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dynamo 12-26-2011 12:33 PM

Reverse Osmosis system for home -- Costco "Watts" model
Happy holidays all!
Looking to install a reverse osmosis water purification system under our kitchen sink for drinking and cooking water.

A friend recommended the Watts system he purchased at Costco Canada.
I am looking online and have found 3 systems but am unclear on some things.
Perhaps others have experiences to share?

4-stage ($234.99) here:*&topnav=

5-stage ($169.99) system for less $$?*&topnav=
What on earth exactly is a "Chrome Air Gap Faucet"?

Of course, I figure you get what you pay for and this is the most $$, a so-called "zero waste" system for $314.99:*&topnav=
Doesn't specify how many filters, I'm guessing 7 by looking at the replacement filters here:
This "zero waste system claims testing by "NSF (The Public Health and Safety Company). Who on earth are they, anyway?
Also, claims "Eliminates the need for air-gap faucets".
Does this mean we use our regular faucet?

Very confusing for a first timer.
I might add, we had a quote from a local bottled water supplier come in at $2000.
Included "lead-free faucet" and 10 year warranty on everything but cartridges (LOL).
Are there still faucets with lead in them, readily available for purchase?
The salesperson tested our tap water at 220 ppm or something like that of particulates.
He then left a gallon that I noticed said "steam distilled ozonized" or something like that, the same thing stated on the bottles I get from the grocery store on sale for 99 cents, usually $1.49/gallon (4 litres).

I will ask him to come back and compare our store bought distilled water versus our Brita pitcher versus our neighbours whole-house water purification system.

Anyway, long story short, as I search the forums for similar questions, any feedback appreciated.
Cheers dynamo.

dynamo 12-26-2011 12:44 PM

Here's a couple of negative reader comments, food for thought, on the 7-stage "zero waste" (most expensive) model:

Waste of money
"Bought days ago, took me 2 days plumbing and fixing breaks. Returned right away. In my opinion, zero waste will waste your electricity on the pump, rather than the water itself. Since it's high pressure pump push the generated hot water back to your hot water supply, and this is the exact reason why my tube broke many times.It also pushes my hot water to cold water tube, and caused disaster twice in 1 hour. Called customer service, they told me the hot water valve must be at least 25 feet from the hot water tank."

Poor Design
Cons: wastes hot water, contaminates cold water lines with unfilterd water
"The system is designed to push cold, contaminated and unfiltered water into the hot water system and tank. If you don't have one way valve on the HW tank's cold water inlet, you'll notice that the hot water from the tank backs up to the clod water lines. Eventually it will enter the filter assembly and will damage the RO membrane.
In smaller homes, it will result in hot water and RO filter (discharge) water circulating through water lines including your shower, and general use water."

dynamo 12-28-2011 08:45 AM

Anyone know where I can get our tap water tested in SW Ontario?
A full diagnostic test showing what exactly is in our water?
Thanks for any ideas.

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