Boulder City Magazine is a monthly publication full of information about Boulder City and Southern Nevada. Boulder City Magazine features the Boulder City Home Guide, a real estate guide to Boulder City and Southern Nevada.

Home Care
by Scott Sauer
Advanced Structural Inspections

Reverse Osmosis

Reverse osmosis is the finest filtration available today. It is the most common treatment technology used by premium bottled water companies.

It is effective in eliminating or substantially reducing a wide array of contaminants, and of all the technologies used to treat drinking water in residential applications, it has the greatest range of contaminant removal. It can remove substantial amounts of inorganic chemicals (salts, metals and minerals), most microorganisms and inorganic contaminants.

A typical RO system is composed of an array of granular activated carbon pre-filters, the reverse osmosis membrane, a storage tank, and a faucet to deliver the purified water to your countertop. Reverse osmosis systems vary in membrane quality, output capacity and storage capacity. The effectiveness of a reverse osmosis system will depend greatly on the quality of its components - especially its pre-filter cartridges and the membrane itself. Lower quality pre-filters will suffer from premature membrane fouling, as well as reduced performance, purified water output and membrane life.

Reverse osmosis uses a membrane that is semi-permeable, allowing pure water to pass through it, while rejecting the contaminants that are too large to pass through the tiny pores in the membrane. Quality reverse osmosis systems use a process that allows the membrane to continually clean itself. As some of the fluid passes through the membrane, the rest continues downstream, sweeping the rejected contaminants away from the membrane and down the drain.

To reduce membrane fouling and to maintain optimal performance, it is important to ensure that scheduled replacement of carbon or other pre-filters are followed. The reverse osmosis membrane should be replaced every 2-3 years. You can hire a professional to come into your home to perform the replacement and maintenance or you can remove your unit and take it to a local specialty store.

If you are concerned with the quality of your drinking water, consider having a reverse osmosis system installed in your home. Though they do vary in quality and price, they can greatly improve the quality and taste of your water.

For more on this or other home care subjects, contact Scott at

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