DWC vs rDWC Hydroponics



As we talk about hydroponics, it is impossible to not talk about the Deep Water Culture and recirculating DWC. This article will show you the difference between DWC vs rDWC Hydroponics. In DWC, plants are put in a solution full of nutrients and water. The roots are submerged deep into the water, leading to the name DWC.

In the alternate systems, the roots are kept in the air, and water is given at a particular time. But in DWC, all the roots are kept in water 24/7.


DWC vs rDWC Hydroponics

One major issue with the DWC hydroponics farming is that continuous exposure of roots to the water can lead to a rotten root quickly. For this reason, the importance of aeration in DWC (rDWC) increases. Aeration is the process of providing enough oxygen to the plants so that they survive the extra water in their surroundings. But with techniques like the air bubble method and falling water method, it becomes pretty easy to manage the excess water.

Interesting fact about DWC: Researchers consider DWC as Hydroponics in its purest form. Infact, it is also the easiest and most effective of all the systems.

Setting up rDWC farming

Setting up an rDWC system is easy. You require:

  • A 5 Gallon Bucket
  • Air pump
  • Airstone
  • Air tubing
  • Growing medium
  • Hydroponics nutrients
  • Net
  • pH Control Kit
  • PPM Meter

Steps to follow


Do you know why do we need to add pH controller to the buckets? If not well regulated, the wrong pH can spoil the whole plant. Therefore, not adding a pH controller is a big no.  The pH should be between 5.5 to 6.0. to support plant growth.

Once you have set up your DWC plants, they’ll start growing rapidly. This system is best for short-term, non-fruiting plants. But what if you want to scale up your plants?

The traditional way of DWC farming is not the best way to do it. To ensure the growth of plants at a higher rate and to prevent them from rotting, use Recirculating DWC or rDWC.

rDWC System

Human Interest

In DWC, you have to utilize one bucket for every plant you grow. Then you have to manage and calibrate the oxygen, nutrients, and water in each of the buckets. It can be a tedious task to manage consistently. To set you free from all these hassles, rDWC was invented.

rDWC is a system of multiple buckets that can help you manage all the plants simultaneously. The system has a group of buckets that are connected through pipes to a large central bucket or reservoir.

Interesting Fact: In rDWC, each of the buckets can hold 2-3 more small plants or one large plant than in the DWC system.

The central bucket, or reservoir, is used to transfer all the nutrients to every plant present in the system. You can also pump air through the central bucket. You will find that this system is efficient as it saves a lot of resources from getting wasted and supplies the nutrients to the plants as per their need. rDWC is a great boon for nature lovers who want to grow more plants with hydroponics farming.

Which plants to grow?

Every system works best on certain types of plants. You will find that for DWC, the best plants are those which do not have flowers in them. All kinds of grass, herbs, and lettuce can grow fresh and healthy in this system. You can also grow tomatoes and pepper but you might have to be extra careful in case of fruiting plants. In rDWC you can grow large or flowering/fruiting plants like hemp.

Why choose recycling Deep Water Culture hydroponics farming?

  1. There are not too many parts to take care of. This reduces the maintenance cost and time. As the set-up has a pipe and a bucket as major components, you can always fix minor issues by yourself.
  2. The growth of plants is exponential and healthier than conventional growth. Due to no competition and direct transfer of nutrients, plants grow better.
  3. As the plants are deep inside the water, you will not have to add fertilizer to each bucket as the nutrients are already dissolved in the water. This is why rDWC saves you both money and time.

You have many options for DWC and rDWC.  Let me show you a few.

Type of System



Star Rating

Check Pricing


Hydrofarm RS5GALSYS Root Spa Deep Water Culture Bucket System, 5 Gallon, black


HTGSupply 5-Gallon Bubble Boy 4 Banger Deep Water Culture (DWC) Hydroponic Bucket System


Root Box Hydroponics Grow 2 System Current Recirculating Deep Water Culture RDWC


Bavnnro Dwc Hydroponic System,Multi Barrel Hydroponic Machine,Drip Irrigation Hydroponic System(4 Bucket + Reservoir Kit)


You can now fearlessly opt for DWC farming and see your plants grow like magic. Once you get the hang of DWC in the conventional method, switching to rDWC is going to help you get better yields. So contact a hydroponics farm set-up expert today to get started on your journey to futuristic farming!

Find out more here:  Deep Water Culture Systems

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Darlene Thompson

After having lived in Canada's most northerly territory of Nunavut where outdoor gardening is nigh impossible, I started down my adventure of indoor gardening. I hope you find the various methods as exciting as I do!

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