View Full Version : RO/DI Finally........

06/20/2006, 09:58 PM
Well I bit the bullet and finally got an RO/DI system.
It's a Kent Maxxima. I probably could have gotten a better deal off of Air, Water, Ice or Buckeye but I wanted it operating ASAP.

One interesting thing I found out is that many of the filters can simply be replaced at Home Depot for 10%-20% cheaper than is advertised in the fish catalogs.
The problem is the DI part of it though. Since the Home Depot, Lowe's , etc. are simply selling RO systems for drinking water I'll have to find and alternative (AWI or Buckeye) to get the DI resin.
I'm also thinking of adding an extra DI canister so I can seperate the media (anion/cation). Does anyone here have any experience in recharging these at home?
My TDS meter should be here tomorrow too so I can test my first batch. I'll also be putting on the flush kit tomorrow evening after work hopefully.

I'm hoping to see at least some minor/significant benefits from the RO/DI water within the second or third water change?

Any comments are always welcomed.

06/20/2006, 10:51 PM
Hey! Clean out your mailbox! lol!

06/21/2006, 12:07 AM
IMO its not worth it to recharge your DI. if the RO is working right it should take a long time to exhaust your di. and the last time i checked the micron filters and carbon filters were a lot cheaper at F&S and that FishPlace

06/21/2006, 04:57 PM
I'll check again on the pricing as soon as I get a chance but I'm pretty sure locally was a little cheaper and no S&H charges either.

06/21/2006, 05:53 PM
Ya That Fish Place has good prices on the replacement filters..

wds21921 what kind of water were you using prior to your RO/DI set up? Were you buying water by the gallon or were you using Tap water?

06/21/2006, 06:37 PM
Tap water, then to DI only water, then back to tap water after the price increases (cartridges) and then Culligan by the 5 gallon bottle. Now it's all RO/DI.

For the last 4-5 years it seems as though our water system gets heavy phosphates in the summertime? In Elkton, many large developments and apartment complexes apparently use there own filtration systems even though the town water supply is already filtered. Wondering...

06/21/2006, 08:24 PM
dave, I bought about a 2 year supply of sediment and carbon block filters for my coralife pureflow 50 gpd unit from BIGALS last year. came to about 25 bucks. they fit most RO's i believe. i change mine every six months. lowest prices ive ever seen.

but for membrane replacement or mixed bed resin, go to buckey field supply or AIR WATER ICE. buckey has 5 lbs. of mixed resin for $39.

06/22/2006, 07:30 PM
Nice, the DI resin is what I was semi concerned with. I think our water here is loaded with iron still, even after it's been processed. My last DI only cartridge lasted me about 30 gallons. Well below the claim of 50-150 gallons of usage.
Granted, I didn't have the carbon block, micron filter or RO but it lasted much less in duration than in previous years.

06/27/2006, 01:00 PM
If you get a refillable DI chamber, you can buy the stuff in bulk.

e-bay has some cheap DI resin - good place to check - I got mine from Aquasafe Canada - 4 complete sets of filters and DI resin pretty cheap (only the best deal when you buy in bulk)

You can also do buckeye - they have very large chambers for DI resin - you should only have to change it out once a year - I change(d) mine about every 6-months.

Filter direct is also a good place to get cheap RO/DI equipment on E-bay

Wish I could have told you - the Aquasafe complete 6-stage system is only about $140 shipped - and comes with all the bells and whistles (connections, all tubing, faucet taps, and storage tank)

06/27/2006, 10:13 PM
That's ok Nick I'd seen that posted before but since it was new to me I wanted to go with something that was relatively common in the market to start with.
I do appreciate the DI sources though, that's what I was looking for.

So far out of 44 gallons, I'm beginning to see a dark yellow coloring in the first filter stage. My TDS is still steady at 1ppm :).

Yes Ken I talked with someone about the interchangability of the cartridges and she said that fortunately the market set some standard sizes for these right off the bat which helps us all immensely.

06/27/2006, 11:34 PM
oh , thats good news. i thought so from what i've read. common interchangeable parts. go for the 1 micron replacements, they will keep your TFC membrane from plugging up longer.

06/29/2006, 09:57 PM
One week after implamentation and I'm already now seeing a HUGE reduction in hair and nuisance algaes.

My Aqua C Pro had been pulling out some (little darker than green tea) stuff up to using the RO/DI water. In the last several days the (bad) algae has apparently been dying off or removing itself and winding up in the skimmer which is now super dark again, like when I first got it. I even added quite a few polyps and shrooms over the last week or two and the tank seems to be very stable.

I also had the beginnings (pre RO/DI) of a cyano outbreak (that time of the water season here) and even that's struggling to stay alive lol. I've got about 4-5 decorative type algae growing and doing very well. The Halimeada is really taking off too. I've got at least 5 bushes of it growing, yes bushes lol.

06/29/2006, 10:20 PM
Here are the species of algae I can identify so far that are growing. It turns out to be more than I thought too.

1) Acetabularia Crenulata
2) Halimeda (lots of it)
3) Stypopodium Zonale
4) Caulerpa Racemosa
5) Valonia (bubble algae dying off as we speak:)
6) Caulerpa ashmeadii (I think)

These are only the ones I've found so far. Most if not all of these I attribute to the rock I purchased from Zack a while ago. Much of the algae and baby brittle stars died off (or so it seemed). As best as I can tell everything that was in Zack's tank is now in mine :) finally. Including at least 6-7 baby or tiny brittle stars (black and white).

06/29/2006, 10:59 PM
Here is the company I purchased my RO membrane replacements from. Dow Filmtec and much better pricing:

07/02/2006, 10:46 AM
My TDS reading is now at 0 and I'm taking Ken's approach of stocking up on filters ahead of time.

Looking at everything in the tank now I wish I would have taken this route much sooner.

Is there an REI near here? I saw they have a 7 gallon container with a spigot on it. That would be excellent for a top off tank.

07/04/2006, 12:08 AM
whats an REI ?

07/04/2006, 05:38 PM
It's a store I think but I found my solution. In the auto-department in the Super Wal Mart here (Elkton), they had exactly what I needed. 7 gallon dark blue propylene container with spigot. I've now got 19 gallons of RO/DI top off, in storage :).

Also picked up two battery (D cell) operated air pumps for $1 less than most fish stores charge and almost no gas ;).
33 hours on 2 -D cells. Good for RO/DI aeration and or emergency air for my tank in a power failure.

07/04/2006, 10:28 PM
that's really good to know about the air-pumps - do they connect to an outlet so they turn on automatically?

07/05/2006, 10:23 PM
No that was the only bad part. I think those are only available from fish stores or perhaps maybe Marine Boat stores? The ones I have are manually turned on but it's still better than nothing.

Since it appears Noah is building in our area recently (pun), I don't want to wait until it's too late to be able to take some preemptive measures.

07/05/2006, 11:55 PM
wds21921 "7 gallon dark blue propylene container with spigot." Wow I was looking at that last week but deciding I needed to save the couple of bucks to feed myself I decided not to purchase one lol.

I am in Newark and the water is notorious for being bad here. I hadn't thought I could afford to run a RO/DI here with frequent filter changes, but I have found I can't afford not to. I have been buying distilled from that walmart something like .70 a gallon. When they run out I buy distilled from superfresh has it on sale for .96(isn't if funny that it's been about .98 for three years and they raised the price to 1.20ish and then put it on sale... People will buy anything on sale I guess.)

I just moved to the area and have been dying to join some kind of reef club as I've done FOWLR and just starting to look into corals. Stinks though that the last two months of the Delaware Reef Club which meets a couple blocks from my house has had there meetings the same time I've had classes I couldn't skip. I am hoping to make the next one, but not sure. I hope they are ok with real newbies.


07/06/2006, 12:32 AM
Does anyone know if there is chloramine in Newark city water? I am on Kells Ave. if that helps at all. I have a 24GPD coralife two stage unit. I also have a mixed-bed DI add on from coral life which I am debating on using.

I will probably hook it all up tomorrow along with my inline TDS meter discarding the first 5 gallons or so regardless of the TDS readings.


07/06/2006, 12:45 AM
Ive got one of those blue water jugs too. never used it though except to move MTM's tank. lve been looking at those air pumps too for back up. they are for keeping minnies alive in a bucket. but work for a tank too.

07/06/2006, 01:34 AM
We used some battery operated ones in the lab I worked at to get specimen back in the lab with minimum die off and stress. They are pretty powerful and just about everyone says that the back up ones that come on when there is no current from the outlet are a very good idea. After last weeks outages I wished several times I had the money for some.

07/06/2006, 06:56 AM
Jon - stop on by to check out my tank, have a few beers, and we can discuss the trials and tribulations of Reefing in Newark, I'm on Choate street (by kate's)- shoot me a PM and I'll give you my #

07/06/2006, 06:48 PM
I'm not sure about the chloramine additive in Newark City Water Jon. You might want to call down to the town hall to see if they can put you in touch with someone who oversees the water treatment facility.

Sarah (Samala) might even have some insight into this. I've not seen her on here latey though.

Of course newbies are welcome, I've been doing it for a while and I'm still learning everyday. Ask Ken lol.