Pros and Cons of Reverse Osmosis Water Filtration
What are the Pros and Cons of Reverse Osmosis Water Filters?
Millions of U.S. households have installed under-sink Reverse Osmosis (RO) drinking water systems. But are they worth it? Is reverse osmosis filtered water good for your health? Are RO replacement filters expensive? Let's explore the pros and cons of Reverse Osmosis water filtration.
Advantages of Reverse Osmosis
Better-Tasting Water and Food
Because Reverse Osmosis has the ability to remove 95-99 percent of total dissolved solids (TDS) in drinking water, as well as improve the odor, appearance, and overall taste of your water, it’s no mystery why many restaurants use RO-filtered water in their cooking. Cooking with filtered water that is free of impurities can dramatically impact the flavor of coffee, tea, soup and most items made with water.
Family Drinks More Water
Installing an RO system in your home will give your household clean, great-tasting water to drink and cook with. In fact, many families have found that after installing a reverse osmosis drinking water system, family members tend to drink more water and consume less soda or other sugary drinks.
Health Benefits of Reverse Osmosis
Although water is processed at municipal treatment plants, many people want to take their drinking water a step further to ensure that lead, chlorine, fluoride, and other impurities are removed. Reverse Osmosis water filtration has proven to be unrivaled when it comes to removing impurities from water in an efficient and cost-effective manner. Learn more about what a Reverse Osmosis Filter system can remove.
Reverse Osmosis Can Save You Money
An RO system can produce clean, filtered water for pennies per gallon. For families that spend a lot on bottled water each month, or pay to have a water jug delivery service, a reverse osmosis drinking water system installed at the kitchen sink can save a lot of money. How much do RO systems cost? Single faucet Reverse Osmosis systems cost anywhere from $195 to $435. And if you install the system yourself (which a lot of people successfully do), you can save money there, as well.
While some water filtration and purification systems are cumbersome and time consuming to maintain, a reverse osmosis filtration system is quite easy. Simply change out the filters and membranes according to your system’s manual. And if you buy from ESP Water Products, we'll send you a reminder when it's time to order a replacement filter! Most filters are replaced every six to 12 months and the membrane should be replaced every two years. This length can vary depending on the water quality in your area and how much you use your RO system.
Disadvantages of Reverse Osmosis
Reverse Osmosis Filters Can Clog
The tiny pores of an RO system can become clogged if not properly maintained. Even common chlorine can damage an RO system. Therefore, RO system owners should carefully follow the system’s maintenance manual and service guidelines. In some cases, RO owners have also invested in a sediment pre-filter to protect the system from fouling. To understand what it takes to change your own filter, we recommend you read this.
Filter Replacement Cost
Although an RO system can produce clean, delicious water for pennies per gallon, there is the ongoing expense of filter replacements. Especially if you have a proprietary brand such as Culligan or Rainsoft. The replacement filters can be very expensive.
As an alternative to the pricey proprietary filters, we offer brand-compatible filters that are high-quality filter alternatives. Search by your RO system's brand and model to see if we carry compatible filters.
NOTE: Reverse Osmosis systems are virtually maintenance free, but should be cleaned and sanitized once per year.
Does Reverse Osmosis Water Filtration Waste Water?
Let us explain the reverse osmosis process this way: If you have dirt on your hands, how would you remove it? You would use water to rinse off the dirt. Does this mean you are "wasting water"? Most would say no, but that you're simply using water to wash the hands.
Simply put: in the Reverse Osmosis process, water is utilized to "wash" impurities out of your water, too. Yes, water itself is what is needed to produce clean water in the reverse osmosis process.
How Much Water do Reverse Osmosis Systems Use?
This process generally requires about 4 gallons of water to produce one gallon of clean, filtered water. The amount of water used in the filtration process can vary depending on water temperature, contaminants present, and amount of dissolved solids in the water.
Do 'Zero Waste' Reverse Osmosis Systems Work?
We're occasionally asked if 'zero waste" filtration systems (that recycle contaminated water) are a viable solution to filter and still conserve water?
The idea of 'zero waste' sounds good in theory, but in reality, we have not seen this technology work successfully, and here's why:
1) Zero Waste systems reduce water usage by circulating the contaminated water back into the system repeatedly. With a normal Reverse Osmosis system, this contaminated water is flushed out. But with a zero waste system, the contamination builds up higher and higher, often wearing down on filter components and water filtration system itself.
2) Zero Waste or recycled RO water systems attempt to reduce water usage by sending the contaminated-concentrated water to the hot water line. This means that users are washing their hands or dishes with contaminated water.
How Does Reverse Osmosis Work?
Before discussing water waste, it's important to understand how reverse osmosis water filtration works. In simple terms, the reverse osmosis process utilizes household water pressure to push water through a series of water filters including a semi-permeable membrane. Because the pressure is higher on the outside of the membrane, the small water molecules pass through to the lower pressure side, and the larger molecules of contaminants are rejected and cannot push through. These trapped impurities are then washed away by—you guessed it—water!
The small water molecules that were able to push through the RO membrane, are collected in a storage tank and you have pristine water ready for consumption.
Reverse Osmosis: Proven Method for Clean Water
Our company has been in the water filtration business since 2003, and we've found that reverse osmosis consistently proves to be one of the most effective ways to filter drinking water. But we invite you to learn more about the advantages and disadvantages of RO systems before making a purchase.
And with a carbon filter, an RO system can also remove chlorine to improve the taste, odor and appearance of your water. The process is fully automated, effective and simple to maintain.
Best Under-Sink Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Systems for 2021
The following under-counter Reverse Osmosis (RO) systems can reduce lead, fluoride, chlorine and more:
50 GPD Reverse Osmosis System
- Quick-Change No-Mess Replacement Filters Under Sink
- Compact Size for Simple Installation Under Sink
- 50 Gallon Per Day Rated Membrane
- 4-Stages of Filtration
- Made in USA
- Free Shipping
100 GPD Reverse Osmosis System
Watts Kwik Change 4-Stage
- Quick-Change No-Mess Replacement Filters
- 100 Gallon Per Day Rated Membrane
- 4-Stages of Filtration
- Designer Faucet
- Space-Saver Storage Tank Only 9” Wide
- FREE Shipping