Okay! Water is a basic essential for all of us to survive, and we do need it at regular intervals in a day. But, does your water meet the basic hygiene level? or are you using the right water purifier? Today, you will learn different types of water purification methods available and the main differences between RO, UV, and UF.
I know, as well as you are aware that normal drinking water comprises numerous impurities and micro-organisms. Some of the usual contaminants found in your water are, barium, arsenic, lead, fluoride, silver, and more. These are just a few, and I would not want to scare you by naming all of them.
Nevertheless, it can’t be seen by the naked eye, but you can be smart by implementing different water filtration methods at your workplace or home.
There are many ways to purify your drinking water and keep yourself safe, such as –
- Reverse Osmosis (RO)
- Ultraviolet (UV)
- Ultrafiltration (UF)
- Sediment Filtration
- Activated Carbon
But, we will be discussing the 3 different methods of water purification that are widely popularly in India.
Are you ready? Let’s get started:
3 different types of water purification methods
1. Reverse Osmosis (RO)
What is RO?
Reverse osmosis comes under the category of one of the most common water purification methods used. It is indeed effective in improving the look of the water you’re drinking as well as how it tastes and the smell of it. Most households use reverse osmosis these days, and I can tell you by my personal experience while visiting people.
Moreover, it is well known for making it easier to drink seawater.
How RO water purifier works?
During the process of reverse osmosis, numerous impurities are removed from water by applying more pressure as compared to the osmotic pressure, and water getting pushed via a special filter which lets the water molecules pass through and not let impurities and dissolved salts pass through it.
To make it easier for you to understand, the solute or the dissolved salts, bacteria are retained on one side of the special filter (semi-permeable membrane), while the pure water is allowed to pass through. Additionally, reverse osmosis is used for the production of drinking water as well as for industrial use.
Advantages of RO:
- There is hardly any maintenance required.
- The semi-permeable membrane (Special Filter) does not let ion particles enter inside.
- Low on cost and it can save you bucks from buying packaged mineral water. Especially when you can have crystal clear water by having a reverse osmosis water purifier at the comfort of your home.
Disadvantages of RO:
- Installation and everything can be quite costly. Additionally, a lot of water is wasted in a significant way.
- The process of reverse osmosis is slow in a way as it can take around a couple or more hours for filtering a certain amount of water.
- Clogging is one of the main problems that a RO system faces. There needs to be a check of the RO system water purifier to stop clogging caused by chlorine.
2. Ultraviolet (UV)
What is UV?
Water purification methods in the form of ultraviolet technology is efficient in killing micro-organisms from your drinking water and keeps you healthy.
The ultraviolet technology has different variants in the form of a lamp and it disinfects the water consisting of micro-organisms passing through its chamber with the help of heat.
How UV water purifier works?
Water passes via a chamber that comprises a big ultraviolet light source. The ultraviolet light present in it acts as a hindrance and a sterilizing agent for the micro-organisms present inside the water and kills them instantly with its heat source. The UV light can be extremely hot and it certainly helps make your water clearer and keep bacteria and viruses away.
Advantages of UV:
- Kills parasites, bacteria, and other micro-organisms present in water.
- Cost of operating is on the lower side.
- The disinfection process is very reliable.
Disadvantages of UV:
- You’ll have to rely on electricity to keep its work going on.
- Another water purification method would be required to remove all the contaminants from water. It mostly kills micro-organisms but not other impurities present in water.
- The UV lamp needs to be monitored most of the time.
3. Ultrafiltration/Gravity Based (UF)
What is UF?
Ultrafiltration is a process in which hydrostatic pressure is applied for water to pass through a semi-permeable membrane or filter. If I had to sum it up, it is very much like reverse osmosis, excluding the fact that the size of the molecules ultrafiltration retains is somewhat different. Additionally, the pore size of its membrane is about 106 Daltons and it can remove particles of about 1.0 microns from water.
How UF water purifier works?
The process of (UF) or ultrafiltration works in such a way that pressure is applied to force water to pass through a special filter membrane in which contaminants and suspended solids are held back or retained at one corner, and water along with minute solutes pass through the membrane to turn it into drinking water.
Thus, letting you have some clean drinking water.
Advantages of UF:
- Removes impurities like viruses and bacteria.
- Holds on to essential minerals in the water, unlike other water purifying methods.
- It is eco-friendly and having a home-based ultrafiltration system means that there would be fewer amount of water bottles scattered around places, eventually helping the environment.
Disadvantages of UF:
- It is sensitive to nitric acid and sulphuric acid, which are considered to be oxidative chemicals.
- Disappointing thing about ultrafiltration is that the odour of the water won’t change after the process as well.
- It won’t be able to remove the dissolved salts in the water.
You may also like – Best Water Purifier Brands In India
RO vs UV vs UF – what type of water purification method you need?
|RO Water Purifier||UV Water Purifier||UF Water Purifier|
|Ideal for TDS more than 500 ppm||Suitable for TDS less than 500 ppm as it has no TDS removal technology||No TDS removal|
|Needs electricity for filtration||It also needs electricity for filtration||Needs no electricity|
|Filters out germs, microbes, & viruses||Kills germs, microbes, & viruses but doesn’t remove them||Filters out germs, microbes, & viruses|
|Needs high water pressure and uses additional pump||Can with normal tap water pressure||Can with normal tap water pressure|
|Waste lot of water||No water is wasted||No water is wasted|
|Can be more expensive||Less expensive than RO water purifier||Less expensive|
|Enhances the colour & taste of water||No improvement in water colour & taste||No improvement in water colour & taste|
|Removes visible impurities with the pre-filtration technology||Needs normal clear water to filter||Works with dirty or muddy water|
So, I have listed different types of water purification process in the form of reverse osmosis, ultraviolet, and ultrafiltration. If I have to go and pick a winner out of the three, that would not be an ideal thing to do. Since all of them have unique capabilities, each one of them fills in a gap for a certain need.
Talking about water purification types, ultrafiltration has an edge over reverse osmosis with bigger pores, while ultraviolet throws away micro-organisms by its heat applied.
So, which according to you seems the best water purification method?
Further reading: The Best Water Purifier In India