Skip to content


Reverse Osmosis Systems Waste Water

by Mark Timmons June 01, 2016 4 Comments

I was asked this question today: "RO systems waster water and I decry waste. Why would I want to use an RO system?" My response is simple, because I am partial to RO: Reverse Osmosis is the singular water treatment process that removes the largest spectrum of contaminants.

Translation: If you don't have a reverse osmosis system, you have more contaminants in your water - end of story! You use a toilet to flush your crap away, and that wastes water, why wouldn't you use an RO to flush the crap in your water away? Think about that one for a minute! Really, a typical RO wastes about 3 gallons for every gallon made. Few people use more than a gallon or two a day, so it is insignificant. You flush a lot more water down the toilet! Commercial-grade high efficiency RO systems are up to 80% efficient (at least ours are). That means that for every 4 gallons they make, they waste just one. Small residential reverse osmosis systems are inexpensive and generally waste 3 gallons for every gallon made, but in the scheme of things, how much is that? I hear people say they don't like to waste water while they run their dishwasher or washing machine or flush their toilet. All three of these devices waste 100% of the water they use, but they improve the quality of people's lives and allow them freedom and convenience. Why isn't the water you drink even more important.

Yes, we don't want to waste anything. I get that! So, you could build an outhouse and never waste a gallon of water there, but you still have to wash clothes and dishes, and no matter how you cut it, you are going to have to waste some water. My final question is: If you are going to waste a little water, what better thing to waste it on than the water you drink and the water that sustains your life? Don't be wasteful, but don't be silly either. Drink RO water responsibly... and with a clear conscience! Oh, and by the way, a reverse osmosis system with a permeate pump wastes the least amount of water. Check them out HERE.

Prev Post
Next Post


August 24, 2018 Rita Estes

I’m not sure how you can justify wasting 3 gallons to get 1? The appliances you name do not pour unused water down the drain!
For people that have a septic system how is effected? Doesn’t our bodies require a certain amount of minerals of all kinds?

August 25, 2018 Mark Timmons

My God, we are only talking about making 1 or 2 gallons a day. So you waste 3 to 6. That small amount of water does nothing to a septic system, but clean RO water can have a lasting impact upon your life and health. I can justify it easily for my health. Maybe that’s not as important to you as it is to me.

If you are that concerned about wasting water, take a “sponge bath” – you will waste about 15-20 gallons of water less and for God sakes, don’t buy a pair of jeans. They take about 1,700 gallons of water to make. As a matter of fact, any clothing you buy takes hundreds of gallons of water to make. Ponder that, but don’t get hung up on a gnat, when there are lots of 800 pound gorillas in the room. Use some common sense!

March 02, 2020 Gregory Graham

My 5 stage Aquapurion system with a permeate pump is producing water that has excessive air bubbles in the water! This has been the case for the past few months. I’ve drained the tank, set the bladder pressure to 5.5 PSI, elevated the left side of the sump manifold and tried several of the air purging techniques found on the internet but I can’t correct the problem. Could the pump or some other part of the system be introducing air into the RO process?

March 08, 2020 Mark Timmons

The only thing that passes through an RO membrane more readily than water are dissolved gasses, such as oxygen. If anything introduced air, it would also leak water. Your water supply could contain a lot of dissolved oxygen or if you have a water softener, you could be pulling some air in on the brine cycle. Most people prefer the taste of water with a high oxygen content and the air bubbles you see rapidly dissipate.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.

Someone recently bought a
[time] ago, from [location]

Thanks for subscribing!

This email has been registered!

Shop the look

Choose Options

Edit Option
Back In Stock Notification
this is just a warning
Shopping Cart
0 items