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Myth 6: Reverse Osmosis Wastes a lot of Water

Fact: Reverse Osmosis uses a lot of water, but that water can be reused.

reverse osmosis
Industrial reverse osmosis system

Of all the false opinions about the RO-filtered water, the latter myth is the only one based on truth.  Every liter of pure water produced by a reverse osmosis (RO) system wastes between 4 and 8 liters of water.  Some people claim that the amount of wasted water as many as 20 liters per liter.  However, this is not accurate. Most home RO systems maintain a ratio of 1/4 or 1/6, i.e. 1l of pure water / 4l of used water. Therefore, it is quite a lot of water that goes to waste.  On the other hand, it just shows how effective reverse osmosis filtering is. Remember that an RO system purifies water by removing thousands of unhealthy contaminants from tap water.  In contrast, no other home filter will do this.

Will you lose a fortune to maintain a reverse osmosis filter ?

The amount of water used during the filtration process equals 3 flushes of your toilet. In fact, you use much more water when washing dishes or running a washing machine than you do when filtering.  At the current price of water, you will pay monthly about 5 PLN for water used by reverse osmosis. It is worth noting, however, that RO filters retain the vast majority of impurities in the filtering membrane. As a result, water that is left over is as pure as tap water and can be used again, e.g. to water flowers in the garden or clean floors. How you can use the water that is the waste of the filtration process depends on your RO system.

Does the ‘waster’ water harm the environment?

Water that is wasted by RO is not at all contaminated.  It  can be reused.  For example, in Orange County, CA, water from a local reverse osmosis filtration system is sent back into the water supply and becomes tap water again.

On planet Earth there is no such thing as ‘new’ water. The water we are dealing with now is the same water that has circulated in our ecosystem for millions of years. Yes, the dinosaurs  drank the same water we do!

reverse osmosis water dinosaur
Dinosaur drinking water

Most water molecules never get destroyed, but keep circulating in our environment. No matter where clean water flows whether it goes down your throat, down your sink, into a river, falls as rain – it’s still the same water. This process has been going on for millions of years. The fact is that modern water is the water that dinosaurs (or other creatures) used to drink.

What does reverse osmosis give us?

First of all, the water we drink has been inside many different organisms. It has flowed down many riverbeds and has probably come into contact with every possible contaminant present on our planet. Reverse osmosis is the only solution that restores water to a state closest to its original form – pure H2O.

More facts and myths

Read more about dangers associated with Reverse Osmosis.

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