Cleaning with RO/DI water

Feb 8, 2016
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What effect if any would be seen from using reverse osmosis deionized water to make up my pre spray or in my solution tank ?
 

old tech

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Use of this kind of stripped water is acidic. Effects on your equipment will be bad (fittings will break down). When using soft water you will get the enhanced effects of your chemicals both low and high pH styles.
 
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SAA

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It would be wonderful for the removal of soil. Pure water has no mineral content so it is the cleanest water you can use. It is true that it is aggressive with anything it goes through, due to picking up mineral content but it would take a long time to make a noticeable impact. Hard water and mineral content is also very hard on fittings and hoses and heaters and is more of a concern than pure water would be.

I used it for years and one real advantage was on area rugs. It also uses a lot less detergents making it easier to rinse out the carpet or rug. Negligible as for as being negative about any form of it. It is cleaning with very clean water whereas some areas with hard water is the same as cleaning with 'dirty' water in the sense of mineral content and the way it will distract the detergent molecules away from the soil in the carpet or rugs.

SAA
 
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After doing a little more reading, it appears that bypassing the DI component of the filter( I have a RO/DI unit for saltwater aquarium purposes) will result in "soft water" without stripping it down to pure water. I live in an apartment, so installing a whole house water softener isn't really an option. The water here in southeast TX is quite hard, last TDS reading was 842.
 

Steve@GM

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I like to think of it in simple terms:

The less crap there is dissolved in your water before you clean, then the more crap your water can hold while you clean.

Water can only hold so much dissolved solids. If you purify your fresh water by removing as much dissolved solids as possible, you create more "room" for the water to hold new solids like dirt and minerals in the materials you are cleaning. The closer you are to 0 TDS, the more rapidly the water will absorb solids. In essence, you provide an even deeper clean when using pure water vs hard water when cleaning.

Plus, as mentioned above, hard water wreaks havoc on equipment. Especially when dealing with heated water and steam. Before our town switched from well water, you would be lucky to have a coffee maker last past 6 months if you didn't routinely run an acid like vinegar through the lines to clear the calcium buildup.

The window washing industry uses purified water and scrubbing action in lieu of soap because it picks up all the dirt and leaves no hard water spots on the glass, even when left to air dry.
 
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So should use the DI stage of the filter also or by pass it ? The filter stages are 1 micron sediment, 1 micron carbon block, DI stage, 2 more separate 1 micron carbon blocks, then through the RO membrane.
 

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If you have really high TDS you will probably have to use both but it was my understanding that RO will reduce the TDS to near zero depending on your beginning TDS and that DI will take it all the way to zero. You do not want to start with DI or you'll find yourself buying a whole lot of resin. The order of filtration should be

1. Carbon Filter - This is like the filter in your Brita water pitcher or similar drinking water devices. It will take out the bigger stuff.

2. RO - This will take 90% of the disolved solids out of your water. Test your TDS after. If it's close to zero then it's probably good enough

3. DI - This will bring you down to Zero no matter what.
 

old tech

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DI only needed for spot free rinsing like with windows. Too harmful To fittings to use long term. That's why soft water for truck mounts recomended.
 

Steve@GM

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DI only needed for spot free rinsing like with windows. Too harmful To fittings to use long term. That's why soft water for truck mounts recomended.
If one is truly concerned about damaging their equipment, I would imagine that using the first two stages of filtration (carbon + RO) to bring the TDS down to <20 would be sufficient to clean well and prevent damage to fittings. Though I would still question the effect of DI water on fittings. While it's true that ultra pure water (UPW) basically acts like a solvent, we can't achieve that level of purity with our simple RO/DI systems. UPW grade water is achieved in lab and industrial settings for very specific purposes.
 

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If one is truly concerned about damaging their equipment, I would imagine that using the first two stages of filtration (carbon + RO) to bring the TDS down to <20 would be sufficient to clean well and prevent damage to fittings. Though I would still question the effect of DI water on fittings. While it's true that ultra pure water (UPW) basically acts like a solvent, we can't achieve that level of purity with our simple RO/DI systems. UPW grade water is achieved in lab and industrial settings for
If one is truly concerned about damaging their equipment, I would imagine that using the first two stages of filtration (carbon + RO) to bring the TDS down to <20 would be sufficient to clean well and prevent damage to fittings. Though I would still question the effect of DI water on fittings. While it's true that ultra pure water (UPW) basically acts like a solvent, we can't achieve that level of purity with our simple RO/DI systems. UPW grade water is achieved in lab and industrial settings for very specific purposes.
 

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OK here we go , as a technician working on carpet cleaning machines for 26 + years . I have messed with this issue in an on many machines. Issues with brass thinning walls on fittings and hose crimps WILL be effected. In stainless steel heat exchangers heated by catalytic exhaust reach temperature's hot enough to cause further brittleness to areas in tubing (especially near welds) causing transgranular cracking. Now add vibration's from operations,pulsing and Varible pressures these issues arize. Long term you will be spending more money on repairs than nessary.
 

Mike Krall

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OK here we go , as a technician working on carpet cleaning machines for 26 + years . I have messed with this issue in an on many machines. Issues with brass thinning walls on fittings and hose crimps WILL be effected. In stainless steel heat exchangers heated by catalytic exhaust reach temperature's hot enough to cause further brittleness to areas in tubing (especially near welds) causing transgranular cracking. Now add vibration's from operations,pulsing and Varible pressures these issues arize. Long term you will be spending more money on repairs than nessary.
But saving a bunch on chemicals. Which is saving more the chemical costs or equipment costs?

I'm not sure if he's around anymore but I know @Lance Golden uses RO for carpet cleaning.

Deionization

Deionized water (DI water, DIW or de-ionized water), often confused with demineralized water / DM water,[3] is water that has had almost all of its mineral ions removed, such as cations like sodium, calcium, iron, and copper, and anions such as chloride and sulfate. Deionization is a chemical process that uses specially manufactured ion-exchange resins, which exchange hydrogen and hydroxide ions for dissolved minerals, and then recombine to form water. Because most non-particulate water impurities are dissolved salts, deionization produces a high purity water that is generally similar to distilled water, and this process is quick and without scale buildup. However, deionization does not significantly remove uncharged organic molecules, viruses or bacteria, except by incidental trapping in the resin. Specially made strong base anion resins can remove Gram-negative bacteria. Deionization can be done continuously and inexpensively using electrodeionization.

Three types of deionization exist: co-current, counter-current, and mixed bed.
 

Steve@GM

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OK here we go , as a technician working on carpet cleaning machines for 26 + years . I have messed with this issue in an on many machines. Issues with brass thinning walls on fittings and hose crimps WILL be effected. In stainless steel heat exchangers heated by catalytic exhaust reach temperature's hot enough to cause further brittleness to areas in tubing (especially near welds) causing transgranular cracking. Now add vibration's from operations,pulsing and Varible pressures these issues arize. Long term you will be spending more money on repairs than nessary.
Well you definitely sound like you know your stuff, so I won't argue any further on the matter. I'm just repeating what I've read and learned while researching the pure water fed pole systems for the window washing side of my business. I'll take a technicians word on the matter over any book and probably stick with RO water instead of taking the TDS all the way down to zero with DI.
 

Mike Krall

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Well you definitely sound like you know your stuff, so I won't argue any further on the matter. I'm just repeating what I've read and learned while researching the pure water fed pole systems for the window washing side of my business. I'll take a technicians word on the matter over any book and probably stick with RO water instead of taking the TDS all the way down to zero with DI.
You don't use DI on your WFPs?

I was told it was necessary to 'polish' the water after RO and remove the remaining traces from the RO.
 
Feb 8, 2016
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OK here we go , as a technician working on carpet cleaning machines for 26 + years . I have messed with this issue in an on many machines. Issues with brass thinning walls on fittings and hose crimps WILL be effected. In stainless steel heat exchangers heated by catalytic exhaust reach temperature's hot enough to cause further brittleness to areas in tubing (especially near welds) causing transgranular cracking. Now add vibration's from operations,pulsing and Varible pressures these issues arize. Long term you will be spending more money on repairs than nessary.
I do know a bit about metals and corrosion, my primary job is a weld and coatings(NACE) inspector. The issue on the stainless components is very likely the result stress corrosion cracking from chlorine in the water supply at temperatures over 50 C(122F). Hence we never wipe down stainless lines with chlorinated solvents prior to coating. Note: I only have a portable.
 

Steve@GM

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You don't use DI on your WFPs?

I was told it was necessary to 'polish' the water after RO and remove the remaining traces from the RO.
Oh no, I was talking hypothetically about using pure water in carpet cleaning. For WFP's I have the Wash-It Pro system. If you can get TDS below 20 using RO then I think any spots are considered imperceptible to the human eye so it's considered acceptable to use just RO, but I would only consider this if the TDS was very low after RO (< 5). That's why I like the Wash-it pro. I can do RO, RO/DI, or just DI, though running straight DI is only recommended if you need higher flow pure water for multi-story buildings and such.
 

Jose Holguin

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But saving a bunch on chemicals. Which is saving more the chemical costs or equipment costs?

I'm not sure if he's around anymore but I know @Lance Golden uses RO for carpet cleaning.

Deionization

Deionized water (DI water, DIW or de-ionized water), often confused with demineralized water / DM water,[3] is water that has had almost all of its mineral ions removed, such as cations like sodium, calcium, iron, and copper, and anions such as chloride and sulfate. Deionization is a chemical process that uses specially manufactured ion-exchange resins, which exchange hydrogen and hydroxide ions for dissolved minerals, and then recombine to form water. Because most non-particulate water impurities are dissolved salts, deionization produces a high purity water that is generally similar to distilled water, and this process is quick and without scale buildup. However, deionization does not significantly remove uncharged organic molecules, viruses or bacteria, except by incidental trapping in the resin. Specially made strong base anion resins can remove Gram-negative bacteria. Deionization can be done continuously and inexpensively using electrodeionization.

Three types of deionization exist: co-current, counter-current, and mixed bed.
Lance was the first guy to tell me to never use Rain X indoors a couple of years ago.