We started using a reverse osmosis water filtering system back in the UK. The tap water where we lived in Whittlesey, Cambridgeshire, was ok, but tasted horrible. We were also really concerned about drinking water (or using products) that contained fluoride.
So, what does an RO system do? Well basically, it makes the water totally pure and balances the pH levels to make the water 7 on the scale – neutral. Most tap water is maintained at around 6.5 to 8.5 pH. Now there are some disadvantages to some types of RO systems, depending on the type you buy, which I’ll come on to.
You generally see 3 stage or 5 stage systems, and there’s a very important difference between the two, and that’s the re mineralization stage. If you have a 3 stage system, it is possible to add a remineralization filter between the system and the tap, so it means you don’t have to buy a whole new system at least!
So, why is remineralization so important? We’ll, drinking totally pure water is not actually that good for you. Because it doesn’t contain trace minerals, the water will actually leach these minerals out of your body as it passes through. Not good! The remineralization stage also puts back some taste into the water too.
So, on the upside, a reverse osmosis system is an excellent way to drink very healthy water. They are particularly popular here in Spain as town water doesn’t taste that great. As a result they are fairly cheap here compared to what we paid back in the UK (around £300 plus £60 each year for filters compared to roughly half that cost here). We had one back in the UK mainly to filter out the fluoride, as this can calcify the pineal gland.
Our pineal gland is tiny and sits deep in the brain. It produces melatonin and is the biological representation of our 3rd eye, connecting us spiritually to the universe. To be honest, this subject is a blog of it’s own, but I couldn’t talk about filtering out fluoride without some explanation as to why that is important! On a biological level, melatonin regulates our sleep and affects our mood – I have seen some studies suggesting links to various illnesses, such as Alzheimer’s and schizophrenia, but I’m not a doctor, so I’ll leave that there! There are lots of other things, such as dairy, that can also contribute to a calcified pineal gland too.
From personal experience, all I will say is that I saw a huge difference in myself when I stopped drinking water with fluoride – everything became very clear in my mind. It was not long after changing to RO water that we threw everything up in the air and moved to Spain, changing our lives beyond recognition!
So, what are the downsides? Well, there’s the initial cost, and annual cost of replacement filters to consider. This is a no brainer for us though, as without the RO system we would have to buy bottled water … and the cost of that would far exceed the cost of the RO system, never mind the plastic etc that we would be using. There is an amount of waste with an RO system – it takes 4 liters of water for every one liter of actual drinking water out of the tap. Now we have our waste water going out into the veg garden, so ours isn’t actually going to waste, but it’s something to be aware of.
After owning a couple of different systems over the years, here’s a couple of top tips that we’ve learned the hard way!
1. Most DIY stores etc sell these systems – when choosing one, check to see if you can get spare parts and replacement filters online! We bought a system from a big store here, and after a year they stopped selling that make, and we can only buy filters, no spare parts! The company don’t have a website, and despite searching everywhere, we cannot find a thing for this make!
2. Shop around – the prices can vary wildly.
3. Check the dimensions of the system and the tank before buying to check it will all fit under your sink.
4. The system requires its own tap, so make sure you have somewhere it can go.
5. Check your water pressure and the minimum and maximums for the systems you’re looking at, and decide whether you will need one with an electric pump (not an option for us, but we do have high water pressure).
On a final note, it is also possible to buy whole house systems, so that all the water out of every tap will have gone through the system – we decided that we didn’t need this, as our water goes through 3 other filters before it gets to the RO system, and having measured the parts per million, it’s perfectly acceptable for washing etc.
Personally, I can’t ever see the day where we don’t have one of these systems!