Reverse Osmosis Water Filtration System

In the course of "fixing a leak" in my R.O.W.F.S., I visited Lowes. Mine appeared only slightly different than the "Krystal Pure" model there, and both look like they were made on different days in the same factory, so I purchased the corresponding filters and a membrane. $70-ouch.
I noticed that I replaced a 75 gallon/day (almost doubly more expensive) membrane with a more-conventional 24 gallon/day membrane (certified by the "Water Quality Association, no less). Inscribed on the replacement membrane's box: "Fit's most standard Reverse Osmosis Systems", and "cleaner ice cubes!" --the former was an important selling point for me.
Volume of water is not an issue, since we probably don't draw 1/2 gallon/day. The R.O.W.F.S. appears to function and no longer leaks. My primary question is: Should I be concerned about the membrane substitution?
As this is a 5-part purifier (rather than a 4-part purifier), there is an additional 2" long "inline filter" (with '600' marked on it in black letters), which the water travels through last I think, which I'll probably order from the manufacturer. Any further info about it?
I can no longer say I am completely ignorant of my R.O.W.F.S.... what a pain! ; ) Anyone actually replacing all of these filters according to the calendar? Smart to have some new O-rings handy...
Bill
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Never tried a different filter than specified, Bill, but I'd guess that if it doesn't leak you're cool..
We have 2 filters and the membrane thing.. The filters are fairly inexpensive, so we change them when we notice a drop in volume.. usually about 3 times a year.. We change the membrane IF the water has any taste.. I think in 4 years we've changed it twice.. We only use it for the drinking water spout on the kitchen sink and the icemaker, so it's pretty much just for ice, drinking water and coffee, so it's a fairly small volume unit..
We also have a "whole house" pre-filter between the cistern and pump.. Mostly to catch sand..

mac
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If it hadn't started leaking, I'm not sure I would have ever touched it! :) We use it very lightly too, for drinking and cooking, as did the couple who owned the house before us. They marked down that they replaced the filter every 2 years and I don't think they ever changed the membrane (in 5 years or so). Thank you for your comments.

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I learned that this is a <patented> "inline flow restrictor" which "accurately restricts the drain line and creates proper working pressure for the operation of the reverse osmosis process".
Looks like I have one final stage 9" carbon filter to go, before I'm caught up on my filters~
To be honest, this appliance seems to be awfully "high-maintenance" for my life-style! The water purification folks seem morally-looser than the likes of B & D or Comcast, especially at the BORGs (based on 1 Borg).
Bill
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It is somewhat bothersome to change the Brita filter and wash the container every month or so. I wouldn't mind having a more carefre system, but it looks like an RO system is bothersome too.
We use the Brita system for drinking, cooking and so on, even including ice cubes, but we don't use many ice cubes unless it's really hot.
--
Best regards
Han
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Hans,
I don't have any numbers in front of me, but I suspect the RO system is doing ALOT more filtration. Someone must have already tested this out and posted the details somewhere (I think it would make for interesting reading).
If you do consider buying an RO system, you might consider those here (to save 30-60% off the prices at Lowes):
http://filterdirect.com/index.php?cPath "
I have the 5-stage unit priced above at $143 (purchased in 2006 for $96). A "lesser" unit at Lowes was $229, and another one there was $329. I can't give more details as I was there to figure out how to repair a leak.
In my case removal of existing pipes is required to get the 4-gallon tank in and out of the sink cabinet. Installation of the "dispenser" that sits on top of the sink/countertop looks like the hardest part of the install because a sequence of hardware pieces is attached to it underneath (and mine, at least, isn't that easy to get to!). I'm guessing that for me it might be a "frustrating" 4-hour install--with drilling the hole for the dispenser being a "key" step. I suspect that a "pro" could probably do it in little more than 30 minutes. Ice-maker-extra! : )
Bill
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Thanks for the info, Bill. I am not handy enough to go drill through my Silestone countertop. Moreover, as a person cponcerned about water use, I would question how much water is wasted as drainage water or concentrate or whatever you want to call it. At least I understand that not all the water going intoan RO system comes out as drinkable water.
(please, my name is only 3 letters, Han).
--
Best regards
Han
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Sorry, Han.
Yes, I don't think they are that efficient--accoring to the followink link, it takes about 4.6 gallons of water to produce 1 gallon of purified water.
http://uclue.com/?xq 00.
I guess it depends on the quality of the water you are starting with, and how well your alternatives work, as to whether or not it's worth it. Not only that, after you change the filters, you need to empty the tank twice before you drink any. I estimate that this requires 30 gallons of water.
I did not however, wish to present a false impression about the maintenance. It seemed "burdensome" to me this time because I started off with a leak and next to zero-knowledge about the system.
They advise replacing all the filters (4) once per year and the membrane every 2 years. Having done it once, I could replace all of the filters and the membrane in 15 or 20 minutes. Following the directions, and sanitizing "everything" with bleach, would seem to add quite a bit of time to the operation. I would order some extra O-rings (for at the top of the cannisters), and some "plumber's silicone grease" for lubrication, just in case a neighbor might need to borrow them.
Bill
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Thanks again, Bill.
I think I'll stay with the Brita filters then for a while longer. Of course they generate landfill, but at least they don't waste that much water. I'm also happy to know that the silver ions coming off the Brita filter keep the water reasonably sanitized, if what goes in is indeed drinking water quality.
--
Best regards
Han
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*snip*

*snip*
We took the RO filter system out of my sister's house. Not only could it not be used with copper lines (RO water will attack the copper...looking for missing minerals), but used a lot of water to make RO water.
Instead of RO water or other filters, we have bottled spring water delivered in 5 gallon jugs. It's something like $1/gallon, which would probably work out to be cheaper than filters for a RO unit. (Cleaning and ice rink filling is done from the well...)
The only maintenance is to change the jugs when empty and occasionally clean out the caraffe.
Puckdropper
--
Never teach your apprentice everything you know.

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"Puckdropper" <puckdropper(at)yahoo(dot)com> wrote in message

You are less likely to incur water damage from a leak too. Ours sits adjacent to hard wood floor. We have a "FloodStop" shut device on our washing machine, and I noticed they make similar devices for RO units.. Geeze.. to much tecnology can get out of hand! : )
Bill
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about taking a daily vitamin, because it takes the good stuff out of the water along with the bad.. OTOH, living where water has a high mineral content and is delivered to the house in tank trucks, crystal clear ice cubes with no odor is wonderful..
mac
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On Sat, 15 May 2010 16:12:16 -0600, Bill wrote

With the under-sink model I have, all the water before the membrane passes through a 'ball of yarn' filter and two carbon filters. We just let the RO drain line run outside for the plants. -BR
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At the moment we have plenty of naturally distilled precipitation here in New Jersey. Also, have you checked the conductivity of the drain water? If your water supply is on the hard side, your plants will get lots of calcium and magnesium from the drain water ...
--
Best regards
Han
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On Sun, 16 May 2010 08:52:04 -0600, Han wrote

Our naturally distilled precipitation contains a lot of dirt/dust. We only get about 7 inches of it a year. Plenty of minerals, ayup.
-BR
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<snip>

Our RO system is pretty maintenance free... It's under the kitchen sink and except for filter changes, it chugs along all by itself..
mac
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