I recently bought the Aqua FX Barracuda 4 stage 100 gpd R/O-DI
for my water changes & a Aqua-Safe Canada 5 stage 100 gpd R/O only drinking unit for my kitchen. IMO
, the Aqua FX is superior to the Aqua-Safe, but the Aqua-Safe is cheaper in initial cost & cartridge replacements.
The Aqua FX is a DI
unit so I'm not comparing the DI
replacements. This unit has the clear canisters vs the solid white canisters in the Aqua-Safe. You can visually see the sediment cartridge turn brown & you of course need to see the DI
cartridge exhaust. Even though I don't have the 6 stage Aqua-Safe Reef unit, it didn't look like the DI
canister was clear so I guess you would need to test for phosphates to see if the DI
Aqua Fx uses a Dow membrane & Aqua-Safe uses another company that uses Dow material.
I have the Aqua-Fx pierced clamped to my cold water & the discharge drilled & saddle clamped to the drain pipe. No problems or leaks here. For my fishes, I just opted for a garden hose attachment. Since this was in the slop sink area, it was a very easy install, not the 5 hrs for the kitchen unit. I just bought a good brass y garden hose connector (don't use the plastic ones) and split the cold water washing machine connection. The unit is mounted about 18" above the sink, so the discharge tube is just placed in the slop sink with a soap holder dingy that holds it in place.
As for TDS
, initially I thought the Aqua Fx was better, (just R/O output without DI
) but it really goes by the incoming TDS
. I realized that when I tested the Aqua-Safe, the incoming TDS
was @ 111 ppm
, with an output of 27 ppm
. Then when the TDS
dropped to 71, it gave me an output of 11 ppm
. When I tested the Aqua Fx after the initial flushing of the membrane without the DI
attached, I had incoming water with a TDS
of 54 ppm
and an output of TDS
with 1 ppm
What I did like about the Aqua-Safe vs the Aqua Fx is that they had an easy membrane flush valve/flow restrictor attached to the unit. Very easy to use where as the Aqua Fx uses an inline capacitor type flow restrictor for proper back pressure. If you read up on R/O units, flushing the membrane at least once a month or after a large make up of water is important to extend the membrane life. With the Aqua Fx, you cannot do this unless you buy the option for $19.99.
I also don't like the inline type of DI
units vs the clear canister cartridge type. With the inline you also need to unscrew the quick disconnect fittings each time you need to change the DI
Sorry for the long post, just my $.02