Early style CTA-type Home use Reverse Osmosis System

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Theory of Operation Comparative Performance

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Modern Style Thin-Film Composite(TFC) Multi-Stage Reverse Osmosis System

Home use reverse osmosis(R/O) systems represent a rapidly growing segment of the home water treatment industry. R/O systems are convenient and easy to use and they provide a moderately good quality of drinking water when incoming tap water does not contain an excessive amount of contamination.

The water conditioning industry has popularized this type of water treatment device by combining it with water conditioners(softeners) and marketing what is called a "Whole House" water treatment solution.

Many reverse osmosis systems are sold through direct sales operations into homes with elaborate presentations, water tests etc. and invariably tend to be highly overrated and over marketed compared to their true capabilities.

Reverse osmosis is not for every household, particularly situations where it is important that bacteria or other microbiological problems require removal. Contrary to what some salespersons tend to call a reverse osmosis system, it is NOT a "purifier". Purification requires the destruction and removal of bacteria, something which R/O does not accomplish.

Certified in-home medical studies of hundreds of systems in Canada have clearly demonstrated that reverse osmosis can increase bacteria levels in the treated water to levels which are thousands of times higher than occur in the incoming tap water, leading to exceptionally high incidences of gastrointestinal disorders.

The US reverse osmosis has understandably been strangely quiet about these problems which have been openly published in Canadian medical journals, particularly in light of the growing number of illnesses being attributed to bacterial problems in municipal and rural water systems in the United States.

If water cleanliness with respect to bacteria is unimportant to you, reverse osmosis will provide you with good tasting water under most tap water conditions, provided regular maintenance is performed on the membrane and filter components.

Such maintenance will normally amount to $125 to $150 in new membranes and filters on a yearly basis. Divide these typical numbers by the number of gallons of water you plan to use during a year and you will probably find that the cost per gallon approaches 50 cents.

On the other hand, if biological impurities are of concern to you or your family(children, pregnant wife, immune system problem, elderly) then you should consider a home water system system such as steam distillation which removes these potentially dangerous contaminants in their entirety. See System Comparison.

Should you decide to purchase a reverse osmosis system, remember that irrespective of the supposed quality of the output water produced by these units, their cost of manufacture is extremely low due to the use of plastics and other inexpensive components.

Therefore, you can find units in "big box" and discount stores for as low as $150 which will give you acceptable performance for a few months to perhaps a year or so. After that, the complete system is essentially useless.

For a few hundred dollars more(perhaps $400 to $600) one can purchase a terrific R/O system with built in water quality monitors, etc. Such units are displayed on our Shopping Cart.

To be perfectly honest, it is a complete and total waste of money to spend more than $600 on a top of the line home use reverse osmosis unit, regardless of marketing claims. Above that cost point, it is virtually impossible to improve on water quality or performance unless one goes to commercial systems costing several thousand dollars.




















































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