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Distillation Vs. Reverse Osmosis

Posted by on 12/23/2009

The two most commonly recommended types of water by doctors are distilled water and reverse osmosis water. Both types are generally very pure although both can allow the carry over of trace contaminants if boiling points are similar or if molecular size is similar. Unfortunately, many advocates are unaware that ultra pure water is not the best for regular long-term consumption and that it can carry an unexpected long-term health risk.

The Reverse Osmosis water filter is one of the most popular types of water filters today. This is perhaps of the way they trap the impurities that are in or go along with your water. Nevertheless, for a typical home owner, it is very important that you understand how reverse osmosis water filters really work. Reverse-osmosis filtration is a purification process in which pressurized water passes through a thin semi permeable membrane that strips out a wide array of contaminants and inorganic impurities. It starts with a membrane that only allows pure water or solvent to flow through it. It forces the water or solvent to pass through the membrane from high solute content region to low solute content region. For industrial use a reverse osmosis system is good for eliminating a wide range of contaminants such as chemicals, heavy metals like lead and heavy salt contents. The complete system strips out lead, copper, arsenic, cadmium, chlorine, Guardia, pesticides, salt, tri-halo-methanes, sulfates, cysts, and nitrates. It uses three tiered filter mechanism that filters out even small bacteria and viruses. It filters out smaller microbes as well that keeps your drinking water very safe.

Distillation is one of the oldest methods of water treatment and is still in use today, though not commonly as a home treatment method. It can effectively remove many contaminants from drinking water, including bacteria, inorganic and many organic compounds. . Note that distillation home water treatment is considered only a temporary solution. The best solutions to a contaminated drinking water problem are to either end the practices causing the contamination or change water sources. Distillation is a process that relies on evaporation to purify water. Contaminated water is heated to form steam. Inorganic compounds and large non-volatile organic molecules do not evaporate with the water and are left behind. The steam then cools and condenses to form purified water. Distillation units are usually installed as point of use systems. They are generally placed at the kitchen faucet and used to purify water intended for drinking and cooking purposes only.

Both distillation and reverse osmosis provide water that is over 99% pure, RO systems being our favorite.  And in the end, isn�t that what purification is all about?

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