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RO Troubleshooting

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RO Troubleshooting


Reverse osmosis system is the most convenient, technically advanced and effective method of water filtration of today’s time. RO typically filters water by extracting water through a semi-porous membrane, which is rated at 0.0001 micron which is equal to 0.00000004 inch.

This is the only technology having the potential of desalinating salty sea water, converting it into purified drinking water. Non-RO water filters literally use a single activated carbon cartridge for water treatment. They are quite ineffective, and the pore size on these filter media are pretty much bigger, usually 0.5 - 10 micron. They can just filter out rough and bristly elements, sediments and particles only up to their micron rating. Anything finer and most diffused substances are unable to be filtered out. As an outcome, water is way less clean and purified as compared to RO filtration.

Reverse Osmosis Systems (RO) are highly vulnerable to temperature and pressure. RO Membranes are known to perform invariably good under higher pressures. They generate more water, quicker, and of much better quality in high pressure. The majority of issues with RO Systems are an outcome of low pressure.

The consequences of low pressure include water persistently flowing to the drain, lower water production and lesser water volume present in storage tank. In cases where there is low pressure, a booster pump will be needed.

To troubleshoot a poor performing RO System an appropriate measure of the temperature and pressure of water will be needed. This would necessitate the pressure meter to identify exactly what the water pressure is that is fueling the membrane.


Symptoms, Causes and Solution of Reverse Osmosis (RO) Problems

Water Tastes or Smells Peculiar

Bad or strange taste or smell in water could be a cause of fouled membranes or clogged filter cartridges of the reverse osmosis system. If the filter cartridges of RO are blocked, you need to replace them. If you found the membrane to be fouled, get the water tested for TDS. The TDS of purified water is in excess of 80% of the TDS of incoming water when the membrane is fouled, so get it replace too. You are even required to clean and sanitize the canisters and the RO system when you get the RO membrane replaced in every 2 to 3 years.

The possible cause for odd taste and odor in product water could also be exhausted Carbon Post Filter. The problem can be dissolved by Replacing Filter.

Another reason for foul smell and color change in product water could be due to existence of foreign matter in Holding Tank. The ideal solution for this is to flush out, clean and sanitize the Holding Tank or Replace it.

Dissolved gases in feed water of reverse osmosis also leads to bad odor or strange water color. You need to pre-treat feed water to eliminate gasses.

When the Drain water or product water lines are reversed then correction in plumbing is required to rectify smell and color of RO water.


Slow Water Flow/Low Water Production

There may be several causes of low water production and flow in RO. Following are the causes of this:-

  • The fouled membrane or choked filtration cartridges of RO. When the membrane gets fouled, it needs to be replaced. If the filters are blocked, their replacement becomes essential. Filtration cartridges have a validity they do not work for lifetime.
  • Low air pressure inside the RO system’s tank. If the tank of the reverse osmosis is bulky, this literally suggests that water is produced but pressure is not sufficed to push water to the faucet. This may also indicate that tank is faulty.
  • Low feed water pressure; this means when the water pressure in incoming water to a RO unit is less than 40 psi, a booster pump may be required for a RO system. Carbon filter however will be remaining fine even if the pressure is about 10 psi. But before you make this diagnosis make sure both the valve on tank and feed water valve is turned on.
  • Creases in tubes. If tubing is coiled or twirled, straighten or repair them as required.

Milky/Cloudy Water in Reverse Osmosis System

This is primarily caused by air in the RO filter system. This is an ordinary occurrence with the initiation of a RO system. The milky appearance will vanish with normal usage during the initial few days. This condition can also occur after filter changes, but can generally be resolved by draining the tank once or twice.


Noise from Faucet or Drain

A gurgling sound from the drain or air-gap may give ear to during the regeneration cycle.

This condition in a reverse osmosis can occur from the location of the drain saddle, limitation in the Black 3/8” drain tube, or incoming water pressure above 85 psi. Some amount of noise is produced on start-up or after filter changes by air being expelled from the reverse osmosis system. Once the air is ejected out from the unit, this noise should then collapse. A constraint in the drain tube can be caused by waste from the garbage disposal or dishwasher. This tube may be unblocked or cleansed with a wire. If the water pressure is in excess of 85 psi, a pressure restricting valve could be set up on the track feeding the drinking water filtration system.

Inspect the black 3/8” drain tubing to ensure that it is as straight and as short as possible between the drain saddle and the RO faucet. The tube is required to go in a downward direction with no loops or bends.

For problems regarding restriction in the drain tube, unlink the tubing from the drain saddle under the sink. Using an aligned wire coated hanger or equivalent metal wire, snake out the tubing to clear off the restriction.


Water Continually Flowing (Won't Shut Off) in a RO system

A constant running of water to the drain may be a result of low pressure in feed water (below 40 psi), a swirl in the supply line tube, exhausted auto shut-off valve or low air pressure in the system’s tank. If the water pressure is less than 40 psi, a booster pump will be required. If there are swirls or crimps in the tube, get it repaired or straighten them as necessary. If the auto shut-off valve is strained or becoming non-effective, change it. If the tank does not have sufficient amount of pressure when full, it requires be recharging with air or emptying. In some situations, if the feed water pressure is more than 85 psi, you notice the same issue. In such situations, a pressure restricting valve may be needed.


No drinking water comes out

The tank is fairly heavy but when you press the air valve then no water comes out of it. It indicates that the tank bladder is perfectly okay but the holding tank is required to be re-pressurized. Shut off feed water to the RO system. Let the RO faucet to remain open and fill air into the tank from the air valve (use, air compressor, air tank, or bicycle pump) to force the water out of the faucet in a steady stream. Pump air into the tank again when the water starts to slow down to force all water out. When the tank becomes fully empty with no water remaining at all, leave the tank with only around 7 to 9 pounds of air. Close-off the faucet, turn on feed water to system and enable the tank to re-fill again.


Little Amount of RO Water in the Storage Tank

Usually it takes around 4-6 hours to fill the reverse osmosis water storage tank. User needs to keep in mind that the low incoming water pressure or temperature can awfully decrease the production rate. For considerations of High/Low pressure in Tank; vacate the water storage tank completely. Set the tank air pressure around 5-7 psi. Use a Digital Air Gauge for optimum results. Replace pre-filters and RO membrane in case of clogging and Fouled membrane. These typically last for 3-4 years.


Leaks from Filter Bowls or Unit

The Leakage can be caused by loose/improper fittings, a missing, impaired, or inaccurately seated O-Ring, or a clumsily inserted plastic ferrule over the brass fitting. If the fittings are not appropriately tightened, then properly re-tighten the fittings.

If the O-ring is damaged or missing then contact the dealer for a replacement. In case of the O-Ring out of round, make sure the O-Ring is adequately lubricated and injected into its housing prior to replacing the housing.
If the plastic ferrules are positioned backwards, take off and re-position them, ensuring that the tapered end points toward the valve.


Troubleshooting High TDS

  • Mechanical Damage to Permeate Tube
  • Membrane Surface Abrasion
  • Leaking O-Ring
  • Permeate Backpressure
  • Hydraulic Shock
  • Chlorine Destruction
  • Telescoping Due to higher Pressure Drop

Troubleshooting Low Permeate Flow

  • Aged Preservative
  • Biological Fouling
  • Colloidal Fouling
  • Metal Oxide Fouling
  • Membrane Dry Out
  • Scaling

Troubleshooting Low Salt Passage

  • Organic Fouling
  • Compaction

Technical Support and Advice

Perfect Healthcare operates closely with a diverse array of global corporations, intellectually uniting advanced reverse osmosis treatment technologies with practical solutions to dissolve complex problems.

If you are on town water, your domestic water should meet the very strict State standards for purity. However, many city and regions use ground water also known as well water which is high in salts and minerals. This can typically impact taste. Mostly the municipally treated water is chlorinated, and this can also literally impact the taste and develop strange odors and color in the water. If you are on a private spring or well, you must get your water tested, and if you seek an expert’s advice then you can also contact our technical staff for guidance on selecting the best RO for your water chemistry.

If you have any other issue or an RO failure that you would like to discuss, seek solution or you need technical support and assistance; please contact one of our specialist advisors using our Technical support page @ purifiersindia.co.in or contact us via phone or

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contact@purifiersindia.co.in
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Value for Reverse Osmosis Filtration System over Failures

The taste and color of product water will be changed while using RO filtration system. The reverse osmosis converts the salty water to tasty and clean water and will also eliminate any un-natural color or smells present.

Sparkling, safe and cleaner drinking water is possibly the most noticeable aspect of RO drinking water. Since there is no or little for modification in the RO-treated water's natural state, the flavor of drink can come though without any "chemical" taste. Brewed items such as coffee, soup, tea or beer may have a robust and richer flavor, and powdered drinks and fruit juices combined with RO-treated water may taste and smell better, too. Even ice cubes can appear to be real crystal clear with RO purified water. In addition, because of the low mineral content in RO purified water, the domestic appliances like the steam irons, steamers and humidifiers can keep working efficiently and longer.

RO water is completely different, safe and tastier from distilled water. The Distilled water is only boiled, and steam condensed for drinking water. Distilled water practically consists of no minerals, nutrients or dissolved solids, whereas RO water does comprises of trace amount of minerals and salts. Many users also described RO as tasting and smelling better than distilled water, which can taste flat. Distillers use electric power supply, whereas reverse osmosis functions upon line pressure from the household plumbing (except for industrial and commercial reverse osmosis systems, which use pumps) and need no electricity.

An RO system can effectively treat and remove a variety of contaminants including: Arsenic, Asbestos, Aluminum, Atrazine, Benzene, Copper, Cyanide, Chlorides, Chlorine, Cryptosporidium, Fluoride, Mercury, Lead, Nitrates, Radon, Radium, Sodium, Sulfide, Silver, Trihalomethanes and Trichloroethylene.

RO systems are quite competent in eradication of various biological contaminants such as Giardi and Cryptosporidium. The pore size of the reverse osmosis membrane coupled with the amount of pressure applied to the water will usually determine the rate of depletion of such contaminants. The WQA (Water Quality Association) prudence, however, that while reverse osmosis membranes are dependable for treatment of a wide array of health contaminants, creation considerations like the manufacturing defects or tiny seal leaks may block a unit from providing guaranteed protection against biological contaminants for buyers drinking water systems. Therefore, WQA submits that absolute disinfectant (a deduction of contaminants higher than 99.9 percent) is ensured with certified and cyst-rated products and post-disinfection apparatus like UV ultraviolet light.

Beyond reducing biological and health-related contaminants, reverse osmosis system also reduced the amount of lead present in water.

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