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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cost analysis
Here's a spreadsheet to use if you want to calculate your own costs and savings:

docs[dot]google[dot]com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AjB-zsihWt26dHhWLUZYclJWZU5xNV9vbmdPV1hBSmc&usp=sharing
Sorry I guess amazon doesnt allow links? replace [dot] with an actual dot.

If you've been buying your RO water, like I have (never have to vinegar-clean the coffee...
Published 11 months ago by S. Cook

versus
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Leaks like a sieve only worse
I bought this and the DI add on. First of all, the instructions were horrible. No instructions came with the DI add on or were on here so I had no clue where to hook it up or did it matter. Does it go prior to the intake? After the output? Who knows. The manufacturer offered no instructions on their site that I could find beyond what came with the unit...
Published 6 months ago by Paul Chinn


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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cost analysis, February 17, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Aquatic Life RO Buddie Three Stage Reverse Osmosis, 50-Gallon (Misc.)
Here's a spreadsheet to use if you want to calculate your own costs and savings:

docs[dot]google[dot]com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AjB-zsihWt26dHhWLUZYclJWZU5xNV9vbmdPV1hBSmc&usp=sharing
Sorry I guess amazon doesnt allow links? replace [dot] with an actual dot.

If you've been buying your RO water, like I have (never have to vinegar-clean the coffee machine!), here's my numbers:
RO water use: 15gal/week = 65gal/mo = 780gal/year
Store-bought RO water: $0.39/gal = $5.85/week = $25.35/mo = $304.20/yr

RO Buddie water, if 7:1 ratio: $0.046/gal = $0.69/week = $2.99/mo = $35.88/yr
RO Buddie water, if 4:1 ratio: $0.026/gal = $0.39/week = $1.69/mo = $20.28/yr

*Based on my local water cost: ~$4.92/ccf = $0.006582/gal
*1 ccf = 748gal
*Assuming roughly 7 gallons to produce 1 RO gallon (so the cost of an RO gallon is equal to the cost of 7 tap gallons).
*That's based on another user's review stating 6 to 1 ratio, allowing for extra. If you have better results (4 to 1, let's say) you could be looking at $0.026/gal of RO water :)
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best value, August 22, 2013
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Recieved the unit very promptly. I have tried other R/O units for aquariums and found this one to create softer water plus more water at a given amount of time. I will say that the unit had one leak but with elastic tape easily resolved.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great product that brought my water hardness to 0; this review includes a few installation tips and ideas on using waste water, July 18, 2014
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This review is from: Aquatic Life RO Buddie Three Stage Reverse Osmosis, 50-Gallon (Misc.)
This is a great, easy-to-use and easy-to-install RO unit. I bought the de-ionization chamber as well and have been happy with the results. I recommend this product to others.

I bought mine to reduce water hardness (it was far too high coming out of the tap), and it has brought hardness to zero in my tap water. My saltwater reef tank is doing very well, and I have seen an increase in activity among the fish and increased coral growth (xenias, clove, goniopora especially, various other SPS and LPS, etc.) despite having made no other changes. It was also cheaper for me to make my own RO/DI water than to buy water from my local fish store (more on that below).

The unit isn't perfect, but it works very well. The clips that hold the side chambers onto the center unit are a bit weak and the chambers sag downward when full of water. But, they stay on the main unit, so that isn't a big deal.

The unit also didn't explain how to remove the stoppers that come with the unit. The unit has a particular kind of tube seal that is not obvious: there are white baskets sitting in a hole, you push the basket down and shove the tubing into the hole, and then you pull the basket part up and clip a blue U-shaped clip on. That part was easy to figure out.

How to remove the stoppers that are in the basket when the unit arrives (and how to get the tubing back out of the basket) was not obvious. If you just pull and pull and pull on the stoppers, nothing will happen. If, however, you simply push the basket down and then, while holding it down, pull the stopper out, it's really easy to remove them. Same with tubing: push the basket down, pull up on the tubing, and voila, done.

The unit is also a great cost-saver. Buying water from the local fish store ranges from 25 cents to 50 cents per gallon. I can make my own water at about a 5 waste to 1 purified ratio for much less than that, even taking into account the cost of the unit, the cost of new membranes, and the cost of water/sewage (both purified and waste water). I collect the waste water in 5 gallon buckets and use them for watering plants, filling the pool, etc.

Overall, I'm happy with the unit. It makes about 50 gallons a day, just like it says, and the water quality is great. I have only been using mine for a few weeks (and had to replace the de-ionization chamber, see my review on that page), but I am otherwise happy, I recommend this to others.

One last word of warning: be sure that you don't put this somewhere that has high pressure. Or, if you do, make sure you buy tubing that can handle it. I put mine in the wrong place on a solar water heater and the pressure was too high: it blew a hole in the tubing I bought and leaked quite a bit. However, I just changed the tubing, reduced the pressure, and it has worked fine since.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great value and great quality, January 29, 2014
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i purchase it for my saltwater reef tank. The installation is easy and quality is excellent. the TDS of inflow water is 300 and the outflow is less than 10 TDS! the only complain is it provides a garden hose adapter instead of a home faucet adapter.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What a life saver!!!, January 10, 2014
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I have an indoor garden in my house and I was using my tap water for the longest time. My tap water would always change and was never consistent causing nutrient issues with my plants. I did some research on RO units and this one fit my bill because of its cheap price and ease of setup. I have it hooked up in my garage where my garden is and it also came with the attachment to hook it up to a hose faucet. This thing literally took me 20 minutes to set up and was getting 7ppm water after completed! My ppm's on my tap water would range from 250-350.

One thing to note is that you are going to have to buy extra tubing to run from your water source to the unit, Unit to waste drain, and unit to reservoir where you will be holding your clean RO water. Other than that it is an outstanding piece of equipment that has made my life so much easier.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great product, makes clean water, September 19, 2014
By 
T. Young (San Francisco, CA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Aquatic Life RO Buddie Three Stage Reverse Osmosis, 50-Gallon (Misc.)
Great product at a reasonable price. Having a 24G nano reef aquarium good clean water is essential to me. Tired of hauling buckets back and forth from LFS I invested in this product. Setting it up is very easy, just unclip a few of the 1/4 inch tubes, drop a cartridge in and reattach. I also purchased the DI cartridge at the same, it simply clips into the main cartridge container. The instructions on this are really lacking. Would recommend hitting youtube for some installation ideas and to see how the tubing works for the DI cartridge. They have tubing at your local big box hardware store, less than $5 and you're all set. Would also take a look at replacing the plastic hose connector with a brass one and getting a pressure checker. Water out of my tap was reading in at 420 TDS or so. The RODI water out of the unit was <1. Check your container if you're still getting higher TDS readings, had some residue in mine that was initially throwing it off above 100. Future plans for mine include mounting in permanently in the garage with a 50 gal drum and then running the waste water out to the garden. I'm currently making small batches in buckets and just hauling out the waste water to the garden.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This thing is amazing!!, January 1, 2015
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This review is from: Aquatic Life RO Buddie Three Stage Reverse Osmosis, 50-Gallon (Misc.)
This thing is amazing !!! Let me start by saying Ive been researching for months on the benefits of RO water. I've read reviews for dozens of systems only to end up convinced there a waste of money. Hundreds of dollars to buy, then set up and maintain. I settled for water from my local grocer, it was .37 at one and .43 at the other, provided you have your own jugs. They were both from the same company, provided local water that had been run through a seven (7) stage filter producing water at about 7ppm. Now that's pretty pure water ! My water is 138ppm out of the tap. A brita or pur fauset or pitcher filter never reduced the ppm. It always stayed the same. Found this on Amazon after a search for RO units, selling for less than 70.00$. I read the reviews, which seemed too good to be true. But decided to try it anyway. Glad I did. I took the included hose adapter to the hardware store and grabbed an adapter that would fit it to my fauset. Also grabbed about 50 feet of 1/4 food grade water line. Less than 8 bucks in parts. I attached the unit to the fauset and ran the waste from under the sink down to the basement then outside. I knew that there'd be significantly more waste then pure water produced. I checked all my fittings then turned the water on and first ran it without the membrane to flush the carbon. Then I installed the ro membrane and turned on the water. Ran it for about 10 minutes then checked the ppm on the output. The city water going in is at 138ppm. After going through this Awesome system the Clean water was 4ppm and the waste was 236ppm. (50 gal model by the way ) now to me this is great . This 3stage system, albeit new, was outperforming a 7stage commercial filter, filtering the exact same water that I am now with better results! This system is so nice I plan to add the refillable DI cartridge and make it a 4stage filter that will produce "high quality h20" at 0ppm. Also I'd like to add my water ratio is 1 pure gallon for every 3.5 gallons used. So for every 1 gallon you make you will waste 2.5 gallons. This is why I ran the waste line outside, to save on sewer costs since my water bill will be raised slightly. Even on the water bill though I believe I pay 2.55$ for around 750 gallons. Sewer rates are the same. So to get over 200 gallons of close to zero ppm water for under 5 bucks sounds pretty nice.

* forgot to mention due to the way water is mixed and stabilized by your supplier I find my waters ph to go in at 6.5 and come out at about 4.5. This is normal but you may want to add an alkalinity booster/ ph increase filter. There cheap and will bring the ph back closer to neutral (base)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Works great and simple to setup, June 24, 2014
By 
Scott A. Zacherau (Fairfax, VA United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Aquatic Life RO Buddie Three Stage Reverse Osmosis, 50-Gallon (Misc.)
This was easy to setup and for the first three weeks of ownership has been perfect. The only reason it does not have 5 stars is the fact you need to go buy 1/4 tube to complete the setup. Some length of tubing should have come with it. Attaching the tubing is a breeze once you understand the push pull insertion.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great all in one package RO system that I use for my Nano Reef, January 25, 2014
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This review is from: Aquatic Life RO Buddie Three Stage Reverse Osmosis, 50-Gallon (Misc.)
This is a very easy to set up product that seems to work very according to the inline TDS gauges that monitor the water quality.
I only give it 4 stars because the instructions are almost non-existent. If I was not familar with RO/DI systems in general I think this may have been more problematic for me.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The product does what it's supposed to and it's price is excellent. Would recommend for fish tanks., September 10, 2014
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So I bought this after reading the mixed reviews here. I needed RO water for my fish tank as our water here is very hard. After using this product, the water I collect is clean and soft! It works very well and delivers a GPH of around 5 (based on my measurement). It's loosing a star though because it is clunky-er than I'd like it to be but I'm using it outside and running a tube through the window (no mess!) so aesthetics aren't a big deal.

To respond to a few points other people raise:
Leaks: I bought teflon tape when I purchased this product. The only leak I encountered after 4 hours of use was from the RO filter housing. I put Teflon tape on the threading and BAM no more leak. I would assume any other leaks can be solved the same way if I get them.

Undoing the tubing: The product had instructions in it. Maybe an older model didn't but the one I received did. Worst case their website explains with pictures how to remove/secure the tubing.

Wastefulness: It does put off a good amount of waste water. I didn't measure it but it seems to flow 2-4 times faster than my clean outlet. I bought enough tubing to go with it that I can just put it in our garden and water some plants while I get my clean water. Alternatively if you do not have plants to water, it can go down the drain. Even with the waste, this is more cost effective than buying bottled or RO water.

Life of the filter: I've read a couple reviews talking about the filter not lasting very long. I will update this after more uses.

Because it's slow flowing, you will need either a holding tank or direct flow into what ever your application is. I have large home depot buckets and a 30 gallon storage tub that work great.
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Aquatic Life RO Buddie Three Stage Reverse Osmosis, 50-Gallon
$79.99 $63.39
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