The Echo RO™: A Sophisticated Filtration System
Clean drinking water is essential for good health. Ensure pure, crisp, and great-tasting water right at home with the four robust filters in the Echo RO™.
The Echo RO™ is a robust, at-home reverse osmosis water filtration system that gives you truly clean and great-tasting drinking water straight from your faucet. But what makes the Echo RO™ so special? While all reverse osmosis systems have a membrane filter, the Echo RO™ has a complex four-filter system that works to filter out more impurities and give you even cleaner water.
Not sure if having four different filters is necessary? You may be surprised at what’s lurking in your drinking water, and the more you can filter out, the better. Just take a look at the different impurities the Echo RO™ filters out, and you may find yourself wanting to feel more confident about the water you drink at home.
Four-Step Filtration System
The Echo RO™ has a robust and extremely effective four-step filtration system. As water enters the Echo RO™, it first goes through the Spun PP filter, followed by a carbon block filter, then the RO Membrane, and finally the Post Activated Carbon Filter. Each filter is designed to remove specific impurities from your water, and trust us, once you learn exactly what these filters remove from your water, you’re not going to want to drink anything else.
Spun PP Filter
The first filter in the Echo RO™ is the Spun PP Filter. This filter is made of 5-micron polypropylene-10 material, and it is designed to remove large particles, such as suspended solids and rust.
Suspended solids refers to any tiny, solid, waterborne particles that exceed 2 microns in size. (1, 2) These particles remain suspended in water and can contribute to the turbidity (or cloudiness) of water. Most suspended solids are made up of inorganic materials, but it is not uncommon to have organic suspended solids, such as algae and bacteria, in water. (1)
Some of the most common suspended solids in water include (1):
- Bacteria: While not all bacteria are bad, certain types pose a risk of illness or disease.
- Clay: Although clay is not particularly harmful for your health, it does give water a cloudier appearance and can affect the taste and smell of your water.
- Sand: This is typically an issue with well water or in areas with a sandier soil composition.
- Gravel: While you won’t see large clumps of gravel in your water, tiny particles of gravel will make your water appear cloudy, dull, and murky.
- Silt: Silt is not dangerous, but it can change the appearance of your water and make it look unappetizing.
While inorganic suspended solids may generally not pose a health risk to humans, they can create aesthetic issues for your drinking water, as most people do not want to drink murky, cloudy water. Organic suspended solids like algae and bacteria, however, can cause health issues to those who consume them. (1)
Rust typically enters drinking water as iron piping rusts over time. Consuming small amounts of rust does not pose a threat to your health, as oxidized iron is a nutrient that your body needs. (3) In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency states that rusty water is safe to drink. (4)
More than anything, rust can give your water a red or brown color that makes it unappealing. If the amount of rust is excessive, it can also alter the taste of your water. Rusty water can also collect bacteria, which could indicate the presence of harmful pathogens. (3)
Carbon Block Filter
The second filter in the Echo RO™ is an activated carbon block filter made from non-pickled coconut shells and charcoal. This filter is designed to remove chlorine, organics, odor, and turbidity (cloudiness) from your water.
Organic matter in water is natural decay that comes from vegetation or other organic compounds. (5) Most natural organic matter is a mixture of carbon-based compounds that come from decaying plant or animal tissue. (6) While it generally is not a health risk, organic matter can cause your water to smell earthy, musty, fishy, or moldy — and no one wants that. (5)
Adding chlorine to water is a common process used to disinfect drinking water; however, that usually means that there are small residual amounts of chlorine left in your water. Most drinking water facilities use chlorination to create safe, drinkable water that also reduces that chance of spreading disease through the water system. While the amounts of chlorine left in the water will typically not cause immediate harm, continual, daily exposure to small amounts of chlorine can cause some health issues. (7)
Many chlorine compounds are lipophilic, which means that they can bind to fat cells within the body. As a result, they could end up altering the nucleus’ genetic structure within the cell. Although there are no definitive studies to show harmful health effects of consuming chlorine in drinking water, several investigations have found a correlation between chlorinated drinking water and higher cholesterol levels and various types of cancer development. (7)
The health effects of drinking chlorinated water are still undetermined, and some people may be more sensitive to its effects than others. However, one thing most people can agree on is that chlorinated drinking water typically smells and tastes different from untreated water. (8) Removing chlorine from your drinking water can give you the clean water chlorine provides but without the negative side effects.
No one wants to drink smelly water. Even if the odor is not an indication that something bad is lurking beneath the surface, it certainly gives off that impression. Odor in water can originate from various sources, including water contaminated from surface runoff, improperly located or leaky septic systems, trapped organic matter within piping, chlorination, or bacterial growth. (9)
Generally, odors are more of an aesthetic problem, but there are a few specific odors that could indicate something more serious. A rotten egg or sulfurous odor could indicate bacterial growth in your water source. If your water smells musty, earthy, fishy, or moldy, it could be from organic matter, which could also indicate the presence of bacteria. (9)
Activated carbon filters — particularly those made from coconut shells — are great at removing odors and other contaminants from your water. (10) As a result, you can get clean, tasteful water that is odor-free.
Turbidity refers to how clear a liquid is. The higher the turbidity, the less clear the liquid is. (11) Turbidity is caused by the suspension of solid particles in the water, both chemical and biological. (12) These floating particles scatter light as it passes through water, giving it a murky or cloudy appearance. (11)
There are many different things that can cause turbidity in water: runoff, debris, erosion, sediment, organic matter, and wastewater. While particles like silt and sand cause turbidity, they typically are not harmful for your health. However, turbidity can be a good indication that there are pathogens or other hazardous materials in the water. If water is excessively cloudy, it could be due to toxic heavy metals like mercury, lead, and cadmium. (11)
Failing to remove the turbidity from your drinking water can also result in failing to remove harmful pathogens. In fact, reducing a water’s turbidity is a proven indicator that pathogens have been removed and the water is safe to drink. (12) Cloudy or murky water is also unappealing to drink, even if there are no harmful bacteria or chemicals causing it.
Reverse Osmosis Membrane
After water passes through the first two filters of the Echo RO™, it then goes through the Reverse Osmosis Membrane. This filter is designed to remove heavy metals, dissolved matter, bacteria, and salinity from your drinking water.
Bacteria are everywhere, and while we generally think of bacteria as bad, not all of them are. However, when it comes to your drinking water, it is important to ensure that all harmful bacteria are properly removed. Otherwise, you could end up consuming a disease-causing bacteria that makes you sick. (13)
Cases of water-associated diseases are very common in developing countries; however, they are still a major concern and challenge in developed countries like the United States and Europe. (14) Plus, certain groups of people are more susceptible to waterborne pathogens than others, especially infants and children, the elderly, and those with weakened immune systems. (13)
If someone were to consume water with harmful pathogens, they could experience a variety of side effects, including nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, kidney failure, headaches, fatigue, or even death. (13, 15) Depending on the pathogen you consume, you may also develop infectious diseases like hepatitis. (15)
While most total coliform bacteria in our environment are not harmful, there are several bacteria and pathogens of great concern, many of which come from human or animal waste. If water is not properly filtered before it reaches your home, you may end up with a glass of water that contains E. coli, giardia lamblia, Salmonella, Hepatitis A, Legionella pneumophila, or other harmful bacteria. (16) With the Reverse Membrane Filter, you can rest assured that harmful bacteria are filtered out of your water before it reaches your cup.
Heavy metals are defined as elements that are at least five times more dense than water. Some examples of common heavy metals include copper, iron, magnesium, chromium, manganese, cobalt, nickel, zinc, arsenic, selenium, mercury, and lead. While some of these metals are essential nutrients for the human body (like zinc, iron, and magnesium), they can be harmful when consumed in excess. Other heavy metals have no health benefits at all and can be extremely toxic to humans, even when consumed in small amounts. (17, 18)
Heavy metals are naturally found in the Earth’s crust. Over time and through human activity, however, some of these metals have found their way into our public water systems. When humans consume toxic metals, they induce toxicity via reactive oxygen species (ROS). ROS are toxic free radicals that cause oxidative stress and contribute to a variety of health issues.
The human body cannot get rid of toxic metals on its own. If someone is exposed to large amounts of one or more toxic metals at a time, they can experience acute heavy-metal poisoning. More common, however, is chronic exposure when people are exposed to lower amounts of toxic metals over a longer period of time. This type of exposure can result in several different health problems that may have severe symptoms. The development of heavy metal poisoning, however, may be more difficult to discover and diagnose because it develops slowly over time and may have symptoms similar to other diseases. (17)
Because your body cannot get rid of heavy metals, they start to accumulate. While there typically aren’t any immediate effects, the continual buildup of toxic metals can lead to various health issues, including:
- Impaired mental functions
- Impaired central nervous system
- Damage to kidneys, lungs, liver, and other organs
To avoid toxic metals from building up in your body, it’s important to make sure your water is properly filtered before you drink it. The Reverse Osmosis Membrane is a great way to reduce your exposure to harmful heavy metals.
Dissolved matter in water is commonly known as Total Dissolved Solids (TDS), which describes small amounts of both organic matter and inorganic salts in water. (19) TDS in water is mostly made up of dissolved inorganic salt, including sodium, magnesium, potassium, calcium, chlorides, sulfates, and bicarbonates. (20)
Total dissolved solids occur in various water sources, including natural mineral springs, sewage, agricultural and urban runoff, industrial wastewater, road de-icing, and more. (19, 20) While early studies of TDS indicate a health concern, there is little reliable evidence supporting the idea that TDS pose a health risk. (19) However, if there are elevated levels of specific total dissolved solids like arsenic, aluminum, nitrate, and lead, you may experience some health issues. (20)
Generally speaking, however, dissolved matter in drinking water is more of an aesthetic issue. High amounts of total dissolved solids in your water can result in a bitter, salty, or brackish taste. It can also increase your water hardness, which can result in mineral buildup and water spots. (20)
Salinity refers to the amount of dissolved salt in water. While we want salt in the ocean, we don’t want it in our drinking water. Salt often enters waterways by running over rocks that contain soluble minerals, which can cause even “fresh,” landlocked water to become salty. Salty water can also come to the surface as a result of inadequate vegetation removal, industry, and irrigation. (21)
The human body has a delicate balance between sodium and potassium. When balanced, they help the body remove unwanted liquids from the bloodstream. But if we ingest too much salt, the kidneys can’t do their job of properly removing excess water from the bloodstream. As a result, your kidneys can become overwhelmed and experience irreparable damage or failure. Improper fluid removal can also lead to increased blood pressure and heart problems. (21)
While salty water may not cause immediate health effects, continually drinking water with too much salt can combine with the salt from your diet and result in an excess — and that can lead to health issues. Plus, drinking salty water just doesn’t taste good. Reverse osmosis filters are excellent at removing salinity; most result in 98% to 99% removal! With the Reverse Osmosis Membrane in the Echo RO™, you can rest assured that your water has as much salt removed as possible.
Post Activated Carbon T-33 Filter
The final filter in the Echo RO™ is another carbon block filter made of non-pickled coconut shell and charcoal. This filter is designed to remove any remaining chlorine and odor, and help improve the taste of your water.
Cleaner, Safer Drinking Water
Clean water is everything. Not only does it taste better, but it is essential for your health. The Echo RO™ is an incredible at-home filtration system with a robust four-filter system. As a result, you and your family can always get pure, great-tasting water in every glass.