You’ve probably heard that reverse osmosis water filter systems do a fantastic job of removing or at least dramatically reducing the levels of pollutants in your water. On the other hand, you might know that some consider them to have a few weaknesses too.
This home water filtration system buyer’s guide takes a look at the pros and cons of reverse osmosis water filter systems. You can use the information to evaluate them for use in your own home.
Reverse Osmosis Water Filter Systems: How they Work
Reverse osmosis water filter systems use several filters to treat water. They must also be plumbed into the drain line. For this reason, they are usually installed in a sink cabinet. Incoming cold water first passes through one or two pre-filters to remove large sediment from the water.
Then, the water flows into the main filter that contains a special semi-permeable layer that is about as thick as cellophane. The water pressure forces water through the membrane, but most dissolved solids in the water are too large to pass through.
The contaminants that are stopped by the membrane are then flushed down the drain by water coming into the system. For every gallon of water that passes through the system, 1-5 gallons are used to flush away the impurities. Some systems have a post-filter for a final polishing of the water before it enters the tap.
The filtered water is stored in a tank with a capacity up to 2.5 or 3.0 gallons. The system is outfitted with its own faucet that is usually installed next to the standard faucet in the kitchen sink. The faucet of reverse osmosis water filter systems is fairly low-flow because of the difference between the volume of water flowing into the filter and the amount of filtered water produced. [Continue reading…]