Help me understand when is best to change which filters on my RODI unit please.

Discussion in 'Bulk Reef Supply' started by fishbox, Oct 13, 2017.

  1. Forsaken77

    Forsaken77 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2016
    Messages:
    824
    Likes Received:
    405
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    There really is no set time limit with the filters. You should also optimally have a triple inline tds monitor. You place it on the source water, before the membrane, and after the DI resin. You should also have a flow restrictor that allows flushing. You can open and close it. You want to make sure you fluah the unit for a few minutes before you make water. You'll see the tds rise and then fall again. Thwn once it flushes out the creep, you re engage the restrictor. I use a 3-way ball valve that allows the water to bypass the DI resin when flushing. It goes after the membrane and you run one side to the drain and the other side goes to the DI resin. So when you flush, you switch to the drain side, then switch back to the resin when making water.

    As for the sediment filter, there are different qualities and different micron ratings just like filter socks. You generally don't want a large micron size because the sediments can get through and clog the carbon block. I use a 1 micron sediment filter that is a high quality and lasts longer. If you have a lot of sediment and go through the filters fast, then a 5 micron would be used.

    Next, the carbon block. Being you have chloramines, I would stick with the universal carbon block from BRS that you probably got. It's blue. The way I measure the carbon block is to see if there's chlorine in the water. Don't have experience with chloramines.

    The membrane. You should make sure to flush before making water and when your rejection rate gets below 90% you chuck it. They say it has a 98% rejection rate, but that's at 77 degrees. Warmer water will pass through the membrane easier than cold will. Most people just use cold water, but the rejection rate will be lower because less water will pass through the membrane. Using warmer water will increase the amount of sediment from your hot water heater or water tank. You can see a higher tds on the source water if you run it luke warm.

    Lastly, the DI resin. Are you sure you have color changing resin? You can either manually add DI resin to a canister, and it must be packed tight, or you can buy a premade resin block. I typically use the Spectrapure High Capacity Silicabuster DI Resin. It's the best available in dealing with silicates in the water, which cause diatoms.

    Hope that helps.
     
    chefjpaul, rkpetersen and fishbox like this.

  2. fishbox

    fishbox Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2015
    Messages:
    549
    Likes Received:
    257
  3. Forsaken77

    Forsaken77 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2016
    Messages:
    824
    Likes Received:
    405
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    You have your unit by the washing machine... Good. Where the washing machine hose dumps its water into a pipe, wedge your waste water line in that same pipe and zip-tie it to the washing machine hose if you can. That way it'll stay in place and you don't have to sit there holding it, lol.

    After looking at the pic of your resin, it definitely looks like channeling because the resin isn't packed tight enough.

    When you pack it, fill the canister a quarter, then gently bump the bottom of the canister on a hard surface so it packs down. Then add another quarter and keep doing that. When you get to the top you wipe your finger around the threaded area to clear the beads and squish the foam in there. It has to be packed ultra tight or the water will pick the path of least resistance. That's why I go with the Spectrapure, because it lasts longer, is premade, and deals with silicates. BRS has a video on packing it properly.

    But as for your high tds from the membrane, make sure you have the inline tds monitor on and watch the input side that's after the membrane when flushing. Because you'll see it rise and when it gets down to 3 or 4 (or as low as it goes) you should start making water.

    That 3-way ball valve I linked to will save you a ton of money because all of your flush water with high tds won't go through the DI resin and wasting it. There is also a Tube Divider where you can have both waste water lines (from the membrane and from the ball valve) combine into one output instead of 2 separate lines.

    If you get a handheld meter, an accurate one isn't cheap. I went that route (the $15 ones) and got a different reading all the time. The COM-100 that BRS uses in their video is the best bang for the buck but is around $60. Plus they need to be calibrated, so fluid to buy.

    With your 2-way inline meter, make sure the pins inside the probes are side by side as the water flows through the pins, not one after the other. It takes its reading as the water passes between the pins. The triple inline monitor would do exactly what you have now, but also tell you the tds of your source water before it gets to the first filter. So you know what you're working with. Or you can just move one of the probes temporarily to the front. Always try to keep a few extra feet of tubing around in case you add something or flushing new filters so their debris (especially the carbon) doesn't go to the membrane. You just take a piece of tubing and plug it into the output of the carbon block (that goes TO the membrane) and run water through the sediment and carbon blocks straight into a bucket, or a drain.
     
  4. fishbox

    fishbox Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2015
    Messages:
    549
    Likes Received:
    257
    @ Forsaken77

    I actually fill my washer up with the waste water. I only hold it for the minute or two that I flush. I did watch the BRS video and think I've got it packed pretty tight now. However I think I'll try the silica Buster in the future. My unit does have the restrictor that allows Flushing. Again I use this for a minute before and after each use. But please help me understand this 3 Way ball valve. Are you saying that with my current flushing kit the High TDS water goes through the DI resin and that the three-way ball valve will prevent that by switching the valve to bypass the DI? I'm also having a difficult time envisioning what you're talking about with the pins on my two-way inline meter. But I guess I'll just have to get in there and take a look at it and hope it makes sense then LOL
     
    Forsaken77 likes this.
  5. fishbox

    fishbox Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2015
    Messages:
    549
    Likes Received:
    257
    How long do you do this for? And can I just use one of those 3-way valves here for this as well?
     
  6. Forsaken77

    Forsaken77 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2016
    Messages:
    824
    Likes Received:
    405
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    Do what, flush out the sediment and carbon blocks? You do it when they're new or replaced. But yes, one of those 3 way valves would make it easier so you didn't have to diconnect the tubing and reconnect it. I was just trying to save you another $20 on another valve. You really only need to do it with the carbon, but I always replace both at the same time because those sediment filters last a while and hold a ton of crap before needing replacing. I usually fill half of a 5 gallon bucket rinsing it out, or run it a few minutes into the drain.

    It's funny because when I was typing about rinsing the carbon blocks I was thinking that the valve would be good there. I just have an extra piece of hose, because it's cheap, that I connect instead of spending another $20 on the valve. It's very well made and should last forever. That's why it costs a lot. Anywhere you want to put that valve, you just snip the existing tubing and connect the input to the bottom and the other end of the snipped hose to one of the sides. Then just add another line for whatever you need. But the valve isn't necessary to rinse the carbon, it's just easier. But definitely use it to flush the system because the DI resin goes fast and is the most expensive, aside of the membrane.
     
    fishbox likes this.
  7. Forsaken77

    Forsaken77 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2016
    Messages:
    824
    Likes Received:
    405
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    That restrictor is just a pressure device. So when it's open to flush, it's allowing the water to run full throttle through the system. When that happens, most of the water goes around the membrane and not through it, going out the waste water line and some through the product water line. The higher your water pressure, the more flush water will go through the product line. And you have good pressure. When it's closed, it pressurizes and forces more water through the membrane.

    Unless you have a regular ball valve attached to just close off the DI canister, then the high tds water that's been sitting in the system goes through it through the product water line when flushing. But even if you do have that ball valve, because I did, some high tds water will be sitting in the hosing waiting for you to open the DI back up. That 3-way valve makes it so the high tds water that would come through the product line, instead will divert to a second waste water line, and then you converge them with that other piece I showed you. So when you run water through, in flush mode, both the product and waste will be going into the drain until you see the monitor show the tds lowering. Then you flick the lever to switch it back to normal so the product goes to your can and close the restrictor. You can read some of the reviews on the 3-way and others do it the same way. It's the best way to get all the crappy water out of the system without any lingering.

    If you converge the 2 lines into 1 waste line, I would put a check valve (they're very cheap) on each waste line before they converge so one side can't push water up the other, because a lot more water will be flowing out the waste line. You probably already have a check valve on there somewhere already. I don't know how BRS makes their systems, I built my own by ordering the parts separately.
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2017
    fishbox likes this.
  8. fishbox

    fishbox Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2015
    Messages:
    549
    Likes Received:
    257
    New update:

    Pulled the line running out of the RO membrane off the DI cartridge and tested with my handheld meter and got 30 TDS. That's only +3 compared to the 27 from the inline meter. So I doubt anything is wrong with the inline meter. I did pull out the pins on the input of the in line meter to verify placement. If I'm understanding @Forsaken77 the pins should be perpendicular and not parallel with the water flow and they are perpendicular.
    I also took apart the RO membrane for a second time to verify it was set correctly and that the O-rings were okay and this all looks good to me. Then I pulled out my instructions and compared my lines going in and out of the RO membrane against the pictures in the instructions and my lines seem to be matched up correctly. And I put everything back together flushed it for a minute. The TDS started at 126 and ended at 30 on the inline meter. Then I shut off the flush valve and it dropped back down to 27 on the input and still zero after the DI. So I'm still at Square One with high TDS after my RO and a very low rejection rate and not a clue
     
    rkpetersen likes this.
  9. Forsaken77

    Forsaken77 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2016
    Messages:
    824
    Likes Received:
    405
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    Oh yeah, the pins. Those 2 probes for your inline tds monitor have 2 pins inside each one. If you disconnect the tubing and look inside where the tubing connects to the probe, you'll see 2 pins sticking down. The water has to flow between them. So just make sure they're oriented properly or you won't get an accurate reading.
     
  10. Forsaken77

    Forsaken77 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2016
    Messages:
    824
    Likes Received:
    405
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    Did you check your source water, from the tap there, with your handheld to see the incoming tds?
     
  11. fishbox

    fishbox Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2015
    Messages:
    549
    Likes Received:
    257
    Yeah... I'm getting 172 on my tap water. 27 after the RO, and 0 after the DI. I can't think of anything else to check.
     
  12. rkpetersen

    rkpetersen Well-Known Member Partner Member 2018

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2017
    Messages:
    293
    Likes Received:
    201
    Location:
    Seattle
    You've done a good job of troubleshooting it; the membrane's bad.
     
  13. fishbox

    fishbox Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2015
    Messages:
    549
    Likes Received:
    257
    Yeah I'm thinking that's the bottom line which is really upsetting to me. This unit is only 8mos old and has only been in use for 7mos. I've been getting that 27tds after the RO membrane since day one. Unfortunately, I was under the impression that the "in" reading on my inline meter was my tap water tds. @Zack@BRS you guys should help a brother out on this one
     
    Gmj4409 likes this.
  14. Dwight

    Dwight New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2017
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    New Jersey
    What is TDS acc how do you test for it please?
     
  15. fishbox

    fishbox Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2015
    Messages:
    549
    Likes Received:
    257
    It's a measurement of total dissolved solvents in our water. When keeping Reef aquariums water quality is key and it is important to try to keep this number as low as possible. It's one of the reasons why we do not use tap water and use our Rodi filters. The two main ways we reefers test for TDS is with a handheld meter or an inline meter attached to Rodi units
     
  16. fishbox

    fishbox Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2015
    Messages:
    549
    Likes Received:
    257
  17. Zack@BRS

    Zack@BRS Active Member R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2017
    Messages:
    28
    Likes Received:
    41
    @fishbox

    That definitely is disappointing to hear, but I think after all of the steps we've taken to troubleshoot, that does sound like the most likely issue. It's very rare to get a defective membrane, but not impossible. Thankfully we are happy to stand behind our products and would be more than happy to get this taken care of. If you wouldn't mind pm'ing me, we can get on this right away for you.
     
    Brew12, cmcoker and rkpetersen like this.
  18. fishbox

    fishbox Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2015
    Messages:
    549
    Likes Received:
    257
    @Zack@BRS and to anyone reading.

    Although disappointing, I'm fully aware that receiving a bad membrane from BRS is a highly unlikely event. I also know that BRS is at the top of the game for a reason. I have 100% confidence that BRS will help me out with this. I learned a ton of stuff from this issue and wanna thank everyone who helped!

    Zack I sent you a PM buddy
     
    Brew12 and cmcoker like this.
  19. fishcrf450r

    fishcrf450r Well-Known Member CTARS Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2014
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    18
    Location:
    Enfield ct.
    Way to go brs .
    Great customer support .....
     
    cmcoker and fishbox like this.
  20. fishbox

    fishbox Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2015
    Messages:
    549
    Likes Received:
    257
    Yes! BRS stepped up for me on this one. Within 30min of me sending the PM to Zack, I received notification that my new membrane was being shipped out. They even gave me the 1 to 3 day shipping. All I was hoping for was a discount on a new membrane but they took care of everything at no cost to me. Once again this proves why they are at the top of their game
     
    Forsaken77 and cmcoker like this.
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page

Loading...