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Thread: Zero water

  1. #1

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    Zero water

    Saw this ad on TV this morning. Reminded me of a better version of a brita filter. Claims 0 ppm for dissolved solids and TV ad claims they'll send you the TDS meter 'free'.
    Only does about 22.5-30 gallons before filters have to be changed and the filters dont seem to be on the cheap side. $55 for 4 filters. Maybe growers with small collections would find this handy? What do ya'll think?
    http://www.zerowater.com/

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    scottychaos's Avatar
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    ZeroWater scores a perfect 000 for detectable dissolved solids as measured by a TDS meter.
    hmmm..thats not necessarily zero dissolved solids in reality..
    its only zero detectable dissolved solids..

    so the question is..what does a TDS meter detect? and what does it not detect?
    the fact that this system uses "ion exchange" implies to me that its not necessarily safe for CP's..

    all Ion exchange does is swap some ions for different ones..improving the water for drinking, but not necessarily making it any softer overall..
    the only man-made systems that truly *remove* mineral hardness are reverse osmosis or steam distilliation..
    (and natural evaporation and condensation of course..in the case of rain water)

    Scot

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    Av8tor1's Avatar
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    I use mixed bed demineralization by ionization as part of my RO/DI system.
    (I assume so does the unit in question, but buyer beware... it could get very expensive to maintain without the initial RO stage)

    (Copied and pasted from an earlier reply of mine on the subject over at ICPS's forum)

    Deionization and Demineralization by Ionization both refer to specialized forms of Ion Exchange. (both terms are often used interchangeably, but there is a slight difference...true DI will also remove bacteria)

    Deionization removes ions as does Ion Exchange. Ion exchange deionization (DI) columns use synthetic resins similar to those used in water softeners.

    Deionization systems use a two-stage process to remove virtually all ionic material remaining in water. That is why we call the process Deionization.

    In Deionization two types of synthetic resins are used, one to remove positively charged ions (cations) and another to remove negatively charged ions (anions). Cation deionization (DI) resins ions remove cations, such as calcium, magnesium and sodium and replace them with the hydrogen (H+) ion. Anion deionization resins remove anions, such as chloride, sulfate and bicarbonate and replace them with the hydroxide (OH-) ion.

    In Deionization, these displaced H+ and OH- ions combine to form additional H2O

    In Mixed-Bed deionization systems, the anion and cation resins are blended into a single tank or vessel. Generally, mixed-bed systems will produce higher quality water with a lower total capacity than two-bed systems. Mixed bed deionization resins have design capacities and must be typically be replaced upon exhaustion. To extend bead life this stage is usually performed after the water has gone through the RO process.

    Deionization can produce extremely high-quality water in terms of dissolved ions or minerals, up to the maximum resistance of 18.3 megohms/cm. RO/DI are the standard for the pharmaceutical, Electronic and Nuclear industries.

    HTH's
    Av

    http://icps.proboards.com/index.cgi?...ay&thread=1835

  4. #4
    War. War never changes. Est's Avatar
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    hmmm..thats not necessarily zero dissolved solids in reality..
    its only zero detectable dissolved solids..

    so the question is..what does a TDS meter detect? and what does it not detect?
    the fact that this system uses "ion exchange" implies to me that its not necessarily safe for CP's..
    I think Av covered it, but I'll throw a little something extra. TDS meters, to my understanding, generally work via electrical conductivity. So, what they "detect" are ions. This's a worthwhile measurement for plants because soils can generally only really hold on to charged particles, and plants only really tend to take up charged solids (can anyone think of any good exceptions?). Covlatently bonded particles tend to either get leached out because they don't have an affinity for the soil, form larger colloids which're inaccessible to roots, or get munched on by one of our non-plant friends (and eventually mineralized).

    So if the filter removes all of the ions, it's pretty effectively removed everything that plant roots can access (in terms of solids, anyway), so it is a useful metric.

    As for the ion exchange issue, it's pretty easy to replace ions with hydroxyls or protons (OH-, H+, respectively) to which your water dissociates (to a degree) anyway.
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    So the true question is do you get to keep the TDS meter after you send back the filter

    But jokes aside these are the same questions that come up with any filter. This is one I'd have to pass on.

  6. #6
    War. War never changes. Est's Avatar
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    But jokes aside these are the same questions that come up with any filter. This is one I'd have to pass on.
    Honestly, I'd be willing to try this filter for water for my plants. My concerns are less about the efficacy of the product than the economic. How many filters do I need to buy (and how long of a time with that sum to) before it becomes more expensive than a simple RO setup? My guess is not many, and not long.
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    BigBella's Avatar
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    Provided that the TDS content of the water is reasonably low from the outset (say, 150 ppm or below), it should work reasonably well for a small number of plants; but in areas where mineral-laden water can exceed 500-600 ppm (as is the case in many parts of Northern California, dependent upon wells), those oh-so-expensive replacement filters would not last terribly long.

    Even RO membranes / filters here have a far shorter working life than any of their ratings or specs would predict; and the Zerowater website suggests that such a user could only expect a yield of 8 gallons per filter (at a cost of approximately $2.00 per gallon for some of the replacement unit prices I have seen) -- six times the cost of what I currently pay for RO. Just how steep a decline in water quality to expect beyond that eight, I have no way of knowing . . .
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    Quote Originally Posted by Est View Post
    Honestly, I'd be willing to try this filter for water for my plants. My concerns are less about the efficacy of the product than the economic. How many filters do I need to buy (and how long of a time with that sum to) before it becomes more expensive than a simple RO setup? My guess is not many, and not long.
    Well though I'd give it 5 stars on ease of use, I'd also have to give 1 star on output yield. The manufacturer states the filters are rated for 22.5 - 30 gallons of pure water and replacement filters run $56 for 4 filters or $100 for 8. That's also ignoring the fact that we are not sure what elements are or are not filtered for our use.

    The air water and ice filter I purchased did have a (compared to this filter) high cost but filters only cost $33 and run a few hundred gallons using my water of ~260 ppm. Once of the big ups of it as well is that it contains a DI filter which clears everything from my water. Now it may be like comparing apples and oranges but I'm glad to see that new innovations are coming out for our potential use and on a smaller scale.

    If you do end up trying it out Est let us know how the water turns out your test subjects.

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