“Bottled Water TDS” – What it means – Why it matters

In the few minutes it takes you to read this article, you will learn learn what  bottled water TDS means
(and why you should care.)

"Bottled water is bad for the environment.”  

“Bottled water is no better than / the same as / worse than tap water.”

"Bottled water is a total rip-off"

You’ve heard this type of thing over and over for years now.  And yet you drink those bottles.  You kind of think you shouldn’t, or at least wish you knew what the fuss is about, but what are you going to do?  

Hey, I get it.  Who’s got time to be a scientist, after all?  Who are you going to believe?

Well, this post won’t tell the whole story (there really is science to the complete answer), but I am going to give you a very easy way to get a really big clue.

On many water bottles you buy off the shelf, there is a list of ingredients.  Part of that list, somewhere on that label, you may find some letters  you may recognize but never (before today) understood: PPM and TDS.  Have you ever seen them before?  Do you have a bottle handy?  Check… it may well be on there somewhere.

Bottled Water TDS 2

Take a look at the image above.  See that "Total Dissolved Solids <35ppm"?

This bottle has written out the TDS.  "Total Dissolved Solids"  The other part, the PPM? That stands for Parts Per Million.

This tells you how much ‘other stuff’ is in that bottle. It is a numerical value indicating the purity of the water.  The lower that value, the purer the water.  What it says is that for every million molecules in that bottle, less than (<) 35 are not water.  

Now, let’s be clear here.  It isn’t saying that there are <35 parts of toxic wastes.  Nor is it saying that there are <35 parts of elixir of permanent youth.  It says nothing at all about what that bottled water TDS is… just that it is there.  We'll cover the 'what' in a typical bottle in another post.

Note: not all bottlers publish the value as “TDS”. Maybe they know we’re getting wise to them, and change it up.
Above is an example. Notice how it refers to Mineral Salt Content 552 PPM?  That is actually saying the same thing as 552  PPM TDS.  Bear that in mind: changing the terminology doesn’t change the reality. Different words.  Same facts.

And yes... that bottle is actually advertising 552 parts per million that aren't water.  Not nearly pure!

So, if TDS doesn’t tell you the what, does it actually have any use?

It certainly does.

You are buying bottled water because it is better than tap water, right?  But, assuming you are interested in the purity of your water (which is why most folks drink bottled water)… why not drink it actually pure?  

The fact is, if you have a bottled water TDS of 2 PPM, that water is, by definition, purer and cleaner than water with a TDS of  200, regardless of what that TDS is made of. Stay tuned for further posts, which will talk about exactly that. (Spoiler alert: those ‘good’ minerals everyone says you need in your water?  Kinda/sorta/maybe, but not really, for a few good reasons.) 

OK, so now that you know what TDS is, do you think it might make a difference going forward when you select a bottled water to drink?  I hope it does!

Obviously, we here at H2Only want you to know about our water!

H2Only uses a multi-stage filtration process with reverse-osmosis technology at its core.  The result?  Water at 2 PPM TDS… and look at that! Now you know what that means!  If you read that and thought “Very pure water!”, you get a gold star! That’s exactly what it means.  H2Only produces very purified, very clean water.

Since you went through all the trouble of learning what bottled water TDS means, it seems only fair that we give you the opportunity to try some water with a really low TDS value, right?  So that’s what we are going to do.

We'd like you to try us out for a month.  Free.  No obligation.  Just tell us how to get in touch with you below, and we'll get back to you to set up a delivery so you can sample bottled water at 2 PPM TDS!
(... and isn't it cool that you know what that means now!)
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We hope you enjoyed reading this post, which is part of an an ongoing series focused on water quality.  If the subject interests you, please fill out the Stay Informed form below and we will add you to our mailing list.  We send out an update email every other Tuesday morning… we won’t be burying your inbox!

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