What is reverse osmosis?
Besides being a term from high school science class that you may have forgotten, this process is an increasingly common way to filter water. It uses pressure to force water through several layers of filters to help remove impurities.
Why is it important?
Other than making most sources of water taste much cleaner, it is a safe way to ensure your family’s health by increasing quality of water consumed. Reverse osmosis filtration systems can’t always eliminate every potential danger in water, and much depends on the quality of the device, so it is best to know the source of the water. This filtration system can help remove bacteria, sediment, parasites, and viruses that can be harmful and even deadly. While in most countries water is already filtered even through the tap before reaching the consumer, it can still pick bacteria through stagnation or even just from the pipes.
Isn’t just boiling water cheaper?
Of course boiling water will work in a pinch. Many outdoorsman and campers have been boiling water sources successfully for ages. However, while it can be a quick problem-solver, it is not fail-proof nor a replacement for quality filtration. If not heated high or long enough, boiling will not kill all bacteria and parasites present. Water disinfected with this method will also only last a short period of time. You cannot boil large quantities for later use.
Are there any risks?
No filtration system is perfect, but reverse osmosis is often considered the safest and most effective treatment currently on the market. Replacement of the filters or membranes regularly is important though, as these can become moldy or damaged, which can negate their effectiveness.
Is it expensive?
There are a wide range of reverse osmosis filtration systems available ranging from budget products like water pitchers with built-in membranes, to larger devices that require professional installation. You can spend anywhere from forty dollars to hundreds depending on you and your family’s needs. You may wish to look into the purity of your local water to help you determine which filter will best work for you. Counties can vary greatly in the quality of water they provide their residents. If you are a regular outdoorsman or travel often, you may wish to research some portable as well as more durable systems that you can bring with you on your trips.