RO vs UV vs UF Water Purifier – You’ve reached this article. That means you are trying to understand the differences between these three types of water purifiers, their functions, advantages and disadvantages. And you are trying to figure out which one is right for you.
You may know that 71% of the earth’s surface is surrounded by water. And 96.5% of the world’s water is found in the oceans which is unfit for drinking. Of the remaining 3.5%, more than 2.5% of water exists as ice, clouds and steam. Less than 1% of water is available for use by humans, animals and plants as waterfalls, lakes and groundwater.
We human beings are polluting this minimum amount of usable water by our irresponsible and reckless actions. Groundwater pollution is one of the major problems in India at the moment. Now the natural water we get in wells, rivers and reservoirs are no longer pure. The water pollution has increased so much that even rainwater is being polluted, which is often known as acid rain.
In almost every city and suburban area in India, municipal corporations try to provide clean water to the residents through the supply network. But unfortunately, due to leakage in the pipeline and lack of proper maintenance most of the time, they fail to supply 100 % pure water to the residents.
In this situation, you must purify the water before drinking. When it comes to water purifiers, you can find three types of water purifiers in the Indian market. These are UF, UV and RO water purifiers respectively. Each of them has some advantages and disadvantages.
In order to choose the right water purifier for you, it is important that you have some knowledge about water purification technology. Since this is not a technical article, we will not discuss too much technology here. Instead, to make things easier, we will discuss what kind of water purifier is needed in which case and its advantages and disadvantages.
RO vs UV vs UF Water Purifiers
Let’s have a look at the table below to understand the primary difference between RO vs UV vs UF water purifier.
RO Purifier UV Purifier UF Purifier Electricity Needed Kill Bacteria and Viruses Remove dead bodies of Bacteria and Viruses Remove dissolved Toxic Elements Works with Dirty Turbid Water
1. RO (Reverse Osmosis) water purifier
RO water purifiers are devices that remove impurities from water by reverse osmosis technology. These types of water purifiers use a partially permeable membrane to purify the water. When water passes through this membrane, all the contaminants are removed.
When water is purified in this way, dissolved or undissolved particles, no matter how small in size, remain on the other side of the membrane. On the other hand, only purified water can pass towards the user.
The RO purifier comes in the category of the most reliable water purifier. It is worth mentioning here that only RO technology is capable of removing dissolved contaminants from water.
How does an RO purifier work?
You may remember that we studied osmosis in chemistry and biology classes.
Osmosis is a natural process where fluid moves from a low-density region to a high-density area when separated by a semi-permeable membrane.
Reverse osmosis is the exact opposite of osmosis. In this case, the fluid is transferred from the region of higher density to the area of lower density by applying pressure.
We already know that RO purifier filters water through a semi-permeable membrane. This membrane has numerous tiny pores that are no larger than 0.0006 microns in size. Only water molecules can pass through these small pores, and other contaminants in the water cannot pass through these pores due to their large size. So only pure water is supplied to the other side of the membrane.
This method removes all contaminants, be it mud, salt, dust, viruses or bacteria. Even molecules of dissolved toxins such as lead, arsenic, cadmium or fluoride are removed from the water by this method. That is why RO water purifier is considered as the most reliable water purifier in the world.
At this stage, you realize how thoroughly an RO purifier cleans almost all minerals from water. Undoubtedly, healthy minerals have to be sacrificed in this case. Modern RO water purifiers come with a mineralizer to fill this gap. The mineralizer restores healthy minerals into the water. This way, the RO purifier gives you pure and healthy drinking water.
Recommended Reading: RO (Reverse Osmosis) Water Purifiers – Pros and Cons
2. UV (Ultraviolet) water purifier
UV water purifiers are devices that disinfect water with UV(ultraviolet) rays. This type of water purifier has an ultra-violet lamp inside the chamber that emits a germicidal wavelength. When water flows around it, UV rays kill harmful germs like viruses, bacteria etc. present in the water.
UV is a highly effective method that can disinfect water up to 99.9%
How does a UV water purifier work?
These types of water purifiers have a UV lamp attached to the chamber. When water flows through this chamber, pathogens, such as bacteria and viruses, take a deadly dose of UV rays that destroy the DNA of their cells and kills them.
Although the dead bodies of germs remain in the water, they can no longer reproduce and do us no further harm. Thus UV water purifier ensures 99.9% sterile drinking water.
Recommended Reading: UV (Ultra-Violet) Water Purifiers – Pros and Cons
3. UF (Ultra-filtration) water purifier
UF is a basic water purification technology that is somewhat similar to RO water purification technology. However, it is not as advanced as RO technology.
Like RO purifiers, UF water purifiers also work based on semi-permeable membranes. This membrane helps to remove contaminants from water molecules.
In this case, the hydrostatic force causes water to apply pressure to the membrane wall. This membrane has tiny holes through which water molecules can pass. But microscopic components and germs cannot pass through these pores due to their large size. Therefore, these pollutants separated from the water. That is how a UF water purifier provides you with purified drinking water.
This technology can successfully remove bacteria, viruses and turbidity from water.
Significantly, this whole purification process is natural. In this case, no chemicals are used, and no electricity is required. It also does not change the natural taste of the water. Moreover, the cost of purifying water in this method is very low as compared to other technologies.
Considering all these qualities, you may think that UF is probably the best technology for water purification. But it’s wrong, there’s a big drawback.
Groundwater pollution has increased dramatically in the last few years in various states of India. Excessive use of pesticides and uncontrolled industrial waste have led to heavy metal contamination in the water. Arsenic, lead, cadmium, mercury are some of them. All of these toxins are dissolved in water, which can lead to life-threatening diseases, such as cancer.
The biggest problem with UF water purifiers is that it fails to remove toxins dissolved in water such as arsenic, lead, cadmium, mercury, etc.
Recommended Reading: UF (Ultra-Filtration) Water Purifier – Pros and Cons
RO vs UV vs UF – What type of water purifier do you need?
Before buying the best water purifier, you should consider a few essential factors such as your drinking water source, type of contamination, TDS value, etc. In addition, you should have an idea about safe drinking water guideline.
We hope that at this stage, you have a clear idea of the different types of water purification technologies, the basic differences between them and the different types of impurities in drinking water.
Now the question is, what kind of filter is suitable for your home?
1) First of all, you should get a TDS test of the water in your home. If you do not know how to do this, then you can read this article – How to check TDS of water.
Let’s have a look at the table below to understand the impurities and the ideal water purifier for that situation.
|TDS Value||Turbid water||Bacteria||Ideal purifier|
|Below 300 PPM||UV|
|Below 300 PPM||UV+UF |
|Over 300 ppm||RO water Purifier|
+ TDS controller
|Over 300 ppm||RO+UV+UF purifier |
+ TDS controller
2) If there is any industry in your area, you should have a chemical test of your water to know the level of chemical impurities.
3) If you have any confusion, you should always choose the best water purifier with RO + UV + UF technology. These types of modern filters are able to provide you with safe drinking water by removing all kinds of impurities.
Recommended Reading: 9 Best Water Purifiers In India 2022
- UV (Ultra-Violet) Water Purifiers – Pros and Cons
- RO (Reverse Osmosis) Water Purifiers – Pros and Cons
- how to check TDS of water
- Safe Drinking Water Guidelines in India
- A Brief Overview of Groundwater Pollution in India
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