Watts Premier 4-Stage Reverse Osmosis System Review

The Watts Premier RO Pure reverse osmosis (RO) system is a modular under sink design that delivers up to 50 gallons per day of pure water. This output is based on the standard industry measure of water being delivered at 60 psi and 77 degrees Fahrenheit. This output, as with all RO systems, is highly dependent on the pressure and temperature of the water being delivered to the system. Lower pressure and lower temperature water means that the output will be reduced.

This system, like the Brondell H2O RO system, has a LED indicator in the faucet that warns you when the filters need changing. This is a very useful feature since the only other effective way to know when the primary filters need changing is to use a TDS meter to measure the quality of the filtered pure water.

The purity of the water is reached by passing it through a 4 stage filtration and membrane system:

  • Stage 1 – A 5 Micron Sediment Filter to remove or reduce dirt, sand, or rust that would harm the RO membrane and reduce its life.
  • Stage 2 – A 5 Micron Carbon Block Filter removes chlorine, unpleasant tastes, and smells from the feed water.
  • Stage 3 – RO Membrane
  • Stage 4 – Carbon Post filter since water that has passed through a RO system can sometimes have a strange taste. This is not caused by what is in the water, rather by what has been removed from it. The 4th stage adds back a familiar taste to the filtered pure water.

The system comes complete with all the fittings and hoses that are needed to complete the installation including an air gap faucet. In some areas an air gap faucet is required to be fitted by code on all RO systems.

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Filtration System Design

The Watts Premier RO Pure is a truly modular RO system. All the filters are attached through a manifold, which keeps the number of tubes to a minimum and makes for a neater installation.

The filters are contained within their own housing and the whole unit is changed as one. Changing the filters has been designed to be easy and causes as little spilled water as possible.

To replace a filter, all that you need to do is pull the filter that you want to change slightly away from the vertical, press the button on the manifold and pull the filter away.  Remove the protective cap from the new filter, then insert the filter into the manifold until it clicks. The filter change is now complete. After replacing a new filter, the indicator light needs to be reset. To do this, just remove and replace the battery (at the base of the faucet) for the LED light. The system is now ready for use.

Water Efficiency

As is common with all RO systems, the membrane needs to be flushed to remove the filtered debris and allow it to function efficiently. Doing this means that water is wasted. The amount of water that is wasted during this flushing is dependent on the pressure of the feed water.

For the Watts Premier RO Pure there are no figures given in their data sheets to say how much water is wasted for every gallon of pure water produced but typically, for this type of system, between 3 and 4 gallons of water are wasted to produce a gallon of pure drinking water.

Ease of Installation 4.7/5

If you have a blanked off 1 ¼” hole already in your sink, the most difficult part of the installation is already done. If not, making a 1 ¼” diameter hole in a counter top can be difficult due to the size. The hole needs to be this large to accommodate the air gap faucet. Once the hole for the faucet has been taken care of, the rest of the installation is very easy. It is simply a matter of mounting the filter manifold and then connecting color coded pipes to the indicated push-fit connectors.

The full Watts installation manual for this model can be found by following this link. Once the system has been installed, it needs to be flushed before use. To flush the system, fill and empty the tank 3 times. The system is now ready to produce pure drinking water.

Pros

  • Water output per day – 50 gallons
  • Filter life stage 1 and 2 – 6 months
  • Filter life stage 4 – 1 year
  • Membrane life – 2 to 5 years
  • Modular filters
  • Indicator light to tell you when filters need changing
  • Air gap faucet – required in some localities by plumbing code
  • Warranty – 3 year manufacturer’s limited warranty

Cons

  • This system is supplied with a 3-gallon storage tank, compared to many other systems that have a 4.2-gallon tank. This means that at peak demand the water supply can be a little slower than with similarly sized systems.

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Conclusion 4.2/5

Our review of the Watts Premier RO Pure found this to be a very competitively priced and effective RO system. The easy to change filters combined with the built in indicator light to remind you when the filter need changing keep maintenance to a minimum. Some long term users have mentioned that their system has developed leaks after some time. This system, along with every other RO system, should be checked from time to time for leaks. Often they are caused by the push-fit tubes not being seated correctly and over time a small leak occurs. Should you get a leak, first make sure that the tubes are pressed home fully and secondly that the drain pipes have not become blocked.