How does a Reverse Osmosis system work?
Let’s use a simple 4 stage R/O for example. A Reverse Osmosis system connects to the cold water supply under your sink. First, water passes through a micron-rated sediment filter, which removes large particles that float in the water like silt, sand, rust, dirt, etc. Second, the water passes through a Bituminous granulated coal filter that removes chlorine, some pesticides, herbicides and toxic chemicals. Third, water passes through the R/O membrane. Water is basically forced through the membrane. The water that makes it through is the purified water and the water that doesn’t make it is impure water and it is dumped down the drain. Fourth, the water slows down to a drop at a time and is accumulated in a pressurized storage tank. The water is then pushed out of the tank at about 40-60 psi through a 10 inch post coconut shell carbon filter designed to pick up anything missed by the previous filters insuring great taste on the way to the faucet.
Do I really need to be concerned with the safety of the water that comes from my tap?
Yes! According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, “The American Public can no longer take the purity of our drinking water for granted.” Over 700 organic and inorganic chemicals have been identified in drinking water and some of them are linked to cancer, birth defects, neurological disorders and a host of other afflictions.
But my water tastes O.K. and I have been drinking it for years and haven’t had any ill affects!
The average person will consume approximately 15,000 gallons of water in a life time. In many water supplies, there are contaminates that even in small quantities, can cause physical disorders as stated above. Most cities have up to 72 hours before they have to notify you that there is a problem with your water supply. Milwaukee and other cities have recently found fecal bacteria in their water supply resulting in some deaths and thousands of people ill. In Phoenix alone, between 1991 and 1992, there were reported to be 17,364 violations of E.P.A. Water Quality Standards, according to the “Natural Resources Defense Council” in Washington. It is not an issue of whether your water is harmful physically or not, the issue is for such a small price, why even allow it to be a concern. Besides, for such a small price, you can have safe water that tastes great too!
How is a Reverse Osmosis system different from just a filter?
The quality of the water is much better, your ice cubes will be clear and fresh, and the water will taste great. This is accomplished by using a combination of the three most effective water treatment technologies known. An expert from the office of Water Research and Technology said in the U.S. Dept.of the Interior Publication, 24-000-00855-0: “For general treatment (of water) to reduce both organic and inorganic loading to tolerable levels at lower energy costs, Reverse Osmosis(RO) offers significant advantages. It can accomplish the removal of many classes of contaminates to the desired degree of purity simultaneously. The significance of Reverse Osmosis (RO) is that it provides an additional processing tool with a broader capability, combined with lower energy costs, that has been available in the past.”
Will Reverse Osmosis water taste as good as the expensive water I buy?
Yes! Sometimes better, depending how well the bottled water company is maintaining their purification equipment. Reverse Osmosis is the same process used by most major bottled water companies. Even some companies that use “spring water” still use Reverse Osmosis to insure purity.
I have heard that Reverse Osmosis and water softening systems waste a lot of water.
Absolutely not! On the average, these systems will use less than 2% of your home’s total water consumption. In addition, if your Reverse Osmosis System is equiped with a water conservation valve the system shuts off when the tank is full. Many of the softeners on the market today are equiped to be very efficient in their water usage during regeneration.
How expensive are the filters for my drinking water system?
Depending on your system, over a year it will be approximately $4/per month for all the great tasting and good quality water you can drink.
How often do I need to change the filters on my Reverse Osmosis system?
Once a year. However, some prefilters are changed every six months. The Reverse Osmosis membrane is changed between two to five years, depending on your incoming water quality. Puretec Water Services will notify you when it is time to change your filters and which ones need changing so you don’t have to worry about keeping track.