While talking about pure drinking water, the word “Reverse Osmosis Water Filter” or “RO Water” has become extremely familiar in common parlance, that few pause to reflect on what it is, how it works and what to expect from it. According to Wikipedia, RO, or reverse osmosis water filtration system, is a water purification technology that uses a semipermeable membrane to remove ions, molecules, and larger particles from drinking water.
RO is one of the most reliable methods in modern times to ensure safe, clean and great tasting water. This last point is important because, while most of us think only of safety when it comes to water purification, taste is an important factor in drinking water. Pre-existing substances in water might lend an unpleasant taste of smell to water, which most other purification systems fail to address.
Infact, the RO process is so efficient in cleansing water of both impurities and unpleasant tastes and odours, that it is the default method used in desalination. According to Water-Technology, The Ashkelon seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO) plant – the largest in the world – has a capacity of 330,000m³ per day, and produces around 13% of the country’s domestic consumer demand – equivalent to 5–6% of Israel’s total water needs – at one of the world’s lowest ever prices for desalinated water.
While choosing a reverse osmosis filtration solution for your home or office, you must have a clear understanding of what to expect from it, and what it means to install one in your premises.
Water Pressure | Water pressure usually depends upon the overall water pressure in your facility. If incoming water is lower than required pressure, this could lead to slow flow of water.
Maintenance | Like all systems, regular and careful maintenance ensures that your RO system keeps functioning well for a long time, and keeps you supplied with clean and safe drinking water. Make sure you know the life cycle of components that required changing, and ensure that they are replaced at appropriate intervals with high quality replacements.
Cloudy Water | If a bit of cloudy water appears in your glass, this is almost always gas bubbles that forms as a result of high pressure. If you wait a while, the gas is sure to dissipate, leaving clear water. Persistent cloudiness could indicate the need for filter replacement or maintenance issues that may require technical support from your RO system’s installer.
Keep an eye on TDS levels | TDS stands for total dissolved solids, and this is effectively an indicator of the amount of undesirable dissolved particles in your water. Pure water has a TDS of zero, while the inlet water might have a higher to very high TDS levels, based on the amount of contaminant particles in the water.
The Discharge Water | Discharge water is inalienable to the reverse osmosis process, as this is a natural by-product of the filtration technique. While the discharge water does indeed contain slightly elevated levers of TDS, it is not entirely unusable. According to the Alliance For Water Efficiency: ‘The sanitary quality of RO discharge water suggests there are better uses for it than just irrigation. This water is perfectly suited to use for laundry and flushing toilets in home, when the sanitation of the water is maintained.”
Therefore, discharged water need not be considered as waste water. Depending upon the water quality in your location, this water might be perfectly suitable for a variety of non-consumptive uses.
By just bearing few simple points in mind, you can expect your reverse osmosis system to be remarkably long-lasting and efficient, providing you years and years of pure and perfect drinking water.