TDS stands for Total Dissolved Solids In Water. "Dissolved solids"
refer to any minerals, salts, metals, cations or anions dissolved in
water. This includes anything present in water other than the pure water
(H20) molecule and suspended solids. (Suspended solids are any
particles/substances that are neither dissolved nor settled in the
water, such as wood pulp.)
In general, the total dissolved solids concentration is the sum of
the cations (positively charged) and anions (negatively charged) ions in
the water. This actually is a conductivity test of available ions in
the water, including Ca2+, Na+, K+, Fe2+, Fe3+, HCO3- and ions
containing P, S & N. High levels of Na+ is associated with excessive
salinity and is found in many minerals. Potassium is incorporated into
plant material and is released into water systems when plant matter is
decayed or burnt.
Now that we know what TDS is, let's talk about from where Dissolved
Solids come from. Some dissolved solids come from organic sources such
as leaves, silt, plankton, and industrial waste and sewage. Other
sources come from runoff from urban areas, road salts used on street
during the winter, and fertilizers and pesticides used on lawns and
farms. Dissolved solids also come from inorganic materials such as rocks
and air that may contain calcium bicarbonate, nitrogen, iron
phosphorous, sulfur, and other minerals. Many of these materials form
salts, which are compounds that contain both a metal and a nonmetal.
Salts usually dissolve in water forming ions. Water may also pick up
metals such as lead or copper as they travel through pipes used to
distribute water to consumers.
If you have installed a water filter or a Reverse Osmosis (RO) system
or have yet to install, the only way to know if your reverse osmosis RO
membrane is performing correctly is TDS. It's a must for all RO system
owners. You can compare incoming feed water to treated water. Replace
membrane/filter if less than 80% of TDS is being removed. The lower the
TDS level in the water, the more efficiently your body's cells actually
get hydrated by the water that you drink. The higher the TDS levels in
the water, the greater the probability of harmful contaminants that can
pose health risks or hinder the absorption of water molecules on the
cellular level. 17 PPM of TDS = 1 grain of hardness. Anyone who wants to
know about the quality of their water and its hardness, should have one
of these TDS Meter Testers. The TDS meter is an excellent means by
which you can regularly test your water supply, as well as your water
purification system and its performance in cleaning your water. If you
notice the TDS level beginning to show an increase in your reverse
osmosis or other water purification system, then it is time to change
the filters or cartridges.
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