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Cultivated Reef

purigen/carbon/gfo combo


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You should never use tap water because of all of the other dissolved substances in it such as copper and lead which will build up in your aquarium. If you do frequent water changes the media will not keep up.

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I wouldn't use it unless you can prove that it is free of heavy metals, and dissolved organics, which you really can't so use a RO. My LFS sells RO/DI for $0.18 per gallon and they make it fresh everyday. It test with my TDS meter at 0.0... Good stuff!


Tastes great too, if you like that electric taste!

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Most people run at least gfo/carbon when they use RO/Di or distilled. Some also run purigen. Water is probably the cheapest thing in the hobby...why start off on the wrong foot.

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  • 2 months later...

If you boil water with your fish in it you might get a nice soup or you can use ro water and not worry about adding gunk in your tank. You can however boil water and trap the steam condisation on a sheet of plastic and have it drip into a container and use that water but it would probably be easier to get ro water.

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so what does tap water thats been boiled, chilled, than ran through carbon and phospate remover, purigen, and being skimmed....have that RO/DI doesnt....that is harmful for reefs? seems like a ro/di filter in itself


and how does the RO/DI do it?

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This is a lost cause...


Boiling tap water does nothing, still a ton of TDS. You also can not skim freshwater so good luck with that.




Screw it, just use tap water the rest of us have no idea what we are talking about

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Boiling the water concentrates the wastes and makes it worse. The pure water escapes as steam and the crap gets left behind.

Nothing, let me repeat, nothing replaces RO/DI. Not carbon (which is used as a form of pretreatment for RO/DI), not purigen, not GFO, not a poly filter or Kold Ster il, not an ecoaqualizer, not a distillation unit, nothing.

The closest would be the distillation unit but it can still have volatiles which travel with the captured steam and get condensed back into the water. The cost of owning and operating a still is momumental compared to a good RO/DI which is generally less than 5 cents a gallon to operate including the cost of the water and sewer rates and replacement filters and resins. It does not get any better or cheaper.

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I heard toliet water boiled to 189 deg. then ran through a 10 tube beaker set over a bunsen burner and then cooled at 42 deg for a week then swirled around is the way to go.. but who knows these days....lol.... I spend 4$ for 5 gallons of water once ever 10 or so days.. thats nothing when it comes to the cost of a reef tank and the money it saves in all the treatments for alage from tap water...

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But the algae is not water related if it is operating correctly.

I started using RO/DI in about 1990 myself so at least 20 years ago. It does make a difference.

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  • 2 weeks later...

my neighbor used to do reef's back in the early 70's and doesn't anymore and was blown away by the advances in technology...when he started they were still using under gravel filters for reef tanks, so think about that. RO/DI forces water through an almost impenetrable membrane (think virgin girlfriend) allowing ONLY water molecules to be pushed through....it is impossible to remove copper, lead, mercury, etc. through any other means.... you can use distilled, tap, etc. but long term you're gonna get more hair algae, more cyano, and more diatoms....you'll be scraping your glass once every day or two, vs once or twice a week... all those medias: carbon, phosguard, chemipure elite, no matter what combo you make you just can't pull out the metals


people's tanks crash for millions of reasons, the least of which is because they use RO/DI....however, if you let your filters/membranes on your RO/DI filter go bad, then you can have issues.

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whole foods sells ro/di for about 39 cents/gallon. it takes many gallons to offset an ro/di unit.


if you use a lot of water, buying your own filter might be cost-effective (and is certainly convenient)


tap water is more likely to add problems than solve them, imo.

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