[Explainer]All about reverse osmoisis (RO) home water filters for your home in Malta

If you are thinking about buying a reverse osmoisis home water filter system in Malta then this article will tell you all about how it works, the pros and cons and ideas for alternative systems.

What is reverse osmoisis?

Reverse osmoisis is a process for water filtration that is designe to remove salts in the water and reduce or remove specific chemicals and other material in order to purify water for drinking and general use.

Reverse osmoisis removes nitrates, sulfates, heavy metals, and fluoride which is good, but it also removes healthy minerals such as magnesium, calcium, pottassium and sodium which is often what one might look for when buying bottled mineral water.

How does reverse osmoisis work?

Reverse osmoisis used water pressure to push water through a semi-permeable membrane which allows smaller water molecules to pass through but prevents larger ones, such as salt, from passing through. It is filtering the larger molecules out from the final result.

Does reverse osmoisis remove chlorine?

Reverse osmoisis does not remove chlorine from drinking water, the best way to do that is with an activated carbon block filter, which are almost always another component in the reverse osmois home filtration systems found in Malta.

The activated carbon filter removes over 70+ contaminants including herbacides, pesticides, chlorine bi-products pharmaceuticals and more.

What are the disadvantages of reverse osmoisis water filters in Malta?

Historically reverse osmoisis have become the standard for domestic water filtration systems in Malta and there exists a whole industry servicing the demand for clean drinking water for your tap.

However, there are several disadvantages of the system which we can sumarise as follows:

  • High investment - arround €300 to €500 euros
  • Wastes as much as 6X the water produced for drinking due to the low pressure environment in a domestic installation which cannot replicate the efficiency of the larger industrial reverse osmoisis plants in Malta (Wikipedia)
  • Requires professional maintenance to keep the system running
  • Involves annual maintenance costs in addition to materials
  • It is unwise to leave the system for long perios without use as water collected in the tank is no longer chlorinated and may become cntaminated.
  • The process removes healthy minerals
  • The systems contain multiple components such as pressure tanks, RO modules, membranes, valves, pipes and a separate tap.
  • Its quite a complex set up requiring professional installation watch this video to learn more about what makes up an RO systems and how to install it

Is the water from reverse osmoisis in Malta healthy to drink?

The WHO has raised concerns about demineralised water, such as that from reverse osmoisis systems, concluding that there is sufficient evidence that drinking water low in calcium or magnesium has negative health consequenes.

Is there an alternative to home reverse osmoisis water filters in Malta?

The tap water in Malta is already fit for human consumption and meets EU directive standards therefore the focus is on improving the taste of the water and removing possible contaminants such as chlorine, THMs, microplastics and heavy metals.

The most efficient way to do this is with an activated carbon water filtration block which has the following advantages over reverse osmoisis:

  • Easy to install by anyone
  • No maintenance, just replace filter cartridges
  • Simple system, few components
  • Low investment
  • Leaves healthy minerals in the drinking water
  • No water is wasted in the filtration process
  • Low risk of post filtration contamination

TAPP 2 TWIST is the only sustainable activated carbon tap water filter in Malta.


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