what happens to their tank & fish over time as a result of not filtering out those hard metals from their water?
Well, you ask some pretty tough questions. IMO
, not much. Reg water changes will slow accumulation, use of GAC
will reduce quite a bit of it, and use of a protien skimmer will reduce even more. There is some speculation that metal and trace element build up is resposible for "Old Tank Syndrome" this is typically found in tanks that use a DSB
. If this is for a FO
tank, I wouldn't sweat it, the main reason most use RO
is because the metals and other minerals tend to be algae accelerators. I have run many a FO
tank for years using dechlorinated tap water, I do believe though that the use of RO
water is a better option and will help you maintain a cleaner, healthier tank. I use RO
water purchased from the machines in Walmart for .25 per gallon, I spot check it for phosphate and nitrate on a regular basis and haven't had a problem. Of course a RO
filter is a better choice in the long run, I just don't want to go to the expense right now.