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Personally I think you might be starting out on the wrong foot if you use distilled. Honestly better to get the 4 stage RO Buddie from Amazon for $60.
This isn’t really the hobby to cut corners on, but you do you.
This is a really great starter RO water system AQUATICLIFE Aquatic Life RO Buddie Plus DI Four Stage Reverse Osmosis Deionization Unit 50 GPD [link]
Best one for the money I could find. You can hook it up to a hose bib or standard faucet with the stuff that comes with it, but beware, not all faucets can handle the back pressure and may leak. I installed a double valve under my sink and just run a line out to fill jugs in my bathtub and set the drain line in my sink. Those shut-off valves are about $20 at the hardware store.
I would revisit getting an RODI unit again, you don't have to get a whole house sized one, a little 50 gallon per day $60 unit, like say, this one will meet your needs.
Like others have said though, its more important to worry about keeping pH consistent (at least for 'easy' fish like bettas) than it is to worry about the exact number. Keep using your boyfriends water for now, that level of nitrates would be dangerous for the fish long term.
Here's what I got. I mounted it on a board next to my utility sink and have it drip into a 5gal in the sink, just in case I forget about it and it overfill. The waste water goes down the sink.
Okay. If true, that's not too bad, but typically under 5 ppm is what you want (ideally 0 TDS). A lot of people here use the RO Buddle, which is relatively cheap compared to a traditional RODI unit. And you probably wouldn't eat through filters too fast at that TDS either. Just something to consider. Also FYI, most bottled distilled water is okay to use, but you must check the TDS with a meter and check it for copper. I have a traditional RODI unit that I make my own water with, but occasionally I'll top off my ATO with distilled from WalMart if I'm running low and can't 'make' water for a few days. Since your tank is relatively small, it might be a viable option. Good luck!
Perfect for watering and to make tea, coffee or just drinking water for yourself...
I plan to use a nice ro/di 4 stage off Amazon with good reviews, not water, I’m getting a machine. Hopefully it will work well, I’m also getting a TDS tester to know when I need to change filters. I know you can buy the water from local fish stores or grocery markets, but I honestly don’t trust that. I don’t have a reason, I just don’t trust places I don’t have a connection with, especially with something like the lives of my corals and fish (in the future). So hopefully I can control that element of the chain. If you want to see the brand I’ll post the link here.
If you’re in a rental, idk if plumbing the RODI filter in would be a good idea. Easiest just to get an RO buddie off Amazon and just use a faucet adapter. Otherwise a home improvement store will have the setup, but it’s usually an extra little faucet on the kitchen sink, which wouldn’t work for a rental.
There’s conflicting evidence on drinking RODI water, I personally don’t outside of using it to make coffee. Just like fish need minerals in the water, so do we - especially if you’re active you’ll want the electrolytes in the tap. If it’s taste you don’t like in your tap - a simple Britta filter would do for drinking.
My water hardness is about 10dKH. Is it worth getting an RODI unit to help lower that to provide better conditions for plants? Amazon has ones for $60 that look good enough.
I have good lighting, co2, fertz and all that. The hardness feels like the last hurdle.
It'll be worth your while to get an RODI unit in the long run. You can get a simple 4 stage RODI on Amazon for like $60 as well, so you wouldn't be spending that much.
Edit: here's the Amazon listing for it [link]
Aquatic Life RO [link]
Is this what you’re mentioning for the RO buddy?
I’ve been thinking about getting one but I don’t trust the water in Jersey city, apparently it has very high TDS. Do i just hook this puppy up to my faucet or underneath where the water valve is?
The basic RO system from bulkreefsupply is sold out. Would this work?
AQUATICLIFE RO Buddie Four Stage Reverse Osmosis System with Color Changing Mixed Bed Deionization Cartridge
by Aquatic Life USA
Learn more: [link]
So would something like this be good enough?
I picked up one of these about two years ago and it has worked very well. It's quite slow, so I usually start collecting my water the night before a brew (but I also brew 8-10 gallon batches). I permanently mounted it underneath my kitchen sink and have a small spigot mounted in the sink.
We use an RO/DI system for our regular aquarium. You can get them from Amazon for relatively cheap.
The one linked outputs 0 TDS water, although it does take quite a bit of time to fill a 10g bucket.
Buying a $20 hose attachment for your sink from Home Depot, and buying a $100 RO filter from amazon. By far the cheapest you will get for long term. I bought this for $80 on sale: [link]
There are some pretty cheap RO or DI water systems that you can get on amazon. I got my DI system for $60 here:
It just hooks onto your faucet (you have to remove the aerator from your faucet, which is just the little mesh screen thing at the opening) it's worked great for me since I live in a tiny apartment and can't re-plumb anything.
Make sure it removes the chlorine.
A friend just ordered this one recently, for a small grow, it should work fine
Aquatic Life RO Buddie Four Stage Reverse Osmosis System with Color Changing Mixed Bed Deionization Cartridge [link]
Edit, one thing to keep in mind is water pressure. Depending on the water pressure in your house, you may need to add a booster pump, to get better results.
I also was planning on getting a small RODI system as I’m nervous about top off water but I don’t need something huge since it’s a nano tank. I was considering this: [link]
Any reason not to? Also was going to get a 2 gallon storage container for the water to keep in a dark closet until I need to top off.
It will last indefinitely in a sealed bucket, but you don't want to agitate or heat it. The only danger is that alkalinity will precipitate out over time...you might want to test before you use it and adjust back to your desired range.
Just FYI, you can get cheap RODI systems for $60 and make it yourself too.
BRS has good videos on RODI units and ROBuddie has their own video in setting it up properly.
here’s a link to amazon It looks like its $59.99 right now so it’s a good price.
I have this RO unit and it works pretty well for a smaller tank. For $60 it will pay for it self pretty quickly making salt and top off water.
If you are looking for a small RODI I purchased one off Amazon for $50 at the time. IT works great and I have not had any problems with it. It has gone up a little but still an excellent value.
The brand is Aquatic Life and the product is called "RO Buddie". It has 4/5 stars on Amazon out of 312 reviews so it's not a total blind buy but yeah...suspicious...here is the link.
I feel like there's probably some kind of caveat, like the filter needs to be replaced stupidly quickly but I only have space for a 10gal nanotank anyway (I know how totally inadvisable it is to start with a nano-anything in the aquarium hobby but as I've established in this post I fail at taking advice) so I wouldn't need much water, it might end up totally worth it.
My arms are like ramen noodles so I can't lug water anywhere.
I have been looking at CO2 injection, anything you could suggest? It completely confuses me
EDIT: Would something like this work if my rtap water has phosphates?
Go with Neocardina, they come in basically every color.
What you need to understand tho is this. If you mix different colors of neocardina, they will interbreed and eventually your tank will return to wild color neos which are clear/brown. If you want to prevent this you can mix species that cant breed, such as Neocardina + cardina.
I recommend you pick any color neocardina shrimp. If you plan on doing a multispecies tank, think about getting a cheap r/o system like this. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00204CQF6/
Learn to use saltyshrimp gh/kh salt to get parameters right. Set it for cardina shrimp. since neos can live in cardina parameters. Get neos first, After 2-3 months if your neos are thriving, then add in some cardina shrimps.
AQUATICLIFE Aquatic Life RO Buddie Plus DI Four Stage Reverse Osmosis Deionization Unit 50 GPD [link]
Regular 109 so a pretty good sale
This one is only 69 not too bad
[link] (not an affiliate link)
Best investment I've ever made. 7 months of ro water, only just recently bought a replacement cartridge for 18 bucks.
Not sure why you think an RO system is seriously expensive, you can get one for $60 bucks that'll make all the RO water you need for plants.
Gets even cheaper if you get a three stage unit that produces low ppm (~10 ppm) usually vs a four stage which gets you 0 ppm. Plants don't care. I think someone did the math on an amazon review and it works out to being 8 cents a gallon.
If you don't want an RO unit for a small collection, zero water filters are reported to work great too, since they reduce the total ppm of the water.
This is the one I’ve been using. It works well for my plumbing setup.
AQUATICLIFE Aquatic Life RO Buddie Plus DI Four Stage Reverse Osmosis Deionization Unit 50 GPD
Would this work for making my own ro water?
Any detectable ammonia is going to stress out the fish. I picked up one of these guys which will fill up a 5 gal bucket in about an hour or two. I just set it up in a shower in a guest room that I don't use very often so if it overflows the bucket it just goes down the drain. This way you're starting with clean water.
Use this! I’ve been using it for about a month or so and it’s great. A little on the slower side but gets the job done for a great price!
I picked this one up off Amazon. It's a game changer dude, just make sure you buy a re-mineralizer that suits your shrimp type as well.
After buying water from LFS for years, the pandemic finally pushed me into buying a small home RO system. I'd avoided it because it sounded complicated and I didn't want something else to take care of. My mistake. I've been thrilled with it so far. Has probably already paid for itself, and much more convenient.
Here's the one I bought:
I have no real expertise or experience, so if someone replies that this one is terrible and a different one would be much better, they're probably right. But it has worked very well for me. I was fighting a moderate green hair algae outbreak, and having plentiful RO water readily available encouraged me to up my water changes to where they probably should have been before. Algae is much better now.
Dunno if you're in a house or apartment or what, but the thing isn't really all that big, and if you're even slightly handy it wouldn't be that hard to hook up to a regular sink.
The aquatic life ro Di is cheap and it’s small and come with a Faucet adapter amazon
This 5 Stage has really good reviews. What minerals do you add back into your water?
If it's not rated for Aquariums, then it's probably not going to work. I would recommend instead looking at the RO buddy system on Amazon.
I'm looking at these two RO systems. Should I pay extra for the four stage model at the cost of half the GPD?
4 stage 50 gpd includes deionization filter
3 stage 100 gpd
I think if I do get it, I would ge tthat one,
I think you are talking about this