Review: APEC Essence ROES-50 Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Filter System

    APEC Essence ROES-50

    APEC Essence ROES-50 Under Sink Reverse Osmosis System

    •    Price: $
    •    Filter Stages: 5
    •    NSF Cert.:
    •    Annual Cost: ~$80.00
    •    Warranty: 1 Year

    This review features APEC’s highly popular Essence ROES-50 reverse osmosis water filtration system.

    We are going to cover all its pros and cons, talk about installation and maintenance requirements + costs, and in the end give you our final verdict of what we think about the unit.

    First things first, the APEC ROES-50 uses 5 filter stages to provide clean and great tasting drinking water that’s also ideal for making coffee.

    • Stage 1: At Stage 1, we have a basic 5-micron polypropylene sediment pre-filter that removes stuff like sand, dirt and rust. The goal here is to prevent sediment from building up and clogging subsequent filtration stages.
    • Stage 2/3: Stage 2 and 3 both use a 10-micron coconut based activated carbon block filter that eliminates chlorine, tastes, odors, cloudiness, VOCs and other chemicals. Apart from improving water aesthetics, this is also to protect the delicate RO membrane from harm.
    • Stage 4: At stage 4, a semipermeable TFC reverse osmosis membrane comes into play. The membrane is capable of removing up to 99% of all contaminants that are left in the water, such as toxic lead, arsenic, radium and fluoride. In addition, it reduces TDS and a range of waterborne pathogens. By the way, the membrane is rated at 50 gallons per day at 60 psi pressure (30 gpd at 50 psi).
    • Stage 5: Whenever you draw water from the storage tank it flows through a 5-micron granular activated carbon (GAC) refining filter to get rid of any residual tastes/odors.

    The ROES-50 requires a minimum operating pressure of 40 psi. In case the pressure in your home is below that threshold you have to expect poor results.

    The recommended maximum operating pressure is 85 psi. Anything above that is likely to cause damage to the system and increases the chance for leaks.

    Maximum total dissolved solids that the system can handle: 2000 ppm – which is a lot!

    Recovery rate: 3:1 at optimum efficiency (pretty standard).

    What We Like

    As you can already tell from the name, the ROES-50 provides up to 50 gallons of filtered water per day, at least in theory. Due to backpressure and other factors the actual amount that can be produced is lower.

    Still, no matter how much water you use for drinking, cooking and to wash your car (just kidding), filtration capacity, water flow and the 4-gallon storage tank should be 100% sufficient even for larger families. FYI: The system will automatically shut off once the tank is full which takes a minimum of 3 hours.

    What’s more, according to APEC, the ROES-50 is suited for treating tap AND well water. Plus we like the fact that it’s affordable and noise-free during operation.

    Last but not least, the system is backed by a 1-year limited warranty (2 years with product registration), lifetime support from WQA certified specialists, and excellent customer feedback.

    APEC Essence ROES-50

    System Installation

    System must be installed indoors.

    As with most RO units, DIY installing the APEC Essence ROES-50 is fairly simple. For one, you get all supplies that are needed for the setup. Secondly, the system uses quick connect fittings and color-coded tubing which makes the whole process a lot easier and faster (also goes for maintenance).

    Now, obviously, this is 100% subjective and depends on your previous plumbing experience and also if you have the right tools at hand or can get them from somewhere.

    In any case, you can count on APEC’s online installation videos that provide easy-to-follow instructions. Here is part 1 of a 5-part video series:

    Parts List

    • RO module with filter and membrane housings
    • Pre/post-filter set
    • TFC membrane (0.0001 micron)
    • Drain saddle
    • Water storage tank (4 gallons, white)
    • Tank stand
    • Tank ball valve
    • 360° rotatable lead-free brushed nickel faucet with washers and nuts
    • Color-coded tubing
    • Feed water adapter (½″ and ⅜″)
    • Feed water valve
    • Filter and membrane housing wrenches
    • Teflon tape and other accessory parts
    • Instructions

    Filter/Membrane Replacements

    Both filters and the RO membrane are relatively long lasting, meaning that maintenance requirements are low.

    But the system works with housings rather than a modular design. So if you want to replace one of the components you will have to open its housing first. And since water flows through the housing, you would do good to have a bucket at the ready. In other words, things can get a little messy but not too much.

    On the upside, the total annual replacement costs are acceptable. They shouldn’t exceed $80 USD. Systems that come with modular replacement filters are usually more expensive.

    This is how often you will have to change each component as per manufacturer specifications:

    • Sediment pre-filter: Every 6 to 12 months
    • Carbon block pre-filters: Every 6 to 12 months
    • RO membrane: Every 2 to 3 years for city water, 2 years on well water
    • Carbon post-filter: Every 2 to 3 years

    As always, you should take this as a rough guideline. How long each filter respectively membrane will last in your home also depends on your water usage and the contamination level of the feed water.

    On a side note, all components are industry standard sized so you could buy cheaper aftermarket replacements to save additional cash if you want to.

    Manual

    Looking for a manual? Find one right here.

    What We Don’t Like

    Here is what we don’t like:

    • We read reports about filters starting to leak after a couple of months use. Furthermore, the cheap plastic fittings might require replacement incurring additional costs in order to prevent water damage.
    • The filtered water faucet does exactly what it’s supposed to do. We just don’t like the design very much. And the “APEC WATER” emblem on its side doesn’t help either.
    • Another concern that we have is that this unit is NOT certified for contaminant removal. All APEC provides is a rough range of reduction rates.

    Our Verdict

    The strengths of the APEC Essence ROES-50 reverse osmosis water filter system is that it’s (A) affordable, (B) low in maintenance, (C) provides enough water that (D) tastes great.

    Our verdict for this Amazon best seller: 4.5 out of 5 stars!

    Looking for More APEC Water Filter Reviews?

    Not what you were looking for? No problem, we have more APEC water filter reviews.

    Or you can check out our guide featuring the top 10 reverse osmosis systems for the money.

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    This completes our APEC ROES-50 review. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below!

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