Chloramine which also goes by chemical formula NH2CL is made up of chlorine and ammonia. It is used as an alternative to chlorine in disinfecting water. While most cities still use chlorine to treat water, more and more utility companies are adapting chloramine because it does not dissipate by the time water reaches the consumer homes. Let’s be honest, most people don’t have an idea which filtration method removes chloramine because it’s a very stubborn disinfectant. So I did a little research.
Does reverse osmosis remove chloramine from water? Reverse osmosis systems are great at filtering chloramine because they have multiple carbon filters that are good at filtering chloramine. In addition, RO systems have a slow processing speed, therefore, increasing the contact period between water and filters.
Removing Chloramines through Reverse Osmosis System
Chloramine is sometimes referred to in plural (chloramines) because it exists in three different forms depending on the acidity level and the presence of minerals in the water. The most important thing to know about chloramines is that it is made by when you mix chlorine and ammonia.
Therefore, carbon filters that are effective in removing chlorine are also used to remove chloramine. However, chloramine is more stubborn than chlorine, and is, therefore, needs more contact time with the carbon filter to be able to remove it.
The best system for dealing chloramine is an RO working together with a carbon filter. In all most, all case RO system comes with an internally installed carbon filter.
RO units function by having pressure pump force water through a semi-permeable membrane. Contaminants such as salts, minerals, and chemicals are not able to pass the semipermeable membrane; therefore, separating from water. The water that goes to the other side of the membrane is pure water.
By including a carbon filter removes the chloramine molecules. Because the reverse osmosis system works slowly, it gives the carbon filter more time to remove chloramine.
How Reverse Osmosis Filtration works?
In order to understand how reverse osmosis works; you must first study what is osmosis. Osmosis is a process where if you put together two solutions, one salty and the other not salty, and they are separated by a semi-permeable membrane. The non-salty solution moves to the salty solution.
You should know that a semi-permeable membrane is a membrane that has small pores, and it allows molecules and atoms to go through to the other side.
Reverse osmosis is where a membrane that allows the water molecules to pass through, but it does not allow the dissolved contaminants such as minerals to pass through. A reverse osmosis membrane needs pressure to be applied so as to push the molecules through the membrane.
RO systems work by having high-pressure pumps apply pressure on the side of the water that has impurities. As pressure increases, water moles pass through the semi-permeable membrane while contaminants that had been dissolved are trapped on the other side of the membrane.
Challenges of removing chloramines with carbon.
There exist a myth that carbon filters are not able to filter chloramine. The truth is Carbon filtration is the most effective method of removing chloramine from water. However, the challenge is carbon requires more contact time to deal with chloramines. Therefore, you will require a larger carbon filter than those ones which are used to filter chlorine.
Negative effects of exposure to chloramines.
- Damages the skin
Chlorine damages the skin by eroding the top oily layer that protects the skin against coming to direct contact with the elements. Prolong exposure to chloramine results in dry skin, itching, welting blistering, cracking and pigmentation. If you have skin conditions such as dermatitis, chloramine can aggravate the condition. In addition, chloramine can disturb the eyes which results in the eyes looking red and dry.
- Breathing system irritation
Inhalation of chloramine results in respiratory system problems, for example, coughing, and difficulty in breathing, chest problems. Inhalation of chlorine and chloramine fumes has been associated with the development of asthma in kids.
- Damage the digestive system
The introduction of chloramine into the digestive system can result in it damaging the linings of the stomach and the intestines. It can cause problems such as ulcers.
- Kidney problems
The toxicity of ammonia when it gets into the bloodstream has been associated can cause ammonia poisoning. This is why water that is used for dialysis needs to be completely filtered to remove chloramine and chlorine to avoid the toxic chemicals from getting into the bloodstream.
- Chloramine damages home plumbing and installation.
Chloramine makes the water to be acidic and therefore more corrosive. This leads to the pipes becoming corroded. It can also trigger lead poisoning when it corrodes the copper pipes and valves.
- Damages the environment
When chloramine is introduced into the environment, it causes some damages. Studies have shown chloramine kills microorganisms in the environment. In addition, when it gets in water bodies it is harmful to marine life such as fish and amphibians.
Chloramine is made up of chlorine and ammonia. Many municipalities have started using chloramine as a water disinfectant because it is more stable than chlorine. Although chloramines are very effective as a disinfectant, it is very stubborn to filter out. Reverse osmosis systems are great at removing chloramines because, in addition to using the semi-permeable membrane, they also use multiple carbon filters.
Contrary to some myth that carbon filter doesn’t remove chloramine, they do. However, carbon requires more contact time to absorb chloramines. Chloramine, therefore, requires a bigger and better carbon filter to do the work.
Best Shower Filters for Chloramines
Thanks for visiting our site. please check out our latest post in which we review the best shower filter for removing chloramine. In this post, we review 10 of the best shower filter in the market. Best Shower Filter for Chloramine
ABOUT LEON SMITH
Leon is a 27-year-old blogger from Mauritius who is currently studying for a Master’s degree in chemical and processing Engineering at the University of Eldoret in Kenya.