness too, there is no pointing adding more remineraliser than you need. The kh will rise in proportion so no need to worry about it. A TDS pen is very handy for mixing consistently.

    If price is about the same then I'd maybe err on the side of the saltshrimp, purely because that seems fairly popular in the shrimp community but I very much doubt it will make any difference.

    I'm using Tropic Marin Remin at the moment (just out of habit) - might try the SaltyShrimp next time and see if my shrimp notice.
     
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  9. dw1305

    dw1305 Expert

    Messages:
    8,267
    Location:
    nr Bath
    Hi all,
    @ian_m is right, you shouldn't be drinking water that has gone through ion exchange water softener, where the Ca++ ions have been exchanged for Na+ ions. We have hard water, and an ion exchange unit, and it gets through a lot of salt.

    There are really significant health risks to drinking water with high sodium levels.
    Definitely the cheapest option.

    cheers Darrel
     
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  10. Oldguy

    Oldguy Member

    Messages:
    284
    Location:
    Gloucestershire, UK
    A quick search on the internet of water softening companies: they are stating that unless you live in a very hard water area, the amount of salt in softened water is well below your daily dietary limits. This may be so but it does not give much leeway to the additional intake of salt from food and other drinks. Let alone medical condition considerations. (Perhaps we should drink more beer and less water).

    I would have thought that only those who lived in a very hard water area would go in for a water softener which negates the above advice.

    The water softening companies are saying a bypass supply for drinking is optional, I thought it was mandatory. UK tap water is safe and very drinkable straight from the tap but its a funny old world.
    .
     
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  11. akwarium

    akwarium Member

    Messages:
    152
    Location:
    Haskerhorne, Netherlands
    for every point your hardness drops, 8.2 ppm sodium is added.
     
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  12. Oldguy

    Oldguy Member

    Messages:
    284
    Location:
    Gloucestershire, UK
    Most interesting, what units are you using for hardness, I can only think in ppm.
     
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  13. soggybongo

    soggybongo Member

    Messages:
    238
    Location:
    Bradford

    bought all my salts as per James planted tank site and use his formula for my CRS, the salts cost me £20 on flea bay and that should last at least a couple of years if not more doing 50ltr per week remineralizing.
     
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  14. akwarium

    akwarium Member

    Messages:
    152
    Location:
    Haskerhorne, Netherlands
    Hardness in ° dH (= 10 ppm calciumoxide = 17.848 ppm calciumcarbonate)

    So if your water has a hardness of 15 ° dH a water softener will add 123 ppm sodium. Maximum sodium levels for drinking water are usually somewhere around 150-200 ppm, there will be some sodium already in the water, but serious health risks is a bit overstated in most cases, I think.

    Plants don't need sodium, and more sodium in the plant means less calcium, magnesium and potassium, which plants do need. So if you can't avoid using water from a softener add a bit extra of those.
     
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