RO water vs distilled

Betaktical

New member
I use RO water in my tank but it's not deionized. Is that still better than distilled or should I use distilled instead. Don't have my own RO yet but it will be soon and then I can add the extra filter. But for time being which is better


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anthonys51

New member
distilled is better than ro. ro doesnt take out everything pretty sure distilled takes out like 99.9 percent of the stuff. i would use bottled distilled over bottled ro water
 

chammergren

New member
I have been led to believe that steam distillation is a more effective way of purifying water than reverse osmosis. I am sure someone here as more knowledge on the subject to clarify though.
 

Betaktical

New member
Perfect. If I switch to distilled it won't mess up parameters or anything? Thanks for all the help


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AK707

New member
i don't even have water in my tank yet but i already ordered an RO/DI unit...it only makes sense to start off with the best quality water possible. Definitely work one into your budget asap
 

ssick92

New member
And will that also help with 40 ppm nitrate?


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It won't mess up your parameters. And it isn't the distilled water that is helping your nitrate go down, it is the water change where you are replacing your 40 ppm water with 0 ppm water (which happens to be salt mixed into distilled water).

With that said, it is much cheaper in the long run to get an RO/DI system of your own. Distilled water is expensive, and you can get a quality RO/DI unit for $200 bucks (BRS or Marine Depot systems work great). Do the math and figure out how many water changes with distilled water it will take for you to break even on that RO/DI unit and the choice becomes clear.
 

2smokes

In Memoriam
Distilled is better than RODI water but is also much more expensive.The bottled water sold as ,,distilled,, water is most of the time just RODI water.
 

Betaktical

New member
It won't mess up your parameters. And it isn't the distilled water that is helping your nitrate go down, it is the water change where you are replacing your 40 ppm water with 0 ppm water (which happens to be salt mixed into distilled water).



With that said, it is much cheaper in the long run to get an RO/DI system of your own. Distilled water is expensive, and you can get a quality RO/DI unit for $200 bucks (BRS or Marine Depot systems work great). Do the math and figure out how many water changes with distilled water it will take for you to break even on that RO/DI unit and the choice becomes clear.



I know it's not the difference in the water but I have a protein skimmer a canister that pretty much a reactor and good flow in my tank with well established live rock. 10% weekly water changes and it never goes down. I feed once a day about a quarter cube of mysis so not a lot. 2 clowns 1 Cardinal 1 fairy wrasse, urchin 2 skunk shrimp and 3 peps. Also 5 hermit and two Mexican turbos. Just can't seem to get nitrate down


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ssick92

New member
I know it's not the difference in the water but I have a protein skimmer a canister that pretty much a reactor and good flow in my tank with well established live rock. 10% weekly water changes and it never goes down. I feed once a day about a quarter cube of mysis so not a lot. 2 clowns 1 Cardinal 1 fairy wrasse, urchin 2 skunk shrimp and 3 peps. Also 5 hermit and two Mexican turbos. Just can't seem to get nitrate down


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Did you do a nitrate test on your source water that you were previously using? That very well could have been causing it.

Also, canister filters can become nitrate factories if not maintained (at least) weekly. They typically aren't used for this reason. What are you running in your canister?

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Betaktical

New member
Did you do a nitrate test on your source water that you were previously using? That very well could have been causing it.

Also, canister filters can become nitrate factories if not maintained (at least) weekly. They typically aren't used for this reason. What are you running in your canister?

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No I never even thought of that. I will try that for sure. I'm working on getting better test kits too but I just had a kid and looking to buy a house so money is kinda tight. 1st stage on canister is LR rubble 2nd is bio sponge with carbon and 3rd stage is phosgard bag.


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reddtiger88

New member
It is probably the sponge, if it is the filter. Unless you clean it every few days the matter in the sponge accumulates and decomposes. It could definitely be a combo, or hell, there could be three causes.
 

neiltus

New member
Most distilled water sold bottled in the US is ran through an RO unit at some point in the process (read the label), and may also have been ran through a UV.

I own a distiller at the office, and an RODI unit at home. Both produce decent water. One method uses more power, takes longer and has higher solids. Yep, it's distilled. My distiller gets to about 4-5ppm, my 6 stage RODI is at zero.

Small distillers are not efficient and need to be cleaned pretty frequently.

So, bottled distilled vs RODI. Buy an RODI. If it were cheaper and better, well, you would see people buying the distilled bottled (that is RODI as well).
 

Betaktical

New member
It is probably the sponge, if it is the filter. Unless you clean it every few days the matter in the sponge accumulates and decomposes. It could definitely be a combo, or hell, there could be three causes.



It's not the floss though. It's a media sponge. I stopped using the floss cause I was replacing it every week. And how would live rock rubble carbon and phosgard be producing nitrates?


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homer1475

New member
Anything that can trap detritus can and will become a nitrate factory unless cleaned several times a week.

The reason for not using a canister filter is they are a pain to shut down and clean out several times a week.
 

ssick92

New member
It's not the floss though. It's a media sponge. I stopped using the floss cause I was replacing it every week. And how would live rock rubble carbon and phosgard be producing nitrates?


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The "media sponge" is probably your issue. Detritus gets trapped in it, decomposes, and eventually turns into nitrate. That is the definition of a nitrate factory... The LR, Carbon, and Phosgard aren't producing nitrates.

Filter floss and sponges are essentially the same thing, and IMO filter floss is much easier to change out because you just toss the old and put in the new instead of having to shut down the canister filter, remove the sponge, rinse, sterilize, and restart.
 

Tooboot

New member
I don't have an RO/DI system due to water availability on a well (long story), and given the hardness of our water I'd be changing cartridges way to frequently, instead I buy the Distilled water in 5 gallon jugs (water cooler jugs). it probably is more expensive, but I know what I am getting, the ppm of dissolved mineral solids is indicated on the bottle. the producers are in my city and I have worked for them in the past so I know their process, and testing frequency of the water. no issues so far. I did find that my PH and Alk were a little low, and am now wondering if that is due to the distillation process.
if you can't get an RO/DI system I would definitely recommend the distilled water as the way to go. as another post mentions, when producing distilled water they usually go through various steps, including distillation (due to wanting to maintain the distillers over longer periods of time, they aren't cheap).
 

Sk8r

Staff member
RC Mod
Depends on your source. Distilled water in one brand sold in Oklahoma turned out to have copper contamination from the hood used in the distillation vapor capture. Copper, is of course, lethal depending on concentration and species.
 
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