Question about running my RO DI system

  • #1
I am getting my R DI system in today. I already have the booster pump I will need.
I do not have any automatic shut-offs or solenoids or "extras". I figure I can monitor things closely enough while I am using it.
And unfortunately youtube is lacking in the basics. Maybe I'm already supposed to know how to turn it on. Or maybe it does not make a difference.

So the way I understand it, I run a hose from my water source to the booster pump. I already have a valve in my plumbing that will make this easy.
Then from the pump to the inlet on the 5 stage setup.
Then from there, there will be one hose for my waste water and one for my RO water.

So how do I turn the whole thing on?
Do I open the valve for my water source, then plug in the booster pump? Or the other way around?
Or does the booster pump sense a water flow and automatically turn on? The instructions do not mention this.
The unit is the one Bulk Reef Supply sells. As well as the booster pump.

  • #2
Hopefully, your RO system will come with adequate instructions on setting up the system,but I will be glad to answer questions if I am able to do so.

I hope you have a container to catch the RO water produced. Most units produce approximately 2 gallons per hour, so you need a large reservoir to hold the product.

Some units are designed for use under a sink and come with a pressurized storage tank and valves that automatically control the production of water. I have one of those I use with water that I use in the kitchen icemaker and water dispenser. They typically are used without a booster pump.

If you system does not have automatic control valves, you need to have a large container to catch the RO water. I use a 42 gallon Brute trashcan for that purpose. If the system does not come with its own control system, you will have to design your own. I control the inlet water flow using a Rainbird lawn sprinkler valve By controling the power to the solenoid, I can start and stop the water flow. Since you are also using a booster pump, you will need a way of shutting turning the pump on and off at the same time.

I use a Hubitat Elevation home automation hub to control my lighting and other devices. I set it up to control my RO system as well. Every morning at 7:00 am, Hubitat turns on the electrical outlet that provides power for the RO system, As a reminder to me that the system is on, it also turns on a lamp and announces that the RO system has been turned on, but that is an advanced topic.

When the RO tank level is full, a water sensor probe makes contact and turns off the electrical outlet, turning off the RO system. At the same time, the lamp turns off and the system announces that the RO system has been turned off. Should the water sensor fail to detect the high water level, and the tank overflow, I have a water leak sensor at the base of the tank that will detect the overflow and shut down the system. As long as both water sensors do not fail at the same time, I am good. Also as yet another failsafe, when the RO system starts, a timer starts counting. I have it set for the normal length of time the system runs. Thus, the timer will shut the system down if all else fails.

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  • #3
Hopefully, your RO system will come with adequate instructions on setting up the system,but I will be glad to answer questions if I am able to do so.

Yeah, hopefully they will be better than the ones that came with the pump.

So there isn't a way to do it the way I asked?
I have to buy solenoids and valves and timers like your system has???

What about these guys where you see their system in their tub? They don't simply turn on the water and have at it? They have a bunch of valves and shutoffs I'm not seeing?

I'm not understanding why someone would sell a booster pump and transformer if it needs a bunch of other stuff to work... Maybe in case it goes bad.
  • #4
I have no idea which brand or model of RO system or booster pump you purchased. Depending upon what you are trying to accomplish, you might be able to monitor the system manually, but my system is down in the basement and I do not want to have to keep running up and down the stairs to monitor when the tank is full. Back in the old days before I automated the system, water ran over into the floor on many occasions. Fortunately, the floor is concrete and no harm was done.

Once the system arrives, send me as many details as you can about the system and I will try to help you set it up in a way that will work for you and your budget. If you get a solenoid valve to start and stop the water, you might be able to use an inexpensive aplug-in timer to control the water.

Does your booster pump amplify existing water pressure using diaphragms, or does it have an electrical motor. If it has diagraphragms, turning the water one and off will start and stop the pump automatically. If it has an electric motor, you dop not want to run the pump unless the water valve is open.
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  • #5
I have no idea which brand or model of RO system or booster pump you purchased.

Bulk Reef Supply has their own proprietary unit.
The reason I did not post a link to it was because it did not pertain to what I was asking.

I thought I had all the information needed to answer my question, but apparently not. I appreciate you trying though. And telling me about how you have yours hooked up.

Anyway, I called BRS and asked them what I asked here and they said, yes. I can most certainly run the system without all the extra valves and solenoids.
So I'm GTG.

Just trying to get all my ducks in a row in case the hardware store is closed tomorrow. And I'd bet money it will be.
  • #6
Depending upon which unit you purchased, they will produce up to 150 gpd of RO water, especially if you have a booster pump.

You should have tubing to go from your water supply to the pump and another one from the pump to the system. I presume the connections between the filters and will already be made for you.

You will need to connect the waste line to a drain of some sort. Then the RO water line will go to the container you are using to store RO water.

After the system is hooked up, turn on the water supply and then turn on the booster pump. When you have made enough water, turn off the booster pump and turn off the water supply. You do not want to run the pump until the water is turned on.

Yes, you can monitor the system manually, but I suspect you will want some form of automation eventually.

Generally, the tubing used for the RO system is 1/4" ID. Depending upon the supply valve, you will need fittings to go from the valve to 1/4" tubing.


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  • #7
Mounting the 1x12 on the wall is proving more difficult than expected.
I can't find either one of my stud finders and the drywall screws I am finding are not jiving with the location of the outlet (typically mounted to the side of a stud). Plus a couple screws look like they might have missed the stud with one.

But tomorrow is another day. I can almost see those stud finders in my mind, so it may hit me tonight yet :confused:

Otherwise, it's not like any errant holes won't be hidden by the board :)

I've already laid the canisters and booster pump on a table and figured routing of lines. I even cut a couple.
It was kind of odd at first, because even though the flow of the source water is left to right, the lines all end up on the left side. And then I have to run one back to the right side to go through the standalone DI canister to keep the left to right thing going.

The booster pump will need to be mounted sideways because it is designed for a right to left flow. And I think horizontal will look better than upside down. Especially with the power cord arrangement.
Seeing as how everything is BRS's stuff, you would think they would make the booster pump flow in the same direction as the canisters o_O

And... there is a built in auto shut-off. It registers back pressure. I would still need to unplug the transformer though. Or buy an extra shut-off switch for it. But it will at least turn off the water flow with either a ball valve on the product line or a float valve in my tank/container.
But seeing as how I walk past this thing 50 times a day, manual should work just fine for me. I'll time how long it takes to make 11 gallons, then set an alarm shy of that. I only intend to make ten gallons at a time anyway. Plus I'm never going to trust extra valves and switches anyway. Which is why i did not order any.

But overall I am very happy with the system. I should be trickling out some RO DI water tomorrow. Pic when it's on the wall.
  • #8
I am all BRS with pump and float valves.
6 stage chloramine deluxe with one extra unit in front of it for giggles .
No chloramine in my water !!
Get the float valve and a 32-42 g Brute barrel and the wheeled thing if moving is needed .
without float valve you need to turn off water ,switch to pump and then worry about the unit dripping ?
Never had one of the BRS floats fail yet . I run with 2 of them so I can have DI and no DI .
BRS has videos that cover everything you could think of RO/DI related ..
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  • #9
Hey, I'm reverse osmosing ;)

RO DI 1.jpg

They said to run it about an hour to flush it, but I figured half an hour was good. That got me half a bucket full.

I tested it with my meter and the TDS said 1, but the meter on the system said 0. And I trust that more. So from 135 TDS to 0. Pretty nice.
Also the API test showed what I'm saying is 0 dKH and dGH. One drop from the bottle barely added a tint to the clear water, but it was the tint of the target color.

I've got an 11g dog food container (food grade plastic) you can just make out behind the bucket. I'll drill a hole in the lid for the tubing.

I like the way everything was ready to go. And there were no leaks. But I did need to adjust the pressure on the booster pump down.

RO DI 2.jpg
  • #10
Having the system mounted above the electric outlet is not ideal. When you have to take the DI canister apart to replace the resin canister, you WILL splash some water.... guaranteed. You might want to see if you can get one of the outdoor electrical box covers to keep the receptacle dry.

You should be able to find them locally as well.

If you get a countdown timer designed for outdoor use, you can set it and not worry about shutting the system off on time.
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  • #12
Made my day!
It made my day, too.
Let the "true biotopes" begin :D

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