Can You Use Distilled Water In A Fish Tank?

Can You Use Distilled Water In A Fish Tank?

Clean water should contain as few contaminants as possible for aquarium use, right?

It seems like a good idea to use distilled water for your aquarium since it is so pure and therefore, safer.

However, pure water molecules aren’t enough for fish.

Can you use distilled water in your fish tank if the water has been purified through distillation?

Do Distilled And Purified Water Even Have the Same Properties?

Distillation is the process of heating water, turning it into steam, and then cooling it down, so it becomes liquid again.

After the evaporation of impure water, all the dissolved solids are left behind.

As a result, all that is left is pure H2O.

All types of water have different TDS (Total Dissolved Solids), but distilled water has the lowest.

A liquid’s total dissolved solids are the ions, metals, minerals, and salts it contains.

PPM (parts per million) is the unit of measurement for TDS (total dissolved solids), and TDS will decrease to 0 after high-quality distillation.

Can Aquariums Be Filled With Distilled Water?

The following circumstances justify the use of distilled water in a fish tank:

If you want to change the water in your aquarium, do not use distilled water alone.

It’s good to top off an aquarium that’s losing water to evaporation with pure distilled water.

The TDS (Total Dissolved Solids) of this kind of water is zero, making it the softest water available. 

Fish are harmed by water with no TDS since it attempts to suck out minerals from their bodies through an effect called osmotic pressure.

The hardness of tap water used in fish tanks can also be reduced by using distilled water.

In any case, this type of water has virtually no minerals in it, making it harmful to aquatic life.

In addition to serving as a buffer for pH, minerals are also important for fish and plants.

Nevertheless, distilled water is one of the best options for maintaining a healthy aquarium when it is properly remineralized.

It should be noted, however, that using pure distilled water in small tanks and bowls can be fatal, since it will significantly lower the pH level.

It’s time to elaborate a little on that.

When Should You NOT Use Distilled Water In Your Fish Tank?

When Should You NOT Use Distilled Water In Your Fish Tank?

If you are changing the water in your fish tank, do not use distilled water.

Distilled water lacks minerals, which is why it should never be used.

The sea is full of minerals that fish and plants alike utilize, while humans rely on food for all their nutritional needs.

Additionally, minerals regulate and stabilize pH levels in water.

A pH swing of even a few pH units can be lethal to fish.

The pH of distilled water is approximately 7, making it slightly acidic.

Nevertheless, without stabilization, this number will be extremely unstable since almost every factor that can affect it will cause violent fluctuations.

A couple of hours after the distillation, even carbon absorbed from the air will lower the pH of this water.

A second reason why using pure distilled water for your aquarium is a bad idea is that it impacts the fish’s nervous system.

The nervous system of many animals transmits signals via charged particles (ions) from salts.

The salts in the fish’s body and bloodstream will dissolve in distilled or purified water, severely damaging its nervous system.

It affects all fish species, whether they are goldfish, betta fish, or anything else.

Is Distilled Water Safe To Use In Aquariums?

Your fish tank can benefit from distilled water for the following purposes:

  • Water lost as a result of evaporation. Purified distilled water can be used to top off your fish tank because you don’t disrupt its mineral balance in this manner. As water evaporates, it leaves behind no minerals. Your aquarium would be a better home for these minerals.
  • After remineralization, water changes. Your fish can only drink distilled water if you do it this way. As long as you remineralize it properly, you can replace tap water with it.

    In addition to adding back the good minerals, you should also stay away from everything harmful in tap water. The best water to use in your aquarium is remineralized distilled water.
  • Hard water can be softened with a softener. If you mix a gallon of tap water with a gH of 20 with a gallon of distilled water, the resulting water will have a gH of 10. You should not use it to proportionally lower your tap water’s pH, however.

    Remember, the pH scale changes based on the logarithm. The pH value of your final product will not be halved if you mix 1 gallon of tap water with a gallon of distilled water. You will need to test for yourself here.

    In addition to carbon hardness (kH), alkalinity must be taken into account. The pH level will not fluctuate violently with these levels and may even remain the same. By diluting tap water with distilled water, a pH of 3 and hardness of halved will result.

Final Thoughts

If you were previously unsure if you could use distilled water in a fish tank, then this article should have answered your questions.

It is important to remember that using distilled water will depend on the condition of your tank, and the way you use the distilled water to not inflict any sort of damage.

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