Water Treatment for Hydroponic Systems

What kind of water should I use for my hydroponic system?

All hydroponic systems use a nutrient-rich solution to feed plant roots and to stimulate growth. The most substantial ingredient in the nutrient solution is water. Water can be obtained from a variety of sources, such as wells, city supplies, rainwater barrels, and streams. It is vital to ensure that the water entering your system is pure and free from harmful contaminants. While high quality water leads to faster, healthier, and more robust plant growth, water which has not been properly treated can quickly destroy an entire garden. 

Before you begin building your hydroponic system, it is important to look at the quality of the water you will be using. Are you on city water or well water? City water can present a variety of problems, such as chlorine or chloramine. Well water is not without problems either. It can often be hard, contain too much salt, or be contaminated with bacteria. Stream water is constantly changing, and even rain water can pick up dust and other impurities as it enters storage barrels. No matter what your water source, it is important to test your water so you know just what type of treatment you will need. 

In order for your hydroponic system to thrive, you need to start with the right water. Your hydroponic system water needs to have low levels of total dissolved solids (TDS). TDS is the total amount of disolved minerals, salts, and metals in water. The TDS level is measured by parts per million (ppm). In addition to low TDS levels, your water should also be slightly acidic to neutral in its potential hydrogen (pH) level. Starting with the right water makes it much easier to make adjustments after adding nutrients. 

The best way to remove contaminants and TDS from your water source is through a process called reverse osmosis, commonly known as "RO." Reverse osmosis is a process by which water is pressurized through a semipermeable membrane, leaving unwanted minerals, contaminants, and chlorine behind. The pure product water has a low TDS level and typically has a pH level ranging from 5.0 to 6.0. You are then able to add your nutrients and adjust your pH accordingly without having to worry about effects caused by previous contaminants. Click here to view some of our hydroponic RO systems.

Water Filtration Options for Hydroponics

Reverse Osmosis Systems

  • Can produce large amounts of pure water daily
  • Removes over 99% of dissolved minerals, chlorine,
    and contaminants
  • Product water typically has pH level ranging from 5.0 to 6.0
  • Product water contains very low total dissolved solids (TDS)
  • For both well water and municipal water supplies
  • Click here to view reverse osmosis systems

Ultraviolet (UV) Purification Systems

  • Rids water of viruses, bacteria, and other microorganisms
  • Treats water that is biologically unsafe
  • Alters genetic code of a microorganism, making it unable to produce
  • Ideal for either well water or municipal water supplies where incoming water quality is questionable
  • Click here to view UV purification systems

Filtration Systems and Housings

  • Allows for a wide range of filter cartridge options
  • Users can customize the system to best fit their water supply
  • Works as a prefiltration system for RO and UV systems
  • Affordable way to reduce sediment, chlorine, or chloramines
  • Click here to view filtration systems and housings

  • Spin Down Sediment Filter Systems

    • Ideal for water sources containing heavy sediment
    • Removes sediment, shale, shell, debris, pipe scale, sand and grit
    • Tornado effect separates sediment from water
    • Sediment can be manually discharged through flush valve
    • Click here to view spin down sediment filter systems

    Hydroponic System Water Testing Equipment

    To determine the quality of your water, you will need either a meter or test kit. There are varieties of tests available which allow users to test their water for different contaminants, pH level, electrical conductivity (EC), and TDS. Once you can determine that your water is free of bacteria and contaminants, and contains low TDS, you can add nutrients and fill your hydroponic system reservoir. Throughout the growing period, you will have to track and manage pH levels as your plants absorb nutrients. Potential hydrogen in a solution can change over time, so it is important to keep a close eye so you can adjust the pH level when necessary.