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Thread: Converting hard water to soft?

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    Converting hard water to soft?

    Can any body help me with alternatives, aside from water softeners machines because those are so expensive to convert my hard water to softer water...
    thanks!

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    Re: Converting hard water to soft?

    Quote Originally Posted by yorelica View Post
    Can any body help me with alternatives, aside from water softeners machines because those are so expensive to convert my hard water to softer water...
    thanks!
    Don't use water from a water softener unless you have no other choice. If you do, use potassium chloride instead of sodium chloride in the unit.

    The only other options are to buy RO water, buy an RO unit or a distiller. The RO unit is the best option as it will pay for itself and doesn't use any electricity, (or very little), and small ones can be had for 300-400 dollars. I have a distiller that uses a 1500W heating element and takes about 20 hours to produce 10USGal. I plan to sell it and buy the RO filter only and build my own RO unit superior to the store bought ones.

    Do you know the make up of your water? What is the TDS of your tap water? You can usually get a water report from your town or city office. If it's high in calcium and magnesium say you may still be able to use it just don't add extra Ca or Mg to your nutes while growing.

    Hope this helps.

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    Re: Converting hard water to soft?

    Hi LabRat,

    Thank-you for your response and informative! I am not sure the TDS..but water is between "4.5 to 18grains"...which I (think) 18 grain is considered very hard water (ie. over 180 ppm) perhaps too hard?

    Also how is it to request a water report from cities? Is it listed on the city websites or a direct request must be sent? Thanks again!

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    420 Member gio77's Avatar
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    Re: Converting hard water to soft?

    Agreed with LR all the way around. The RO unit is your best/easiest/cheapest route. The city will furnish you upon request while some actually send out an annual report- public info & they will supply it. BTW, the water softener (depending upon starting municipal values) will likely push your total tds well over 800-1000ppm's. This is why LR suggested potassium chloride for your salts (vs Na), though neither in the levels produced will benefit your plant. Likely it will create endless problems for you. BTW, you really do need a tds meter to respond to your plants. Best!

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    Re: Converting hard water to soft?

    Quote Originally Posted by yorelica View Post
    Hi LabRat,

    Thank-you for your response and informative! I am not sure the TDS..but water is between "4.5 to 18grains"...which I (think) 18 grain is considered very hard water (ie. over 180 ppm) perhaps too hard?

    Also how is it to request a water report from cities? Is it listed on the city websites or a direct request must be sent? Thanks again!
    I'm not at all sure how grains relate to PPM but water up to about 200 ppm TDS,(Total Dissolved Solids), can be used depending upon what makes up the total of the dissolved solids. If it's very high sodium that's bad if it's more calcium carbonate etc it's not so bad. That's why you should get a water quality report. Then you know exactly what is in the water and can decide to use it or not.

    You might have to make a few phone calls if you can't find the info you need on a web site but the info is generally available free. If they get nosy and ask why you want the info tell them you want to make some wine or beer or that you're on a sodium restricted diet or your just curious about what you're putting in your body.

    Hope that helps.