Reverse Osmosis (RO)

What Is Reverse Osmosis and How It Works;

In short, it is the process by which water molecules are forced by pressure through a 0.0001-micron semi-permeable membrane by water pressure to force the water passing through the membrane, separating it from unwanted substances. The most amazing aspect of RO is that the substances left behind are automatically diverted to a waste drain so they don't build up in the system as with conventional filtering devices. This is accomplished by using a part of the unprocessed water (feed water) to carry away the rejected substances to the drain, thus keeping the membrane clean.

A reverse osmosis membrane reduces chemical quantities and most pollutants, including heavy metals like lead, fluoride, chromium, and arsenic. In addition, a reverse osmosis membrane will also remove nuclear radiation like plutonium as well as microbial contaminants such as bacteria and viruses.

Choosing an RO system; Homeowners who are thinking about buying a reverse osmosis system should determine their initial water quality and their goals in adding a water treatment system. The answers to the following questions will help homeowners choose an RO system.

 What is the quality of your drinking water?

Have your water tested by a laboratory to determine which contaminants, if any, are present and which water treatment system is best suited to your situation.

 What type and concentration of contaminants do you expect the RO system to remove?

When considering the purchase of RO equipment, ask what the contaminant passage and rejection rates are for that system under typical home water conditions. Ask for the rejection rates for each specific health-related contaminant of concern to you and your family as- well as for TDS rejection rates.

 How much treated water is needed in the home?

The volume of treated water that can be produced is determined by the water pressure and the size of the holding tank, as well as the membrane capacity.

 What is the installation, operation, and maintenance costs of an RO system?

The price of buying and installing an RO system depending on the features of the system and the water quality and quantity needed. The costs of maintaining an RO system include monitoring the product water, periodically replacing membranes and filters (pre- and post-treatment), and disinfecting and servicing the system.

Note the following when you decide to buy RO System

  • RO removes many inorganic impurities from drinking water. Its effectiveness depends not only on the type of membrane but on feed water. quality, temperature, pressure, and flow control, as well as the type and concentration of specific contaminants to be removed.
  • RO is not effective for removing dissolved gases, some pesticides and solvents, hydrogen sulfide gas, THMS, VOCs, and chloramines (All this should be removed by Activated Carbon)
  • A typical RO system consists of a sediment filter, Activated carbon filters for dichlorination, pump, reverse osmosis membrane, flow regulator, storage tank, final activated carbon filter (for taste and odors), and dispensing faucet.
  • RO is commonly used to treat only the water used for drinking and cooking at the point of use rather than at the point of entry for all household use.
  • RO membrane types vary in their ability to reject contaminants and differ in capacity (the volume of treated water produced per day).
  • Maintenance of an RO system is essential for reliable performance. High levels of TDS and microorganisms in the system are commonly the cause of fouled membranes.
  • The treated water should be monitored for TDS and the level of any specific contaminants that may affect your family’s health.