The answer to that question is no, water run through a reverse osmosis system is not the same as distilled water. Both of these waters are purer than tap water, but there is a distinct difference.
To understand the difference between the two types of waters, let’s start from the beginning with how both water purification methods work.
Table of Contents
- What is Reverse Osmosis Water?
- What is Distilled Water?
- Are Reverse Osmosis and Distilled Water The Same?
- The Main Difference Between Reverse Osmosis and Distilled Water
- What are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Distillation?
- How is Distilled Water Made?
- Where is Distilled Water Used?
- Is Distilled Water Safe For Drinking?
- Is Reverse Osmosis Water Considered Distilled?
- Is The Reverse Osmosis Water Safe?
- How are Reverse Osmosis Systems Used
- In Conclusion
What is Reverse Osmosis Water?
Water obtained through reverse osmosis has gone through a purification process that has removed both impurities and chemicals.
There are a series of filters the water passes through, and the reverse osmosis part happens by using pressure to move water through a membrane.The reverse osmosis system removes pollutants such as nitrates, pesticides, sulfates, fluoride, bacteria, arsenic, chlorine, and more from the water.
What is Distilled Water?
Distilled water is steam captured from boiling water-cooled and then returned to its liquid state.
The distilling process removes impurities from the water and leaves hydrogen and oxygen as the main ingredients left in the water.
Are Reverse Osmosis and Distilled Water The Same?
The answer to the question is reverse osmosis and distilled water the same, yes and no. Water that has undergone either the reverse osmosis or the distilled process is purified.
There are, however, two critical differences between water obtained by reverse osmosis and water obtained through distillation.
The Main Difference Between Reverse Osmosis and Distilled Water
The two main differences between reverse osmosis and distilled water are the process and the result.
Using reverse osmosis to purify water in your home is a reasonably straightforward process, and you can install a system yourself.
Distilled water is an arduous and time-consuming process to try to do at home. It would take you approximately 13 hours to distill enough water to make a gallon.
The other difference, and of great importance, is that while both processes give you purified water, only reverse osmosis removes volatile chemicals like chloramines.
Reverse osmosis water is filtered, while distilled water is boiled, the condensation is captured and turned back into water. That means that distilled water does not go through a filtration process.
What are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Distillation?
Advantages of Distilled Water
You can find distilled water at most grocery stores, and it is relatively inexpensive.
Because distilled water does not contain any minerals, it is a favorite to use in steam irons as it will not leave any marks on clothing.
While the average person will not use it this way, many laboratories use distilled water for their experiments.
Perfumes, medicines, and automotive cooling systems rely on distilled water for their processes.
Disadvantages of Distilled Water
Distilled water has a flat taste, which many people do not care for.
It also does not contain any minerals, so a person who drinks distilled water should make sure that they are getting their minerals from their food or vitamins.
The water also tends to pull minerals into the water from any material it touches. Storing distilled water in plastic containers for an extended time will result in the water absorbing trace amounts of plastic.
While the distillation process removes undesirable substances, it does not remove volatile and semi-volatile organic compounds.
How is Distilled Water Made?
Companies produce distilled water by boiling water and then condensing the collected steam back into a liquid. Once packaged, some of it will make its way for sale in grocery stores.
If you had wanted to make your distilled water at your home, it is possible to do it. It is a bit tedious and time-consuming but doable nevertheless.
Here is how to do so:
Place a large pot on a stovetop burner. Add eight cups of water. Place a smaller pot, or bowl, inside the larger pot to catch the condensation. The smaller pot will float on top of the water at this point. The smaller pot needs airflow around it, so make sure it has space around the sides and between the pot’s top.
Turn on the burner and try to keep the temperature between medium and medium-high (180 to 200) degrees Fahrenheit. Keep the heat level steady.
Place the lid for the larger pot upside-down. Flipping the lid allows the condensed water to trickle down to the middle of the lid and drip into the smaller pot.
Fill the inverted lid with ice. This difference in temperature on both sides of the lid will help to speed up the condensation process.
You will probably need to replace the ice twice during this process. Use oven mitts when dumping the melted ice as the lid will be hot.
Now it is a process of waiting and monitoring. It will be about an hour for the water in the larger pot to boil away. Of course, make sure that the pot does not run dry as it could damage your pot.
Water that has dripped down into the smaller pot will be distilled. You should get about a cup and a quarter of distilled water.
To fill a gallon jug with distilled water, it will take about 13 hours of distilling time.
Although not many will want to resort to this lengthy process, it is still possible.
Where is Distilled Water Used?
Distilled water is a standard tool used in the medical field. Hospitals will use the water to sterilize materials and use it for washing hands in the medical arena.
Veterinarians use distilled water for sanitation and during operations. Mechanics will use distilled water in lead car or truck batteries to help keep them from deteriorating.
The cosmetic industry uses distilled water for skincare and makeup products and in the making of perfumes.
Laboratories will use the water for experiments as there are fewer impurities in the water that could ruin an experiment’s results.
Cleaning glassware or windows with distilled water results in a streak-free surface, and so is popular for those tasks.
Is Distilled Water Safe For Drinking?
Under certain circumstances, distilled water is safe for drinking. The water’s taste is bland and flat because of the absence of minerals like calcium, sodium, and magnesium.
Distilled water is just hydrogen and oxygen.
There are certain circumstances under which to consider if it is safe to drink distilled water.
Those are the times when you might be following an exercise routine that deplete your body of minerals lost through sweat.
As you are not getting those minerals from distilled water, you must replace them with supplements or the food you eat.
Drinking distilled water could be dangerous during fasting periods because you would not be replacing any lost minerals.
If you are considering fasting while drinking distilled water, consult with your doctor first.
Is Reverse Osmosis Water Considered Distilled?
Reverse osmosis is a filtration process that forces water through a series of fine membranes, while distillation is the process of boiling water and capturing the condensation.
Merely boiling the water will kill bacteria and microbes, but it will not remove chemicals and other impurities.
While both processes provide clean water, only reverse osmosis is recommended (and practical) for residential purposes.
Reverse osmosis water is not distilled water, and it is not just because the processes are different. It is because distilled water does not remove volatile chemicals like chloramines.
Using a reverse osmosis system will give you water up to 99.9%, devoid of bacteria and volatile chemicals.
Is The Reverse Osmosis Water Safe?
Yes, reverse osmosis water is safe. The U.S. military uses reverse osmosis systems to take saltwater and turn it into freshwater for troops.
People who live in areas with heavy pesticides and herbicides would benefit from using a reverse osmosis system as it would remove those substances from the drinking water.
Recent months have shown that products once depended upon, like bottled water, became hard to acquire when “stay at home” orders came into play across most of the United States.
Having your sources of pure water independent of outside sources become even more critical.
Because of this, the Reverse Osmosis (RO) Systems Market to See Huge Growth by 2026 as consumers strive to become more self-sufficient, especially in the area of clean water, which is essential to daily life.
As with distilled water, reverse osmosis water has had the minerals removed. If you are getting the minerals your body needs from supplements or the food you eat, reverse osmosis water is safe to drink.
If you are not getting the removed minerals from other sources, it is easy to get trace minerals in liquid form from your local health food store or online and add them to the water.
You can also get filters for your reverse osmosis system that adds back calcium and magnesium to the water before it comes out from the dedicated tap.
How are Reverse Osmosis Systems Used
Reverse osmosis systems are more prevalent than distillation systems because the purchaser can install them, and they filter water efficiently.
Distillation systems that can generate enough for home consumption are much more expensive than a reverse osmosis system.
Reverse Osmosis Systems at Home
Reverse osmosis systems like the APEC Supreme Drinking ultimate are within reach of most homeowners.
A distillation system also requires much more electricity to filter one gallon of water than a reverse osmosis system does.
Unfortunately, people in the Michigan city of Flint learned the hard way that decisions made by government officials to deliver safe drinking water were disastrously wrong.
To add insult to injury, it took years and the courts’ intervention to get a resolution of this health crisis.
Reverse Osmosis Systems at The Office
Many companies took note of the Flint Water Crisis and sought to avoid putting their employees in danger of using unsafe drinking water.
They have found that using systems like the SimPure Y5 Instant Hot Water reverse osmosis, which is a countertop system, gives peace of mind for employers and employees alike.
Reverse Osmosis Filtration When Traveling
It is of concern when you are traveling that you have a source of safe water.
One way to assure this when away from home is to bring along an easy to carry water purifier of your own.
Choose a bottle like the Joypur Water Filter that will give you peace of mind when traveling, hiking, or camping.
Philips Water Solutions uses advanced filtering technology to a complete drinking water hydration bottle.
The Philips GoZero Active Bottle allows anyone to enjoy clean water on the go, whether from a tap or natural source.
It is essential no matter where you are to be able to count on having safe, pure water to drink, and carry along bottles are a great solution.
While both distilled water and reverse osmosis water have had impurities removed, the waters are not the same. Distilled water is purified but can still contain volatile chemicals.
Water from a reverse osmosis system has volatile chemicals removed. These chemicals are typically man-made and are common ground-water contaminants.
The volatile chemicals (VOCs) can be petroleum fuels, hydraulic fluids, paint thinners, dry cleaning agents, and other contaminants.
If you want to be sure that the water you are drinking is genuinely purified, a reverse osmosis system will give you that confidence and peace of mind.