What Kind of Whole House RO Do I Need?
Question for the Water Doctor:
"I am purchasing a house with well water. As a city dweller and the owner of some large aquariums I would like to do whole house RO.
Could someone please reach out to me about a good whole house system/setup?
I found this link via Google: https://www.uswatersystems.com/systems/reverse-osmosis/whole-house-reverse-osmosis-systems
Answer from the Water Doctor:
Since Reverse Osmosis removes the largest spectrum of contaminants of any water treatment process (see Filtration Spectrum below), more and more people are turning to whole house reverse osmosis systems. Many people who opt for whole house reverse osmosis mistakenly believe that it will take EVERYTHING out of the water... and while it will, it won't do it for long without proper pretreatment.
One thing you need to remember is that reverse osmosis requires proper pre-treatment. A reverse osmosis system with proper pre-treatment will last 10-20 years, while one without proper pre-treatment may be junk in a few months.
You may need one or more the following depending upon your specific water chemistry:
- Backwashing Carbon Filter to remove organics and chlorine (Chlorine destroys RO membranes)
- Iron and/or Sulfur Removal System (Iron and Sulfur foul membranes)
- Water Softener or Anti-Scalant System (Prevents hard water plugging of membranes)
- Ultraviolet (UV) disinfection if the water has a high bacteria count. If bacteria is high it will foul and plug the membrane.
So, maybe you are starting to figure out that it would be a good idea to know EXACTLY what is in your water, and you would be completely right. A good carpenter measures twice and cuts once, but if you don't measure properly and cut off too much, you are in big trouble.
The same is true with reverse osmosis. The better the water analysis, the better the water can be treated. So, a comprehensive water analysis is essential. We recommend one of these:
This test is for city water and other applications where the water doesn't seem so bad:
If you have nasty well water with iron and sulfur, you might want to opt for this one:
And then, there is this one for cases of brackish water or higher usage and more critical issues (especially critical commercial applications):
It's always a matter of money, but knowledge is power and if it were possible, I would always recommend getting the biggest test. We do give you 50% of the cost of the test back, if you buy what we recommend, so that may be something you want to consider.
So, here's how it works, you order a water test from out website, then we send it to you. When you get it, follow the instructions carefully, draw the sample and send it directly to the laboratory (address is included in the box). It takes a week or two to get the results and then, we can make an informed recommendation as to what you will need and guarantee the results. Remember, if you purchase our recommendations, we will apply 50% to the purchase of your new reverse osmosis system.
Measure twice - Cut Once!