Ok, So What Does Reverse Osmosis Actually Mean?

Gordon Water Systems tea test using a reverse osmosis water filtration system.

If you live in Michigan (the mecca of problematic water here in the U.S.), you’ve likely heard the term Reverse Osmosis…

No, this blog post will not ask you to jump through platform 9 ¾ (shameless Harry Potter joke, don’t mind me) we’re talking about a process we employ to provide you the best drinking water possible. If you’re a customer of ours or have followed along online, you’ve definitely heard or seen us use the term “Reverse Osmosis” (RO for short). Today, we’ll dive into what a reverse osmosis water filtration system really does and the impact it can have on the quality of your water.

Before we start, let’s get real nerdy one more time and get a working definition of Reverse Osmosis. Reverse osmosis (RO) is a water purification process that uses a partially permeable membrane to remove ions, unwanted molecules, and larger particles from drinking water. Reverse osmosis differs from filtration in that the mechanism of fluid flow is by osmosis across a membrane.

Great, some science stuff, but what does that mean?

It means as water is moving through your pipes, it then hits a single (or series) of filters where water is pressurized and pushed through, removing a host of contaminants and leaving you with the best tasting drinking water around. At Gordon Water, we take it (a few) steps further. Look at the graphic below to see our proven process of making clean, safe, and delicious tasting drinking water.

Gordon Water bottled water process

Whether we’re delivering clean, safe bottled water to your door, or professionally installing equipment so you can make it at home, you’re now providing your family with optimal quality water. For those still deciding if RO water is right for them, the next few questions are usually:

Well, how much is this going to cost me?


Does it really make a difference?

The answer to the first question really revolves around two things very specific to you – your budget and the water concerns you might be experiencing. We offer reverse osmosis solutions at price points that will satisfy almost any budget, and we have the largest selection of reverse osmosis water treatment equipment in the state alongside a professional, knowledgeable and friendly staff. We’re here to make sure you get the right equipment and service the first time, and to ensure that your RO system does what it promises.

To answer the latter of the two questions, let’s look at a few things…

Gordon Water Systems tea test using a reverse osmosis water filtration system.


The Tea Test

Hardness, chlorine and contaminants have a significant impact on our water. These items affect color, smell and taste, but they can also adversely affect our bodies. The tea made on the right-hand side is made with regular tap water (definitely city water), while the cup on the left is water from a Gordon reverse osmosis water filtration system.

< I want to take just a moment to acknowledge our ‘sometimes a little too wonderful’ photographer James, for his skills in taking this photo.  I have to be honest with you. The brown color in the cup on the right is significantly darker and gloomier in person, I promise. >

Despite the vivid imagery, you can see the difference. One is mostly brown in tone while the other has the full orangey-pink spectrum you’d expect to see from orange pekoe tea. If we could taste a picture, we could stop here, but we’re still working on the technology.

It’s not a stretch to say if the color of a food or beverage is faded due to imperfect water, the taste and even smell will be way off.

Benefits of consuming RO water

The benefits of consuming RO water don’t start and end here, but here are several of the reasons RO water is the best drinking water…

⦿ Reduces/removes contaminants

  • lead
  • arsenic
  • copper
  • nitrates and nitrites (hexavalent & trivalent)
  • chromium
  • selenium
  • fluoride
  • radium
  • barium
  • total dissolved solids (TDS)

⦿ Significantly reduces salt from softened water
⦿ You’ll stop buying bottled water
⦿ Cheaper and healthier for you AND the environment
⦿ Better for cooking

Whether making pasta, soups or ice cubes – crystal clear, clean, safe water is the best base to let flavors, colors and smells shine through
Reverse osmosis water tastes delicious.

Are there any disadvantages?

The only thing skeptics of reverse osmosis can point to as a disadvantage is that reverse osmosis systems filter out minerals, which they assume are valuable to their health.

In reality, you should be getting the minerals your body needs from the food you eat.

The dissolved mineral found in drinking water is organic, which means that your body has a difficult time absorbing them and sees them as a contaminant to flush out. Ultimately, this negates any potential health benefits.

For those who are concerned about losing out on mineral intake, our K5 Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water System will allow you to reintroduce minerality into your drinking water via a mineral cartridge, but again – most minerals are far more readily absorbed via food consumption and only alter the flavor to the water.

The bottom line is that the impressive benefits of reverse osmosis water far outweigh any minor objections.

For more information on an RO system in your home or office, click on the link below.


Wishing you a happy, healthy, and hydrated summer.