Reverse Osmosis - Part 2: Is an RO System Right for You?
What is so special about Reverse Osmosis drinking water?
Desalination technology has brought fresh water to areas of the world that have greatly benefited from a supply of sanitary, fresh water. Industrial and commercial development to these areas have also improved the health and welfare of its citizens. Countries, municipalities, the armed services, and ships have all benefited from reverse osmosis technology’s ability to produce fresh water by desalination. A lack of natural sources of fresh water has made RO invaluable for the health and welfare of our world.
As water scarcity becomes more prevalent, alternative sources of sustainable water will be crucial for bringing long-term resource and economic stability. Today, with the necessary understanding of feedwater source conditions, pre-treatment needs, and high-quality system engineering, reverse osmosis can be applied to almost any ground or surface water desalination and purification application.
Reverse Osmosis and Fluoride
Fluoride molecules are larger than water molecules, therefore RO systems will effectively filter out fluoride ions from your drinking water. According to the American Dental Association, fluoride is normally added to municipal drinking water at a concentration of around 1 part per million, at which level it helps prevent tooth decay. Some ground water sources can naturally contain higher levels of fluoride caused by minerals that dissolve into water. A fluoride level of 4ppm or higher can have the opposite effect on your teeth, causing tooth discoloration as well as other health concerns.
As with any substance, excess intake or exposure can be harmful. Although a low level of fluoride in water can reduce the prevalence of tooth decay in the local population, concerns have arisen regarding fluoride’s effect on health, including problems with bones, teeth, and neurological development. The World Health Organization (WHO) notes that long-term exposure to drinking water containing more than 1.5 ppm fluoride can lead to health problems.
Fluoride that is removed from water processed by reverse osmosis can be obtained in other ways. Many dental products already contain fluoride including most toothpastes. The fluoride in these products provides enough dental protection to inhibit tooth decay negating the fluoride present in city water. Fluoride can also be found in many foods and drinks, such as certain fish or teas. While small amounts of fluoride can be beneficial in tooth decay prevention, good dental hygiene and the appropriate intake level of calcium is just as important in supporting dental health.
Is Reverse Osmosis Water Healthy to Drink?
Where you live, where your water comes from (a well or municipal supply), safety regulations, and type of water treatment, are all factors that determine what could be lurking in your water. It is estimated that as many as 85,000 different chemicals end up in our water supplies and can include things like lead, pesticides, industrial chemicals, and heavy metals. Some contaminants are harmless, but others can lead to illness or long-term medical concerns.
Given how powerful and effective reverse osmosis systems are, it may be surprising to note that most all systems don’t use electricity to perform. RO systems use the water pressure in your home to naturally produce clean, pure, household drinking water at a 99% filtration efficiency rate. The only maintenance would be to replace the sediment prefilter and carbon post-filters every 6 months, replace the polishing filter every year, replace the membrane every 3-5 years, and periodically repressurize the storage tank bladder when the draw pressure feels low.
RO is the perfect solution if you’re looking for outstanding water from a low-maintenance system that effectively provides the best-tasting, freshest water available. When you purchase a reverse osmosis water filter, you’re making a conscious decision to put your health first.