tds no health risk or the water looks clear and taste good!
By general consensus most folks at this site believe the need for water changes is due to the continual corruption of water quality by ontogeny. This defiling of water purity apparently is the result of TDS or total dissolved solids that can only be removed by changing aquarium water or some sort of membrane filter. When TDS are not removed then all sorts of terrible events begin to occur like ph crashes, elevated levels of nutrients such as phosphate and sulfates and I think possibly nitrates. It is important to remember that fish in a TDS saturated environment will have their internal systems taxed in a negative manner. One can conclude that TDS is a very bad thing especially for the happy healthily fish crowd (1).
The general view is that using a tds meter is the only way to determine or measure the levels of tds. TDS meters test the electrical continuity of the sample because pure water will not conduct electrical current therefore only TDS will provide electrical continuity. This leads to the question are all total dissolved solids capable of electrical continuity. Will nitrate or chloride ions or ammonia anon conduct electricity?
In fact what is considered a safe level of TDS.
Some folks will say Fresh water by definition contains no more than 1500 mg/l of TDS (2). I was not able to locate any definition of fresh water tds measurements other than the federal government recommended maxim level of 500 ppm (3).
When I searched for the meaning of TDS (there is a good one in the article Total Dissolved Solids (2)) there is also another notion of tds and that is water purity.
What is the meaning of purity? The first definition is chastity; another could be clearness of thought or expression or one might consider the notion of purity as a visual or optical clearness the ability to see through something.
Total Dissolved Solids
The measure of the combined content of all inorganic and organic substances. ….Primary sources of TDS in water come from natural sources, sewage, urban run-off, industrial wastewater, and chemicals used in the water treatment process. A high concentration of TDS does not pose a health risk but it does affect the aesthetic quality of the water, (4).
The Secondary Drinking Water Regulations control contaminants in drinking water that primarily affect the aesthetic qualities of water. Several of these -- chloride, sulfate, total dissolved solids -- are ionized contaminants. Color and odor are contaminants which cause objectionable sensory responses to the water.(5)
Since total dissolved solids is a measurement of aesthetic clearness of water and not a measurement of pollutants or a rating of healthiness of water. Why are there secondary standards? EPA believes that if these contaminants are present in your water at levels above these standards, the contaminants may cause the water to appear cloudy or colored, or to taste or smell bad. This may cause a great number of people to stop using water from their public water system even though the water is actually safe to drink.(6)
Water quality is a tuff issue as pointed out in other post and sometimes meaning can become clouded yet I can not clearly see how a measurement of aesthetic qualities of water (Total Dissolved Solids) be logically transferred to the terrible events of doom and destruction that has been projected by the ones who know.
One would think moderators and experienced fish keepers would know that TDS is a measurement of aesthetic qualities of water not contamination.
When moderators and others who know, post incomplete and misguided post, articles and opinions is it just a delightful distortion of facts?
is …….THERE AN EVIL lurking OUT THERE that only can be seen by the shadow.
(3) Water Quality Terms and Definitions | The Official Website for the City of Tucson, Arizona
(4) Glossary | APEC Water
(5) What is TDS and its relation to water? | APEC Water
(6) Secondary Drinking Water Regulations: Guidance for Nuisance Chemicals | Drinking Water Contaminants | US EPA
It seem's all has been answered in first paragraph Pop, if primary concern is fishes health.
Been at this hobby for a long time and tried the no water change's that some seem to favor (largely out of laziness).
Not until you have seen the result's from both ...can one appreciate the benefit's of clean water.
TDS and what it may or may not represent as far as health risk to human's is well...much ado about nothing from this hobbyist's standpoint.
Is the fishes that are my responsiblity and over the year's,,I have found that they do indeed thrive in clean water (regular water changes).
You, and other's may do as you wish but for me and many many other's, the fifteen minutes a week it takes to perform a water change ain't nothin and provides much better result's than the few to no water changes I tried early in the hobby when it was believed that old water was more stable.
Ain't till you try and add new fishes to the old water that one start's to grasp the benefit's of regularly removing dissolved organic's and replacing them with clean water.
Hello you seem to have missed the boat 1077 & thekoimaiden:
I was not pointing to changing water because it is needed I was pointing out that total dissolved solids measure only the aesthetic aspects of water and these considerations are taste and smell of the water as well as how clear the water is, that is all that TDS measures.
There are much better standards to indicate the presents of pollution and contamination of aquarium water or drinking water. If you are concerned with nitrates would you think using a standard that measures aesthetic qualities of the water column appropriate or would you use a nitrate test kit that will provide a more accurate measure.
I have a strong suspicion that you folks would go for the nitrate test kit as I would because TDS value would not provide the actual concentrations of nitrate; though TDS value will indicate if the aquarium water smells or taste bad or the water column lacks clarity.
Again total dissolved solids only measure the aesthetic aspects of water. Folks that think different have been sold a bill of goods that is composed of misinformation, incomplete and ill thought-out notions.
Show me the science and facts that oppose the factual base for the definition and uses I have provided for TDS.
…….THERE AN EVIL lurking OUT THERE that only can be seen by the shadow.
Since reading the articles poses so much difficulty, here is the definition:
Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) is a measure of the combined content of all organic and inorganic substances contained in the water in molecular, ionized or micro-granular (colloidal sol) suspended form. Generally the operational definition is that the solids must be small enough to survive filtration through a sieve the size of two micrometer.
TDS affect fish, to varying degrees depending upon the species. The rest is in the article.
I may not know exactly what's going on if I walk into a room and find the air has a green tint and a foul smell, but you can bet I wouldn't leave my kids in it.
Regarding your comment,
Quick search on the internet... Google..
"Effect's of Total dissolved Solid's on Aquatic life" plenty of such info exist's.(scientific studies).
Plenty of folk's breeding soft water species of fishes,and other's who breed very expensive Shrimp' s, some selling for as much as 100.00 dollar's a piece,take pain's to keep TDS as low as possible.
Hard water species more forgiving.
Hello tropical fish keeping community:
I must recapitulate my previous post in this thread and must say I have fallen victim to my own predetermined notions after reviewing the science and facts that I requested.
Thank you all for getting my ducks in a row.
Though what I read about tds toxicity leaves some questions such as is there any studies for the toxicity of tds in aquariums? Most of the facts seems to be related to game and food species of fish and are representative of general problems with reproduction such as Harding of eggs and fertilizing eggs. Not shorting of life span in salmon or trout ect.
SUMMARY OF RESEARCH
No adverse effects were seen in either the embryo (1,961 mg/L synthetic effluent) or the swim-up fry test (2,080 mg/L) when exposed to 100% synthetic effluent.
No adverse effects were seen in % survival of chironomid larvae when exposed to full strength Red Dog Mine synthetic effluent (2,089 mg/L TDS), although growth was apparently reduced by about 45% in the same solution. No adverse effects were observed in chironomid larvae exposed to 1,134 mg/L TDS.
Reduced survival of Chironomidae larvae occurred at 1,750 mg/L and 2,240 mg/L, but not at 1,220 mg/L TDS. No growth effects were observed at any exposure level.
tds toxicity appears to have different effects on different life forms and sometimes no effect depending on the stage of development. Is there a difference between synthetic effluents used and actual tds found in the home aquarium?
Is it correct to think that after many generations of adaption to levels of tds a life form may need specific levels of tds to survive? If this is the case is it really toxic.
I am not sure that I agree with the science of tds. Since no conclusions can be determined about the reported effects of tds concentrations, were the effects the result of high tds levels or the sudden change in tds or absence of exposure time to synthetic tds solutions but I will no longer contest it.
….. there an evil lurking out there somewhere that can only be seen by the shadow.
My article went into all this and answered the questions. And you will note in the References that the sources used were all related to aquarium fish scientists and experts.
Aside from that, there is the common sense aspect. Fish "adapt" by evolution over thousands of years. Soft water fish live in water with zero or near-zero TDS. It simply defies logic to expect them to be at their best in anything other than very similar water. The many effects of inappropriate water parameters is detailed in the article.
I'm with you Byron.
Are two approaches to take in my view.
(1) Try and determine at what rate the accumulative effect's of TDS take a toll on particular species at differing times of fishes development, and keep level's below this (water changes,chemical filtration)
(2)Keep level's as low as possible to protect ALL species.
The second approach seem's the easiest to implement and safest approach for aquarium fishes,invert's.
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