Tuesday, 5 December 2017

EMWC - Reverse Osmosis - 5 Stage - Review & Fitting Tips

EMWC - Reverse Osmosis - 5 Stage - Review - Intro

First off if you are buying this to treat tap water in the UK don't bother. Tap water in the UK is the most highly regulated in the world, in terms of quality. Depending on where you live you may be lucky enough to get mineral water out of you tap for free!

Residents of Portsmouth for example get beautiful calcium rich chalk aquifer water out of their taps. And the Drinking Water Inspectorate place strict limits on any nasties full stop. Do not bother treating mains tap water.

If you however use borehole water that is contaminated with heavy metals, pesticides or other then please read on . . . .

Takes up Most of Room Under Sink - Not a lot of room for Washing Up Liquid

EMWC - Reverse Osmosis - 5 Stage - Review - Cost

The East Midlands Water Company sells well priced reverse osmosis units, at around the £150 mark at the time of buying. This is pretty cheap considering how complicated the unit is. However, just like buying a cheap printer, you could expect to make up for it with the cost of the cartridges. The 5 filters in the units at present are around £60 to replace, although you can order extra for not much money with initial purchase.

Bearing in mind the unit does not work the cost even if £1 would be too high.

EMWC - Reverse Osmosis - 5 Stage - Review - Quality

This worries me. I am not saying that the RO unit does not function, but the connections between filters are numerous and the the fitting are small and do not inspire confidence.

The unit operates at mains pressure! So small screw fit plastic connectors make be worry a bit. If one of these "popped off" there would be £1000s of damage done in just a few hours. Other higher cost system feature much more robust connectors and less of them.

Plastic Fittings do not Feel Very Sturdy

Like I say I am sure it is fit for purpose, but this is a mains pressure system, and as such could be conceived as a bit flimsy.

The instructions that come with the kit are OK, but a bit more details wouldn't go amiss. Also I did not have enough inserts to put in all the pipe ends. Which was a bit annoying, how much does an insert cost 1p? And I was short. The fitting for the top of the pressure vessel will not seal with PTFE tape, so get a role of that prior to fitting. Again they could include roll of this (50p), you need it for fitting.

EMWC - Reverse Osmosis - 5 Stage - Review - Fitting Tips

Fitting is fairly simple. But any mistakes will lead to much damage from leakage so this ups the stakes a bit, it is not an enjoyable process knowing the risks are so high. Especially considering the flimsy nature of the connectors. For fitting you will need:

  • Drill with c.12mm drill bit - To make hole in sink for tap.
  • File Possibly - To enlarge hole in sink.
  • Smaller drill bit - for fitting waste pipe
  • Some silicone to seal waste pipe, if not using kit (optional extra)
  • Screws and screwdriver for mounting inside cupboard
  • Sharp knife and chopping board to cut pipes to length
  • Adjustable spanner for tap fitting.
  • PTFE Tape to seal tank threads
PTFE Around Tank Thread

It took me around 3 hours. Although the last hour I was also cooking tea at the same time. 

EMWC - Reverse Osmosis - 5 Stage - Review - Taste

The water tastes pretty flat, this is to be expected as you are pretty much drinking distilled water. Mineral filters are available to the put the minerals back in before you drink it. I have not done any analysis on the water to test how effective the treatment is. 

Lots of Tubes!

EMWC - Reverse Osmosis - 5 Stage - Review - Conclusions

This is certainly is as very cheap option for those wishing to treat water to a high state of purity, however the fittings do not inspire confidence. 

Waste Transfer Station Permit


  1. i bunged an emwc water softener (dual tank) below the sink in our house.
    Crammed it in, to reduce cutting the cabinets, so it is actually fitted backwards (salt goes in at the back as a consequence, so you have to reach in under the sink). My wife loves it. Our kettle loves it.
    Mind you, here (just off the chilterns) we have HARD water - all that limestone in the hills (the reservoirs are up at Tring).
    Where my father lives, on a granite area, it would be a waste of money.
    Good/Bad - depends where you live.

  2. and i guess you get what you pay for - my ewmc softener was a LOT more than 150 quid ...

  3. To get rid of our manganese we have now had to install a pH correction unit ahead of our Mn unit, which is a big tank full of crushed limestone (calcite actually) and now we have hard water! Our kettle scaled up and stopped working, first time I have ever seen that!