Michael Maardt, 2012
I wrote this page before I made this introduction video, but it's good to read and see it all, if you have the energy :-)
The suggested order regarding optional faucet, connecting hoses and installing the membrane is unimportant. You'll find out when you get started.
The 1/2" adapter shown, is what I call a shower head threa adapter, because it fits the thread, to which we usually connect a shower hose in the bathroom in Denmark. It comes with all the small 3-stage systems.
Many aquarists perform osmosis once a week and then it is convenient to connect this adapter in the bathroom, and let the unit run until you have made your osmosis water. Then you can put the unit away for next week.
You do not have to worry about drying out the unit, if you keep it in normal, Danish indoor residential conditions.
The faucet adapter is attached onto the tap with or without the thread adapter. There is usually no need to tighten it too hard, just enough for it not to leak.
You take the spout off the faucet. The faucet adapter can be attached to a normal Danish faucet.
A threaded adapter is also supplied, so it can also be attached to a tap with an internal thread. Most have external threads on the tap.
The corrugated upper threaded part and the lower part can be rotated/varied with respect to each other. The plastic hose is pulled over the spout and tightened with the double-nut.
When the tilting handle is pointing down, the water is lead 'normally' through the faucet valve and into the sink, and when the handle is tilted 90 degrees, the water passes through the small plastic hose for the osmosis unit. Easier to see in this video.
Decide where the unit should be located when you want to use it. Remember that you can easily take it off after use by disconnecting the adapter from the water tap if you only want to use it every 3 days or once a week.
Cut hoses to length and connect them to the unit
You must take the blue lock ring off to get the hose into the hole/fitting. Use your fingernail or an appropriate tool. Now the little white sliding ring will come loose and you can cram the hose into the hole of the fitting until you feel that it engages. You should NOT be able to pull the hose out now. Pull the tube 1 mm, so you can get the blue locking ring back in place.
BEFORE fitting the membrane, it is a good idea to let some water run through the unit to clean any excess coal dust from the carbon filter. Perhaps the membrane is wrapped in plastic foil inside the mebrane housing/membrane tube to save space during transport.
Take out the membrane. Screw the membrane housing cover back on and connect the hose from the carbon filter to the membrane housing cover. Connect the unit to the water supply and slowly turn on the cold water. Hopefully you will see black water coming out of the membrane housings two openings.
It is the excess carbon dust in the carbon filter coming out. It takes a few seconds. When the water is clean, and you can turn off the water. You have now cleaned the carbon filter and the excess dust will not strain the membrane, which otherwise would have happened. There's no harm in a little coal dust in the membrane, but better to avoid it.
You take the hose shown out to make turning the screw cap easier.
Lubricate the end of the membrane where the two small black O-rings are seated, with paraffin or the like. The two small O-rings are gaskets.
Then you slide the membrane into the container with the two black plastic rings first. You will notice that it slides into place at the bottom of the container and the large black gasket in the other end of the membrane fits tightly. You tighten the lid firmly, but not so tight that you can't get it off again, perhaps using tools. Put the loose hanging hose back on again.
If you bought a metal faucet adapter, connect the water hose by squeezing the hose onto the small spout until it is fully inserted and stops. Then you tighten a nut if possibly. Not all faucet adapters are the same. One type has an almost layered spout, here it is sufficient that the hose covers the spout.
The tilting handle of the tap is tilted 90 degrees with respect to the position which is shown in the picture. Then water passes through the small plastic hose into the osmosis unit.
Turn the water on gently. I have experienced leaks before, so start gently to see and hear the water running through the system. First, membrane and filters must be filled with water, and, if all is well, the waster water will come out through the hose with the valve, and, after 20-40 seconds, the purified water will also start to come out of the second tube.
If you have NOT followed the directions above, you will first see some gray water coming out. That's OK. Let it run for a few minutes until the water is clean. You can measure using the dipstick along the way. Then it's time for clean water. If everything works well, congratulations! You now have much cleaner water, which you can measure with a meter.
When you open the water and turn the adapters rocker button to make clean water, for 30-60 seconds, only waste water will come out. If you measure, you may see that the first deciliter clean water has up to 75ppm, then it will approach 10ppm. Depending on where you live, and the time of day, the water pressure and quality may vary.
Waste water can be collected and used for various purposes.
For hygienic reasons, and to maintain a certain quality of water, it is recommended to change filter and membrane as described. But otherwise: check the water quality with the measuring device. Regarding the durability of the filters and membrane: When stored dry, cool and dark, shelf life is virtually unlimited.
If you are away from home more than 2 weeks, it is recommended to unplug the filter by unscrewing it from the tap. We don't have a lot of experience with this, but when a 3-stage unit was disconnected from the tap for 6 weeks, and then reconnected, it worked flawlessly.
The main thing is that the membrane does not dry out, but that's very unlikely to happen in Northern Europe under our climatic conditions. The more water there is in the system, while is inactive, the better.
I've attached a connector, as shown in the picture, and can thus easily pull the hose off and put it back on again.
If you you bought a 3-stage osmosis unit with a flush valve - the little blue or black swivel faucet. Hopefully, you have also bought a meter so you can keep up an eye on how clean the water is, but even if you haven't:
Some believe it is a good idea to flush the membrane regularly, especially if you have not used the unit for maybe a week, but I can not give precise directions on how often and how much. As with other things in life: experiment!
But I can say that I have had a small unit like yours since March 2011, and only used it for a couple of liters of drinking water daily. I flush it maybe once a month for 10 minutes, but I think that my unit is so well oiled that it is not necessary anymore.
It is normal at first installation that black water comes out. It is excess carbon from the carbon filter which is released. It is quite harmless. Usually it takes around 10 minutes, then your osmosis water should show 20ppm / 40µS or less, depending on your normal tap water.
The membrane housing cover can be screwed on very tightly. If you have a membrane housing key, use it. Remove the plastic from the membrane. It is normal, if there is a few drops of water. This means that the membrane has been tested. It is not absolutely necessary, but is a good idea to lubricate the two small black gaskets, which sit on one end of the membrane, with petroleum jelly or similar.
Insert the membrane with the two O-rings first. This is shown in the introduction video.
Regards, Michael Maardt
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