There are different types of filtration systems, and the reverse osmosis system is definitely one of the best in the market today. Its effectiveness largely depends on a lot of factors such as the type of membrane, the water pressure and concentration of contaminants.
RO system uses pressure which forces the external supply of water to flow through the membrane and passes out of the faucet after undergoing the different stages of filtration. All the impurities that were blocked from passing through the semi-membrane are usually discarded and wasted away to drain.
A reverse osmosis membrane comes in two distinct types. The first types are the CTA membranes (in full, cellulose triacetate ). These types are less expensive but have one major challenge: The membranes need to be regularly disinfected to avoid the growth of bacteria. This system is usually more effective with chlorinated water. It contains sediment pre-filters that come with post filter containing carbon.
The second type of membrane is the FTC membranes. These models are more expensive and are usually inorganic. This means that they cannot be affected by bacteria growth. But they can be damaged by chlorine if there is enough levels of contaminants in the water. This is the reason why most RO systems with FTC membranes make use of a carbon pre-filter which retains chlorine and prevent the failure of the TFC membranes.
RO systems can also be classified based on the tank features. Some are tankless while some others have tanks. They both have their benefits and shortfalls, so you cannot say one is better than the other. However, for convenience sake, a best reverse osmosis water system with tank will always provide better efficiency.
The first type of RO system makes use of a small tank where water is stored. It holds water before it is sent to the membranes for purification. Apart from water, the tank equally contains pressurized air that usually forces water out of the tank and into the membrane and faucet. When water stay in the tank for a long time, it can develop a flat taste. To prevent this, most manufacturers make use of in-line carbon filters located between the dispensing faucet and the tank.
The second type of RO system, which is the tankless models, makes use of multiple TFC membranes. This method allows filtered water to flow directly from the tap. The tankless systems occupy less space, do not need water storage and are more compact than the normal tank systems.
But they are more expensive than the traditional systems. Also, a tankless system needs not less than 40 PSI pressure to be able to operate effectively. This is why most companies include a pressure booster pump to increase the PSI.
Are there any shortfalls of the reverse osmosis system?
Yes, almost everything with benefits has a shortfall. The most notable one is the gallons of water that goes to waste before a gallon is produced using the RO system. Some low quality RO systems can waste as much as 5 gallons of water to produce a single one. But the high quality ones may waste about 2 gallons to produce a gallon of clean drinking water. This might pose a big concern if you have water scarcity in your area. But if water is no challenge, you can get the high quality RO system that waste lesser amount of water while producing high quality filtered water.
Another setback of this system is the fact that they produce water free of minerals. Its filtration system removes contaminants as well as minerals from the water. Some of these minerals such as calcium and magnesium are highly beneficial to the body. But there have been recent improvements in the design of some reverse osmosis systems. There are some high quality RO systems that filter with a new technology which still keeps these minerals in place and only remove the contaminants from the water.
Overall, a reverse osmosis system is one of the finest ways of drinking highly purified water without taste or ordor. It filters about 98% of the contaminants, leaving you with pure and clean drinking water. Although it doesn’t come without some disadvantages as seen above, these shortfalls can be overlooked if getting a safe drinking water is your concern.
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