Top 4 Best Reverse Osmosis Systems For Water Purification

I know that many folks think purification systems can be a little confusing and complicated, so I thought it would be a good idea to help provide some direction and data that might help identify the best reverse osmosis products available. Of all the hundreds to choose from, I think these make the most sense for most consumers. For ease of use, quality of water, and best engineering and construction, these are the water purification systems I would take a look at.

Reverse Osmosis (RO) water purification has proven to be the leading technology to get the best water purity with the least contaminants. Homeowners and office managers know what happens when impure water is used for cooking, drinking, or washing dishes. Reverse Osmosis water filters work by removing bacteria, contaminants, chemicals, and debris from the water and introducing pH-balancing materials that improve the water’s taste.

This type of water purification is used in homes as well as in industrial settings. The goal is to produce water without unwanted ingredients using a permeable filter that captures undesirable materials. This purification process has developed the ability to purify water up to 99.9% pure. People with health issues, high mineral content water, and water wells use reverse osmosis purification to improve the water’s purity, clarity, and taste.

The Best Reverse Osmosis Water Purification Systems

Prices and images pulled from the Amazon Product Advertising API on:

Product Reviews

There are hundreds of RO products on the market, but I’ve found these 4 systems to be the best candidates for a homeowner to use. The first on the list is my personal favorite because it’s a great purification system for a home or use in a small office.

APEC Top Tier 6-Stage Ultra Safe Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Filter System (ULTIMATE RO-PH90)

This Reverse Osmosis product is first on my list for good reason. I’ve found it to be one of the most user-friendly systems. What I like is the water filters last a long time so they don’t need to be replaced as often as other purification filters and that saves quite a lot of money. This 6-stage system more than meets the needs of most homeowners providing 50 gallons per day for cooking and consumption.

The APEC RO-PH90 filtration process removes 99% of contaminants while delivering a high volume of flow. This design doesn’t restrict the amount of water coming through the tap as other designs can. Another feature I think is important is the amount of noise the water purification process can make and this product is very quiet.

Good Stuff
  • Certified for 99% purity levels
  • Removes over 1,000 contaminants
  • Comes with Faucet tap and quick-connect fittings
  • pH + Alkaline enhanced filter material makes water taste good
Not-so-Good Stuff
  • Takes up a fair amount of space under the sink
See Reviews

APEC Top Tier 6-Stage Ultra Safe Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Filter System (ESSENCE ROES-PH75)

I chose this filter system because it is made by the same company as my first choice. If you need more volume of water for any reason, this is the best kitchen water filter to meet those needs. Larger families or busy offices find this design much more useful for high volume uses like filling large coffee urns or other large vessels. I also like this product because it is easy to install for most homeowners which saves money and frustration.

Homeowners who use more water each day will love the 75 Gallon-per-day volume along with the higher pressure used to purify the water. This product is engineered to handle between 40 and 80 psi water line pressure, which is the range of pressure most water lines provide. This purification design utilizes a 6-stage process that adds calcium carbonate to help balance the water’s pH level while also improving the water’s taste.

Good Stuff
  • Certified for 99% purity levels
  • 6-stage system
  • Comes with Faucet tap and quick-connect fittings
  • pH + Alkaline enhanced filter material makes water taste good
Not-so-Good Stuff
  • Has a 1:3 ratio of water dispensed to water expelled – 1 gallon dispensed to 3 gallons expelled.
  • Takes up a lot of space under the sink – you may want to place it in a different location.
See Reviews

Global Water RO-505 5-Stage Reverse Osmosis System Water Quality Filter – Plus Extra Set Of 4 Filters For Free

This is another great home or small office purification system. A 5-stage design that operates with standard water pressure ranges from 40 to 80 psi. It requires no electricity to operate, only water pressure. Small enough to fit in the small cabinets and storage bins in most RVs, trailers, and motor homes.

What appeals to me about this purification product is the amount of customer support the manufacturer provides. Their 24/7 customer service can be quite handy when questions arise or problems occur. This is a valuable benefit for homeowners who have questions while installing their product in the evening or on a weekend.

The faucet and tank are engineered for long-life without causing taste issues by being completely lead-free. Not all manufacturers go to this length.

Good Stuff
  • Achieves 99% purity levels
  • 50 gallons per day
  • Comes with extra filters from the factory
  • Final stage Carbon filter improves water taste
Not-so-Good Stuff
  • Can be a little challenging to install in an RV – plumber installation recommended
See Reviews

Home Master TMHP HydroPerfection Undersink Reverse Osmosis Water Filter System

This filtration design is engineered with a 1:1 ratio of wastewater to usable water making it one of the most efficient purification processes available. A higher volume of 75 gallons per day makes this model perfect for large families or offices. The permeate pump backwash enables this product to off-put significantly less wastewater.

One feature that I think is valuable is the in-line Ultra-violet (UV) light that kills 99.9% of bacteria, germs, and viruses. I like that extra step in the purification process because if the source water comes from public or private water lines, the bad contaminants that can make people sick are removed completely.

Good Stuff
  • Achieves 98% purity levels with 99.99% bacterial filtration
  • Long-life 2,000-gallon filter
  • UV Light filter included
  • Iron filter included for well water applications
Not-so-Good Stuff
  • Must have an electrical outlet for UV light operation
See Reviews

Which Reverse Osmosis System To Choose

The most important factor when deciding which purification product to purchase is how much water volume is needed daily.

The next consideration, in my opinion, should be the ratio of wastewater to potable water. The more water that gets filtered the more water that gets wasted down the drain. In areas where water service is expensive, this can cause a budget-busting result.

Another concern of mine deals with the time between filter changes and the ease with which a filter can be switched out.

What Should I Look For When Buying A Reverse Osmosis System?

Space Matters

One of the more obvious concerns is space. Some folks like having their system installed directly under their kitchen sink inside the sink cabinet. Due to the size, configuration, and water lines involved in installing the purification components, some systems won’t fit there.

Those products that take up a lot of space have to be installed in a separate location like underneath the floor where the sink is positioned. Some homeowners get creative and place a cabinet next to the sink, in a garage or another location near the kitchen.

Take It On the Road

rv reverse osmosis water filter

RV and trailer owners find these purification products indispensable because of the variety of water sources they encounter in their travels. Any of the systems I’ve chosen will work in a trailer or RV, however, caution should be exercised when the unit is not in use.

Purification systems left outdoors during cold weather can freeze and crack filters, fittings, and water lines. All components should be completely drained before being put into storage.

It’s also a good idea to drain the filtration system even if the weather doesn’t get cold enough to freeze water as residues and other unwanted contaminants can build up and attach themselves to surfaces.

After Purchase Considerations

Buying a water purification system is one thing; paying for the filters and other expenses is another. When a water purification design makes less wastewater, the filters will last longer and require less change-out. Many filtration products boast about filters that need to be changed only once a year. Be careful because this claim may not reflect what your actual usage will be.

For the most part, families use around 50 gallons of potable water a day. Calculate that for a year and it is 18,000 gallons of water passing through the filters. Filters are rated for gallons of use and attention should be paid to the total gallons filtered before replacing filters.

Even though a manufacturer claims to have a filter that lasts a year, your actual result can vary widely.

Made in the USA is the Best Choice

All of my choices are made in the US of A and come with US-made components. The same applies to filters and all other equipment is designed, engineered, and manufactured to domestic standards. Offshore products often don’t meet the same standards as products produced in the United States and they should be investigated thoroughly before purchasing.

With all the variables involved in manufacturing a water filtration system, issues about replacement parts, and availability of service support, I think a product supported by a US-based manufacturer will be easier to work with in most cases.

What Are The Advantages Of Reverse Osmosis?

Reverse Osmosis Infographic

Reverse osmosis (RO) has 5 main features that make it stand out from the rest of the water filtering systems:

  1. Better Tasting Water: RO removes many dissolved substances efficiently, yet produces a good tasting finished water
  2. Complete Purification: It does not add any other chemicals to your water. It merely separates the dissolved substances
  3. Low Energy Consumption: A lot of time uses water pressure instead of electricity, saving you tons of money in the long run
  4. Many Purification Levels: Some systems have up to 7 stages of water purification. This means the water will be completely pure when it reaches your faucet
  5. Environmentally Friendly: You won’t buy as much bottled water as before, or even stop completely. These bottles quickly fill up landfills and pollute the environment.

In short, reverse osmosis is a highly effective water purification system. Can you think of a reason why not to use it? Tell me in the comment section below.

How Often Should I Change My Reverse Osmosis Membrane?

A rule of thumb is to replace your reverse osmosis membrane every 2-3 years.

Why can’t I specify an exact interval? Because it depends on several factors, like:

  1. Quality of the membrane
  2. Local water conditions
  3. Water usage

How Do You Know If RO Membrane Is Bad?


Short version:
When your rejection drops below 95% as indicated with your TDS meter.

Long Version:
Although RO (reverse osmosis) membranes are capable of maintaining high water quality over extended periods of time they eventually will begin to deteriorate. Normally, the conductivity of the permeate (output or “clean” water) will increase as the membranes age.

By comparing the difference in total dissolved solids (TDS) readings between the Tap water (inlet water presented to the membrane for treatment) conductivity and the permeate water conductivity, the percentage of rejection of the RO membrane may be calculated and the resultant number may then be used to determine the condition of the membrane and thus the operator will know when the membrane needs to be replaced. Membrane failure will be indicated by a reduction of the percentage of rejection which will be determined by calculating the differential between the input and output numbers.

In order to accurately determine the condition of the RO Membrane, a decent quality conductivity tester (TDS meter) capable of reading the tap water conductivity and the permeate water conductivity should be used. With the assistance of the TDS meter, you will be able to easily determine the RO membrane’s condition.

Before performing the diagnostic test on an RO membrane, make sure that the RO system has been “ON” and producing pure water for a minimum of 10 minutes. Also, check the brine (waste) line (usually yellow) to make sure that water is flowing and that the flow ratio between the permeate water and the brine water is at a ratio that is > 4 to 1.

NOTE: The pressure gauge should indicate a pressure reading of > 40 PSI during this 15-20 minute test period. Rejection rates of less than 95% may indicate that the membrane should be replaced.


[Source]

Some membranes and filters have indicators that alert you when you need to replace them.

How Do I Change My Reverse Osmosis Filter?

Before performing any maintenance, wear gloves!

  1. Turn off the water and open the faucet to release pressure
  2. Unscrew filter housings
  3. Place filter tanks in an upright position (there’s still water in them) and carefully remove the filters
  4. Clean the tanks
  5. Insert new filter cartridges
  6. Use the same procedure when changing the membrane
  7. Screw back the filter tanks (don’t overtighten them! The plastic and the O-rings break easily)
  8. Test the system

Take a look at this video for more details:

What Is The Best Reverse Osmosis Water System?

Depending upon the different considerations that have to be satisfied before purchasing a water filtration system, for me, the APEC RO-PH90 is the best choice of all. I like the size of the components, ease to switch filters, and reliability the system gives me as well as the long-life filters the company manufactures.

Regardless of which purification product best meets your needs and specifications, any of these high-quality filtration systems will do the job for years and years.

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Best Reverse Osmosis Systems

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About Mario 60 Articles
I am the owner of the Kitchen Guru Ideas. I've set up this site so I can share my kitchen tips and hacks that have been passed on to me from my parents and grandparents and show you how a wonderful experience cooking is and not just a way to save money. Even in this hectic lifestyle, there is time to prepare and most important enjoy a home-cooked meal.

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