Re:TDS meter reading help need please

Pete Giwojna

Dear pinkpony:

That sounds like a fine system you are planning and it’s absolutely the best approach to do as much research and planning as possible before you take the big plunge. Monitoring the total dissolved solids in the incoming water and outgoing water is a good way to monitor your RO unit and determine whether the filters need changing.

I’m not sure how your TDS monitor is calibrated, so I can’t say if the reading of 17.2 is indicating just over 17 ppm or 172 ppm, but if there is not a significant difference between the incoming and outgoing water, then something is definitely wrong. A simple way to doublecheck would be to test the water hardness of both the incoming and outgoing water. As you know, if the RO unit is worth its salt, it should be yielding very soft water.

With a three stage RO filter like yours, the water should be passing through the sediment and carbon first and the membrane last of all. This is to assure that any particulates or chlorine in the incoming water are removed before they can cause the membrane to deteriorate, become clogged, or break down prematurely.

If you confirm that the RO unit is not working properly, I would contact the manufacturer so they can help you troubleshoot the problem and figure out where things are going awry. You might also check out the site at, which has a lot of good information on what to look for in an RO/DI system.

I’m sorry I can’t be more helpful regarding the connections and how all of your equipment is plumbed, but there are a whole lot of systems out there and a lot of different monitors, so you’ll need to check the installation instructions or contact the manufacturers for further assistance.

Best of luck getting your RO unit and TDS monitor functioning smoothly, pinkpony.

Pete Giwojna

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