A reverse osmosis filtration system is an excellent option if you want clean and fresh drinking water for your home. The RO system is misunderstood by many people but it works on simple principles and no chemicals are added to the water. Like any system, the RO filtration system will require a little regular maintenance. Let’s take a closer look at how the system works to help you make an informed choice for your home.

What is Reverse Osmosis?

This is a purely mechanical way to remove contaminants from your incoming water supply. The municipal water treatment plant removes contaminants to a basic level but breaks in the water delivery network can cause contamination. The plant will also add chlorine or chloramine (ammonia and chlorine) as a disinfectant and many people dislike these chemicals. The RO filtration system consists of a semi-permeable membrane that only allows water molecules to pass through the tiny pores. The water is forced through the membrane under pressure and the contaminants are left behind on the surface. Periodically, these contaminants are washed away into the drain to leave the surface clean for continued and efficient filtration.

What is Removed from the Water?

The RO system can remove up to 99% of contaminants from your water supply. Including microorganisms, heavy metals, TDS, chemicals, pesticides, PFAS, and more. This process takes some time and it isn’t a true on-demand system. The filtered water is stored in a tank under the sink and the drinking water is piped to a dedicated faucet. Most people decant this drinking water into a jug for easy storage in the refrigerator. Making beverages and cooking with RO water really allows the intended taste to shine through and many people are surprised at the difference it makes.

How Does the RO System Work?

There are five main stages in a RO filtration system, they are:

  1. The Sediment Filter: This pre filter removes any larger particles that could damage the surface of the membrane.
  2. Carbon Pre Filter: This stage removes any chlorine or chloramine in the water that could burn a hole in the membrane.
  3. Reverse Osmosis: This is the heart of the system, the semi-permeable membrane allows the water molecules to pass through and dissolved contaminants are left behind.
  4. The Storage Tank: The cleaned water is sent to the storage tank until it’s needed.
  5. Final Polishing: A post-filtration stage adds some polish and character to the drinking water before it goes to the tap or a water using appliance.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, a RO filtration system is a great way to get clean and fresh water for drinking, making beverages, and cooking. The potential health benefits from avoiding chlorine byproducts and harmful PFAS chemicals that are linked to cancer cannot be underestimated. But, the first thing that you will notice is an absence of “taste” that actually comes from the contaminants in your drinking water. Some people compensate for this by adding pink salt or lemon juice to a glass of water to boost the taste.

By EcoWater Systems.
EcoWater Systems of Nebraska is the largest water treatment company in the state and is a member of Water Quality Association.