It is imperative that drinking water is free of chemical contaminants, viruses and bacteria, and is therefore as pure as possible. In simplest terms, while there is good and bad bacteria, the bacteria that is found in water tends to be pathogenic, which means they can cause serious health concerns. Examples of these bacteria include salmonella and E.coli.

Reverse osmosis is a water purification method that helps to remove various impurities from water. When it comes to the topic of reverse osmosis systems, people are often left wondering what types of contaminants, exactly, the system can remove. That brings us to question of whether reverse osmosis can remove bacteria. This is a particularly relevant and far-reaching question, as reverse osmosis is one of the water purification methods that is used almost everywhere in the world.

Can Reverse Osmosis Remove Bacteria in Water?

The short answer to this question is yes, reverse osmosis will remove bacteria from water. Reverse osmosis systems work by using a process that reverses the flow of water so that water passes from a more concentrated solution to a diluted solution. This occurs through a semi-permanent membrane.

How Does Reverse Osmosis Work?

Reverse osmosis systems have multiple stages, each of which acts as a separate form of filtration.

The first stage filters out sediment so the water is free of any solids. This stage does not affect the bacteria in the water in any way.

The second stage does not remove bacteria either. Instead, it removes things like chlorine, lead, pesticides and herbicides, which helps get the water tasting and smelling clean and pure.

The third stage is where bacteria removal occurs, as a membrane is used that only water molecules can pass through, whereas larger molecules, those which make up viruses and bacteria, are filtered out.

It’s also important to note that if the membrane is not filtering properly, it’s possible some small amount of bacteria could get through and then multiply on the other side. If this is the case, repairs would certainly be in order to maintain a bacteria-free water supply.

If you are need of a drinking water filtration system, Imagine Plumbing offers premium water filtration systems. They are also considered to be among Alberta’s premier, professional plumbers. Contact us today for more information.