Reverse osmosis does wonders when it comes to removing harmful chemicals and substances. Aside from removing PFAs, reverse osmosis may or may not be effective in getting rid of chlorine too.
This is because it depends on the amount of chlorine that is present on the substance. For example, an average home reverse osmosis filter may not be able to get rid of most chlorine that has been in contact with the solution for too long.
And this is why there are a plethora of costlier reverse osmosis filtration systems that are used by manufacturers and industries.
However, there are still instances that a small amount of chlorine will pass through the filter. This is evident in damaged RO membranes that have aged over time.
It’s Not That Bad After All
The effectiveness of getting rid of chlorine using reverse osmosis may fluctuate, but it isn’t actually that bad. The ratio between the removed and unremoved chlorine is so small that an average user won’t even notice.
A prime example is using reverse osmosis to remove chlorine from water. Even when there is still a little amount of chlorine left, the water is still safe to drink without any noticeable flavor changes.
But it’s still ideal to use other methods to completely get rid of chlorine from water. This includes activated carbon treatment such as Granular Activated Carbon (GAC) or Powdered Activated Carbon (PAC).
These two methods may seem different from reverse osmosis, but its effectiveness in removing chlorine is much better overall.
So if you’re looking for clean and safer water, don’t only settle for water companies that use reverse osmosis alone, but also activated carbon methods as well.
Why Chlorine Is A Big Deal In Water Treatment
As harmful it may sound, chlorine is mostly used to treat water in public water supplies. Chlorine helps get rid of viruses, bacterias, and any harmful substances that are dangerous for our health.
The prime example would be public swimming pools, where the water sometimes feels like chlorine.
Keep in mind that pool water comes from lakes, rivers, or even groundwater where microorganisms are thriving. That’s why it is very important to perform water chlorination to these public pools to make it safer to swim and play around.
However, this also applies to drinking water too. This is because pathogens are often found in these drinking waters that can cause life-threatening diseases.
There are myriads of ways to clear out these pathogens from drinking water, but chlorination is one of the most effective and most used among all of them.
But too much chlorine can be dangerous to one’s health. And this is why reverse osmosis, as well as activated carbons that we mentioned earlier, is used to get rid of this chemical. Though keep in mind that the water chlorination process doesn’t have to be pure chlorine.
Oftentimes, companies will use substances mixed with a bit of chlorine depending on the water’s pH levels and conditions. This includes:
- Chlorine gas – A toxic and deadly chlorine type that has a mixed yellow and green color. It is toxic enough to cause health complications, mainly in the respiratory area.
- Sodium hypochlorite – This chlorine type is used as a disinfectant. It has a lighter color compared to chlorine gas and needs to be stored properly to prevent its effect from deteriorating over time.
What Other Substances Does Reverse Osmosis Remove?
Chlorine removal may be a hit or miss using reverse osmosis, but it is still effective in removing other harmful substances as well. This includes Polyfluorinated substances (PFAS), copper, lead, sodium, and metal ions.
Reverse osmosis also works in reducing (not completely removing) substances such as magnesium, nitrate, phosphorus, arsenic, and fluoride. For years, inventors have developed a plethora of reverse osmosis filtration systems that come at different prices.
There are household-friendly ones that are easy to operate and are mainly used to filter water. And there are others used by companies which are big yet complicated to operate. And keep in mind that reverse osmosis is quite a lengthy process compared to other filtration methods.
The way it works is by filtering out bad bacteria and other substances using a semi-permeable membrane.
As the osmosis process turns out naturally, reverse osmosis needs to be applied by force for it to be effective. Real-world examples include using a food drainer while cooking, or a door/window screen where you can still feel the wind minus the dirt coming from outside.
Other Uses of Chlorine
As mentioned earlier, chlorine is mainly used as a water treatment to remove pathogens. However, it also has other uses as well. It can be used as a blech for clothes to get rid of hard-to-remove stains.
It is also a main compound in making antiseptics, wall paints, and insecticides too. But using chlorine needs to be handled with care because of its poisonous nature. Its smell alone is uneasy for the nose.
Back in the first world war era, chlorine was used as a weapon against enemies because of its poisonous properties. It can also cause liver damage and may spread to your bodies other internal organs if you drank it by accident.
Reverse Osmosis Is The Future Of Filtration
Even though reverse osmosis doesn’t completely remove chlorine, it is still widely used by manufacturers and even homeowners in today’s time. There are a wide variety of reverse osmosis devices that you can buy today, and most of them are used as a water filter.
Though keep in mind that its price may cost you like royalties. However, it’s a good lifetime investment, especially if you rely on tap water in your daily needs.
If you are an owner of a company and are making consumer products, then you definitely need a reverse osmosis device too.
Factory-grade reverses osmosis devices are bigger, bulkier, and costlier compared to the ones for home use. But it is an essential piece of equipment to clear your products from harmful substances such as bad bacteria, lead, PFAS, chlorine, and the like.