Reverse Osmosis Troubleshooting

All Reverse Osmosis Systems eventually show degradation in performance which manifests as a loss in permeate flow, a loss of salt rejection, or an increase in pressure drop.

From our experience, organic fouling is by far the leading cause of membrane fouling. Scaling accounts for less than 5% of materials found on membranes. This is because pretreatment is normally effective at controlling scale on reverse osmosis membranes.

The main objectives of RO troubleshooting are to identify your plant’s membrane system irregularities & to investigate modes of membrane system failures, with the plan to restore your plant’s membrane performance. Our ability to correctly diagnose & rectify problems with your reverse osmosis system is critical to keeping your plant on line & working efficiently.

In most cases, there is more than one cause for reverse osmosis plant performance decline.

Water Management Australia’s Reverse Osmosis Engineers use several techniques to troubleshoot your reverse osmosis plant including:

  • Mechanical evaluation
  • System design & performance projections
  • Membrane integrity testing
  • General performance issues
  • Data normalisation
  • Water sample analysis
  • Profiling & probing
  • Membrane autopsy

Possible causes for Reverse Osmosis Plant performance issues include:

  • Membrane oxidation
  • Membrane hydrolysis
  • O-ring failure
  • Membrane failure
  • Membrane scaling
  • Membrane biofouling
  • Membrane organic fouling
  • Membrane colloidal fouling
  • Membrane compaction