Kleen-Rite National Sales Manager Gary Frey gets a lot of great questions about RO membranes. These items are highly important in a water-quality centric business such as a car wash, but they need some special care for best results! We talked to Gary to get his scoop on how to get the longest life and best performance out of your filters.
How long should an RO membrane last?
Gary says that the realistic life of a reverse osmosis membrane is 1.5 to 3 years, depending on the nature of your water system processing. It’s important to monitor and check the water entering into your RO system from upstream. This includes your carbon filter, water softener, and the water source (such as your well or municipal water line).
How can I extend the life of my RO membranes?
Creating a preventative maintenance schedule is highly recommended! Monitor your system and log your results daily for consistency. If you see irregularities from day to day, it’ll be easier to troubleshoot and identify problems once you have that baseline in place. You should monitor:
- permeate flow
- concentrate flow
- inlet pressure
- pump pressure
- membrane pressure
- membrane temperature
- permeate TDS
- feed TDS
- feed hardness
Also, change your pre-filter cartridges monthly! Another step you can take is making sure that your carbon filter maintains an appropriate amount of media. Carbon filters remove chlorine from your water. If chlorine levels get too high without appropriate treatment, a new membrane could be destroyed within weeks or days!
Lastly, implement daily water softener checks that assess hardness in, hardness out, remaining capacity, tank online, brine tank checks, and addition of bags.