Why Purified water should be your top choice for hydroponics

When it comes to hydroponics or gardening in general, you must consider all of the various inputs that your plants require to thrive. Water may appear to be the easiest to secure these, as it is readily available in our houses.

But things aren’t as straightforward as that. It all depends on where you acquire your water, and finding excellent quality water these days is difficult enough.

The quality of the nutrient solution determines the success and full development of plants in hydroponics. However, because the plant obtains all of its nutrients from the nutrient solution, some caution should be exercised in maintaining the nutrient solution’s quality.

Hydroponics Benefits of Purified Water.

There are numerous advantages to utilizing distilled water in hydroponics. First, by starting with distilled water, plants are only exposed to the nutrients that the grower has provided, rather than pollutants, contaminants, or even minerals present in tap water. 

This means that toxins such as arsenic or lead prevalent in some water supplies, or chlorine applied to purify water, will not interfere with plant growth or be absorbed by the plant.

In addition, the pH of distilled water is neutral at 7, and it gives the grower peace of mind because it has no total dissolved solids.

Furthermore, the minerals in tap water cause scale building on equipment, rendering it useless or drastically reducing its lifespan.

The distillation process purifies the water by converting it to steam and then collecting the condensation, which removes all pollutants, heavy metals, microorganisms, and debris. As a consequence, you’ll have a colorless, odorless, tasteless, pH-neutral fluid that’s ideal for your plants. 

You can buy distilled water in bottles, but make sure it’s not spring or mineral water, which could have the same problems as well water. Alternatively, you can use a steam distiller to manufacture your own.

Many hydroponic growers, for example, recycle water. Thus magnesium, gypsum, and calcites, sometimes known as hard water, would pile up and clog pipes as they passed through the system. Hard water is not a friend of hydroponic growers. So purified water is preferred most often

Important criteria to check the nutrient solution quality.

The following are the most important aspects of nutrient solution quality:

Recommended solution temperature.

The recommended solution temperature for hydroponics plants is in the range of 18 ° C to 24 ° C in the summer and 10 ° C to 16 ° C in the winter. Temperatures far above or below these limitations harm the plant because excessive temperatures make it difficult to absorb nutrients.

Oxygen level in the solution.

In hydroponics, it’s critical to keep the nutrient solution oxygenated in order for the roots to absorb nutrients. The nutritional solution can be oxygenated either during the circulation of the solution in return to the reservoir or by using compressed air or oxygen.

Maintaining a steady supply of oxygen in your hydroponic system is critical. You should make sure that your hydroponic system is suitable for the plant you wish to grow and always provide the optimum amount of oxygenation.

Why proper oxygen levels are needed in Deepwater culture.

Because the roots are submerged in a Deep Water Culture hydroponic system, proper oxygen levels are critical. Therefore, it is advised that 1 liter of air being pumped into each gallon of fertilizer solution for maximum growth. For maximal oxygenation, a 100-gallon reservoir would require a 100 LPM air pump.

In any other hydroponic application, all that is required is to keep the solution sufficiently oxygenated to keep it from turning anaerobic. 

This means that a lot less air is needed. In general, if the solution has good circulation and the bulk of the surface is fractured with bubbles, you should be alright. A DWC system with an oxygenation rate of 14–12 should be more than enough.

How adding extra aeration can be harmful.

Because the bubbles from the air stone or diffuser create friction, it is possible to have too much aeration. The more friction there is, the more heat is generated. Adding extra aeration can thus be harmful in some situations.

The amount of oxygen that water can hold is also affected by its temperature. Therefore, reservoir temperatures that are too high will prohibit adequate oxygen saturation levels. As a result, the temperature in your nutrition reservoir should not surpass 68 degrees Fahrenheit.

Tips to check for aeration.

  • In static systems, you should always check the frequency and quantity of aerators, and in dynamic settings, you should always check the drainage and irrigation frequency of the cultivation media. 
  • After considering all of this, you’ll notice that paying strict attention to oxygenation will solve a lot of your problems, resulting in a much healthier and productive hydroponic crop.
  • While measuring dissolved oxygen levels in a hydroponic nutrient solution is possible, it is rarely done as frequently as EC/ppm or pH monitoring due to the high expense of good DO meters.
  • However, suppose an effective form of aeration is employed on a regular basis, and solution temperatures are kept below a certain threshold. In that case, good levels of oxygenation can be produced without difficulty.
  • Because of the high surface tension of water, most growers are aware of the requirement for aeration in their nutrient solution, whether they are using a recirculating water-based or media-based system. 

Effect of the solution’s temperature on DO levels.

However, the effect of the solution’s temperature on DO levels and root respiration rates must also be considered. The ability of your nutrition solution to hold DO reduces as the temperature of the solution rises.

At 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius), the oxygen content of a completely aerated solution is around 13 parts per million (ppm), but when the solution warms to 68 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius), the liquid’s ability to contain oxygen declines to 9-10 ppm.

It’s just seven ppm by the time the solution reaches 86 F (30 C). While this may not appear to be a significant decrease in DO, we must remember that as the temperature of the root system warms, the rate of root tissue respiration increases, and the plant requires more oxygen. 

The root respiration rate doubles for every 10 degrees Celsius increase in temperature up to 86 degrees Fahrenheit (30 C).

So, suppose the solution temperature rises from 68 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit (20 to 30 degrees Celsius) during the day with a mature crop. In that case, the demand for oxygen will double while the oxygen-carrying capacity of the solution will decline by 25%. 

This means that the DO in solution will be depleted considerably more quickly, and plants will suffer from oxygen deficiency (root rot) for a longer period of time.

Electrical Conductivity.

This is a critical control since it influences how much fertilizer is present in the solution (quantity of ions). The electrical conductivity increases as the number of ions in the solution increases and vice versa.

A conductivity meter is a gadget that measures conductivity. The optimal solution measures 1.5 to 3.5 milliSiemens/cm when using this equipment, which corresponds to 1,000 to 1,500 ppm total ion concentration in the solution

Values above this range are harmful to the plant, causing it to cease growing and potentially die. Lower readings suggest a lack of some element. However, which and in what quantity is unknown. Only a laboratory chemical study of the nutrition solution can provide the answer.

The nutrient solution’s pH.

However, whatever minerals are present in your water will make up a percentage of your plants’ feed. Most water is still fine, but in some circumstances, especially when a gardener wants complete control over the nutrients their plants consume, purified water may be the best option.

To create a full nutrient solution, it is frequently required to refill the calcium and magnesium levels in filtered water. All Homegrown locations sell Botanicare’s Cal-Mag supplement. 

Purified water’s pH is also difficult to maintain due to a lack of minerals to buffer the pH. Again, Cal-Mag will aid in the resolution of this problem.

In hydroponic horticulture, the pH of the nutrient solution is critical since plants cannot survive at pH levels below 3.5. Between pH 5.5 and 6.5, the plants reach their full potential. 

These parameters and others are subject to change during the development of plants in hydroponics. As a result, they should be closely monitored and addressed on a regular basis.

How to keep track of these variables

First, keep an eye on the nutritional solution’s level.

The plant consumes the solution, which results in a daily decrease in its volume in the solution tank. Therefore, every day, this volume should be replaced with pure water rather than the nutritional solution.

Because plants absorb far more water than nutrients, and because the nutrient solution is a saline solution, daily solution replenishment causes the medium to become salinized, to the point where the amount of dissolved salts exceeds the roots’ tolerance.

The plants will stop growing if this happens, not because of a shortage of nutrients but because of an extremely high osmotic potential in the root system.

Keep an eye on the nutrition solution’s pH.

The roots of the plants change the pH of the nutrient solution during the absorption process. Therefore, the pH of a nutritional solution indicates how acidic or basic it is.

The plants reach their full potential between pH 5.5 and 6.5, and as they grow, the pH of the nutritional solution changes. As a result, the pH of the solution must be measured every day after the volume of the solution has been filled with water. If it is not within this range of 5.5 to 6.5, it should be corrected with acid if it is above 6.5 and with alkali if it is below 5.5.

An instrument for determining the conductivity of a solution.

The plants are using the nutrients in the solution, and the solution is running out. Finally, it reaches a point where the solution is unable to give the nutrients required for plant growth.

One of the most difficult issues is determining when this trade should take place. The ability to conduct electric current exists in a solution containing salts (nutrients). The higher the concentration of salts dissolved in the solution, the greater the ability to conduct electric current. 

As a result, the drop in electrical conductivity can be used to determine when the nutritive solution has to be exchanged. Therefore, a conductivity meter is the easiest and simplest approach to determine the concentration of nutrients.

What apart from Purified water can be used?

Though purified water isn’t your only option, if you wish to proceed with these, then some careful steps and precautions must be taken.

Public utility.

If you live in a city or the suburbs, your water is most likely treated by a public utility to destroy microorganisms that cause illness in humans. Pure water has a pH of 7, but chlorine and other chemicals used to treat it alter it. 

Because the appropriate pH for your fertilizer solution is critical for your plants to absorb it effectively, you should test the water before using it and make any necessary adjustments.

Well water.

Underground wells are the most common source of water in rural areas. This is because minerals like calcium are common in well water and can change the pH as well. 

Before mixing up any nutrient solution, test the water to check that the pH is set correctly for your growing system and nutrient requirements.

 You may have observed a crusty white buildup around faucets and drains if your property uses well water with a high mineral concentration. 

These deposits might obstruct your plants’ growth and block tubes in your hydroponic system. But, again, filtering the water can assist in alleviating the issue.

Filtered water.

It doesn’t matter where your tap water originates from; if you filter it before using it, it will be better for your crops. From simple carbon-based filters to more complicated reverse-osmosis systems, there are a variety of options. 

The main distinction is one of convenience. Regardless of every method you use, the end result is essentially the same: pure water.


Rainwater is used to hydrate crops that are grown outside. Even if you grow under lights, you can collect rainwater in a plastic barrel tied to an outdoor downspout and use it to water your indoor plants. 

Rainwater is free of additives and has fewer minerals. However, it should not be collected from roofs with lead or asbestos-containing components. Even yet, unless you reside in a particularly rainy area, you are unlikely to receive enough precipitation to cover all of your watering requirements.

Water Distillers Outperform RO and Tap Water

Water distillers give pure water that is free of contaminants and microorganisms to plants. Chlorine, arsenic, and uranium are just a handful of contaminants found in tap water.

While reverse osmosis can filter tap water to a certain extent, it also generates a lot of wastewater. With a commercial water distillation system from Pure Water, you can save water, money and achieve better results.


1. What is the purpose of aerating hydroponics?

Aeration has also been demonstrated to increase plant development due to its effect on the roots in studies. Therefore, like the water in hydroponics, the air is a critical component that gardeners must never disregard.

2. Why is the aeration of roots so important?

Aeration loosens the soil, oxidizes it, and allows the roots to absorb the necessary nutrients and grow as quickly as possible. The soil is perforated with small holes by a lawn aerator, allowing air, water, and other nutrients to get deeper.

3. What is the best way to filter water for hydroponics?

If it’s chlorinated, let it out in the sun for at least 24 hours. Then, use a filter or Campden tablets if the water has been chlorinated. Consider filtering it or adding distilled or reverse osmosis water to dilute the concentration if it has a high PPM.

4. How often should the water in a hydroponic system be changed?

Every two weeks, or when the volume of supplied top-off water equals the tank’s total volume, the hydroponic solution should be completely changed out. This keeps nutrients, germs, and fungi from accumulating too much.

5. Why does an aeration tank raise pH levels?

To reduce stress on the microbial community and for optimal biological activity, the pH of the aeration tank should be between 6.5 and 8.5. Thus, the aeration tank can theoretically address an increase in influent organic loading as the biomass content in the tank grows.

6. What is the maximum amount of time that hydroponic plants can go without water?

Plants cultivated in sealed terrariums require the least amount of attention. They can go for years without drinking! Hydroponic water should be changed every two to three weeks as a general rule of thumb. To maintain ideal pH and nutrient levels, you may need to change it more or less frequently, depending on your system.

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