Many people take for granted that the water coming out of their faucets is safe to drink. It’s clear and sparkling – that must mean it’s clean, right?
Unfortunately, there may be contaminants too small to see, but big enough to cause problems. Although water is treated by your local filtration plant, the filtration process doesn’t catch certain compounds and chemicals, which then make their way into your home.
The solution is a water filtration system that can clear out contaminants at the molecular level. That’s why Day & Night Air installs RO systems in Phoenix – to help our community get the absolute best out of their water.
What Is Reverse Osmosis?
While reverse osmosis may be considered a type of filtration, the mechanism by which it removes unwanted particles is very different from your standard water filter. RO systems move water across a membrane, which is so effective that it can catch materials as small as 0.001 micrometers. This allows the system to remove contaminants that would breeze by other filtration methods.
So why is it called “reverse osmosis?” Osmosis is a natural process that occurs every day in living cells – even the cells in your body experience osmosis. Water naturally moves from places with high water concentration to places with low water concentration, until equilibrium is reached. Water concentration can be lowered by the presence of other molecules, which take up space otherwise occupied by H2O. When this movement takes place through a semi-permeable membrane, it’s called osmosis.
As you might imagine, the “reverse” in RO systems means that the process is reversed, with water moving away from areas with a high concentration of other molecules. The result is pure water on one side and contaminants on the other.
How Does an RO System Work?
If osmosis is a natural process, how do you reverse it? The key is a great deal of pressure. Natural osmosis occurs through cell walls, but RO systems use a thin film composite membrane to act as a filter, through which water is forced. Some systems have a series of membranes to achieve maximum filtration.
Why Get an RO System?
There are many benefits to having an RO system:
- Removal of unwanted minerals
- Better-tasting water
- Removal of harmful bacteria
Individuals living in areas with “hard” water, or water that contains a lot of minerals, may especially benefit from RO systems, as even the use of a water softener isn’t as effective as reverse osmosis. While some minerals – like magnesium – are good for you, they’re often hard for the human body to absorb in their inorganic form. Ingesting too much of these minerals can cause all sorts of health issues:
- Hearing loss
- Kidney stones
Removal of these minerals also results in a cleaner taste, without the metallic flavor minerals often add.
If you have children, using a reverse osmosis system can protect them from lead in the tap water. As the crisis in Flint, Michigan, has shown, your city’s water supply can be contaminated without your knowledge, or inferior supplies and infrastructure used without your consent. Lead can have drastic effects on children, resulting in learning difficulties, seizures, weight loss, and developmental delays. Studies have shown that lead can also impact adults, especially pregnant women, who may miscarry if exposed to high levels. Couples trying to conceive may have fertility issues, as lead poisoning lowers sperm count.
As you can see, filtration isn’t just a matter of preference – there can be real health consequences to having contaminants in the water you use to drink and cook. This is especially true for young children, the elderly, cancer patients, and others who may have a weak immune system.
What Is the Installation Process for an RO System?
RO system installation is a relatively quick process, although it can require planning. If you have a garbage disposal or other system already present beneath your sink, you’ll need to ensure that there’s enough space for the water tank, filters, and tubing. The RO system also requires a faucet separate from your normal one. Many sinks have a hole where an extra faucet can be installed, but if yours lacks one, a new hole will have to be drilled.
After the system is hooked up, you’ll need to wait for adequate pressure to build in the tank. This generally takes about two hours. Before you start using the water, be sure to empty the tank once to completely purge the system.
Day & Night Air is dedicated to providing the best service to our customers. If you want to install a reverse osmosis system in Phoenix, our experts can help. Learn more about our services by contacting us at 602-900-9415 or visiting our contact page.