It is recommended you perform every year a recharge and system cleaning of your reverse osmosis device. If the filters are left as they are for too long, you will experience less water until no water is producted at all.
- The process entails a desalination installation method. Biological matter, bio films, and colloids can pollute osmosis membranes. They absorb into the membrane surface as well as the system’s pipes. This consequently hinders performance and promotes damage.
Set conditions have to be maintained before a reverse osmosis system cleanse:
- The pressure vessel’s gradient value should be decreased 15%
- The permeate’s normalized salt content should be increased 10%
- There should be a 10-15% decrease in the normalized flux value
- This is followed by the use of the cleaning fluid. This liquid needs to be at a particular pH value, including a dissolving of its chemicals. Only then is the cleaning fluid eligible for use in the membrane and its elements.
- The pressure vessels need to be emptied of their feed water content. Other sections too need to be emptied accordingly. The cleaning fluid helps with this process.
- With the drains now host to the cleaning fluid and the feed water forcibly extracted from the osmosis system, this process proceeds by a low-flow re-circulation of the cleaning fluid through the pressure vessels in the system.
- The cleaning liquid needs to soak into the membranes and so the pump is turned off and the system is left to stand as is.
- Following this process, the cleaning fluid previously applied needs to be flushed or pumped out of the reverse osmosis system. The fluid then serves as a prime sample to help with contamination analyses.
- Either quality filtrated water or permeate is used to rinse the whole system.
- Based on typical processual parameters, the desalination installation method is started. If any cleaning fluid remains inside the permeate, the system stands in need of another rinse. This should happen until a good enough permeate quality is achieved.
Anywhere from three to five filter stages are present in a reverse osmosis system. Depending on the model owned, these stages will vary. One of the most recommended chemicals for use in RO systems are water softeners. This helps ensure the removal of 98% sodium in the water content, veritably resulting in better tasting water.
Two of the most stubborn chemicals for RO systems to extricate are magnesium and calcium. The latter two are responsible for rendering water hard (i.e., hard water).
Safety In RO Cleaning
Hazardous chemicals and sensitive components are involved in RO system cleanings. To avoid water filter damages and/or self-injuries, follow these simple guidelines:
- Always select the manufacturer’s recommendations when it comes to pH value(s), chemical list, temperature, dosage, and contact time.
- To increase component lifespan, use the gentlest or mildest chemicals and/or softeners.
- Set up proper and adequate disposal options for the cleaning fluids after they are used in the process.
- Caustics and acids should never mix.
- Before applying the next solution into the RO system, the first cleaning solution needs to be thoroughly rinsed.
- When in doubt, seek the help of a professional or an expert working with the manufacturer.
Tools Used In RO Cleaning
- RO filtered water is imperative for use; not distilled water. You can also use quality soft water. These help with system cleansing and chemical dilution. By following this tip, you prolong the lifespan of the RO system’s components.
- It is not compulsory but useful to keep instruments for monitoring temperature, flow, tank level, and pressure.
Proper RO cleaning includes the use of the following tools:
- RO tank cooler or heater
- RO cleaning tank
- RO tank mixer
- RO cleaning pump possessing ideal cross-flow velocity; to help with optimal membrane cleaning
- RO cleaning cartridge; to help with dirt clearance.
Tips To Keep RO Systems Clean
Bear in mind that the time frame involved in a thorough RO system cleaning are 4-8 hours; the more pollutants present in the system the longer it will take to conclude cleaning.
- The cleaning solution you use in the system reliant on the low-flow recirculation process using filtrated water (to help remove clogging, contaminants, etc.) should preferably remain in the RO system 60 minutes (1 hour) for optimal efficiency.
- If you observe a change in the pH value by more than 0.5 pH units, perform readjustment to attain the required pH value.
- For ideal pH and temperature maintenance during this process, the manufacturer’s instructions are your best bet; via the user manual.
- When dealing with the removal of chemical residues by cleaning the RO skids in the system, use filtered water and apply a low-pressure rinse.
- If the PH cleaning process is intense in nature, it will take anywhere from several hours to a few days for the water content to regain constancy.