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It depends on your tap water and what you want. If you want to keep discus or any plants that need ultra-high water quality and you have hard water out of tap, then you might need the RO. But, for the average aquarium with average plants/fish, it is usually not needed. If you look through the "APC Polls" threads under the General Discussions forums (I think), you will see a poll with good discussion on R.O. water and who uses it.

-Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #4
It depends on your tap water and what you want. If you want to keep discus or any plants that need ultra-high water quality and you have hard water out of tap, then you might need the RO. But, for the average aquarium with average plants/fish, it is usually not needed. If you look through the "APC Polls" threads under the General Discussions forums (I think), you will see a poll with good discussion on R.O. water and who uses it.

-Dave
It looks like it is a split between users and non users. Thanks for the APC poll idea. I had not seen that yet.
 

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I am setting up a 180 gal planted tank. Should I use tap or RO water?
If you are starting into the hobby with a 180 gal tank then the implication is money is not an issue. Get an RO system. In the long run you will probably want that quality water.

RO water can be used in all possible tank set-ups with some modifications. If you use only tap water, you are stuck with the plants and fish that will live in your particular tap water.
 

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I don't think anyone would disagree that there are a lot of things to buy for a planted tank. And, most of those things are useful, if not absolutely essential. So, if you can afford it, buy as many "toys" as you want. You will soon decide which are worth your effort to use and which aren't. And, what you will find worth the effort, some of us will think is a pain to work with.
 

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what you will find worth the effort, some of us will think is a pain to work with.
Yep, I actually tried using RO water at every weekly change once (about 10 gallons each time) thinking I needed (or my plants needed) the 'cleaner' water. That lasted only 2 weeks and I was already tired of it. So, now I use it maybe once a month (actually haven't used it lately in the past 2 monts) at water changes and am leaning toward never using it. Sure, there are plants I won't be able to keep with my tap water, but there are PLENTY other plants out there that are just as cool. ;)

Before you go buying stuff, take a water sample to a Local Fish Store or a PetsMart and have them test it for you (unless you have a kit handy). You may find that your tap water is pretty darn good.

-Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Yep, I actually tried using RO water at every weekly change once (about 10 gallons each time) thinking I needed (or my plants needed) the 'cleaner' water. That lasted only 2 weeks and I was already tired of it. So, now I use it maybe once a month (actually haven't used it lately in the past 2 monts) at water changes and am leaning toward never using it. Sure, there are plants I won't be able to keep with my tap water, but there are PLENTY other plants out there that are just as cool. ;)

Before you go buying stuff, take a water sample to a Local Fish Store or a PetsMart and have them test it for you (unless you have a kit handy). You may find that your tap water is pretty darn good.

-Dave
I will check my water. I have a RO/DI from when I did a Reef that is why I ask befor I sell it.
 

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I wouldn't sell it if you already have it, it's one of the items that's worth holding onto, like a uv sterilizer, it has benefits in certain situations.

I use one for two reasons, my tap water has heavy nitrogens, and I like having total control over my hardness and alkalinity. Water treatment plants can do many things to cause sudden inconsistencies.
 
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