Pilot Test of Electrochemical Demineralization Standard Ready

WQA task force recently completed its standard development work and is now preparing to pilot test the standard

Typical cation exchange water softeners have been under regulatory attack because of the salt used to regenerate the ion exchange bed and the water, which is sent to waste during the regeneration process.

Some areas of the country have even banned the use of water softeners. In 2011, industry members asked the Water Quality Assn. (WQA) to develop a product performance standard and test protocol for point-of-entry electrochemical demineralization systems.

Like water softeners, electrochemical demineralization systems are designed to handle hard source water. Unlike softeners, they are not designed to deliver soft product water with less than 1 grain of hardness per gal. They reduce hardness, and they also reduce the overall total dissolved solids through the same electrochemical mechanisms that are being utilized to remove calcium and magnesium. They do not use salt.

WQA began organizing a task force to draft a performance standard for electrochemical demineralization systems late last year. Some of the issues that the task force set out to address through this standard include:  

  • Will electrochemical demineralization systems continue to reduce hardness over time?
  • How much electricity do these systems consume?
  • How much water is sent to waste?
  • Can they handle the diverse water usage patterns that a POE system would be subjected to?  

The task force recently completed its standard development work, and WQA is now preparing to pilot test the standard. Manufacturers who are interested in participating in the pilot-testing phase should contact Eric Yeggy at [email protected].