Reverse osmosis and distilled water are two different ways to purify water. Both methods remove impurities from water, but they do so in different ways. There are many different options for choosing what kind of water to drink. Two of the most popular choices are reverse osmosis water and distilled water. So, which is better?

What is Distilled Water

Distilled water is made by boiling water and then condensing the steam back into the water. This process removes impurities from the water, including minerals, bacteria, and other contaminants. Distilled water is often used in medical settings because it’s sterile or in industrial environments where it’s important to have pure water for chemical reactions. 

While distilled water is safe to drink, some people find it has a flat taste because many of the minerals that give natural waters their flavor have been removed.

Often, doctors recommend that their patients use distilled water for specific treatments because it ensures that no harmful bacteria or contaminants will be present. Another reason people might use distilled water is for cooking or drinking.

No matter your reason for using distilled water, it’s important to remember that it must store adequately to maintain its purity. Once opened, distilled water can quickly become contaminated if not kept in a clean and sealed container. Therefore, follow any storage instructions provided by the manufacturer to keep your distilled water as pure as possible.

Total Dissolved Solid (TDS) in Distilled Water

TDS (Total Dissolved Solid) of distilled water is closer to 0 (zero). That means no minerals exist in water; it does not matter whether the minerals are good or bad. Therefore, distilled water is the purest water on the earth. Rain (after 15 minutes) is almost the same as distilled water. 

What is Reverse Osmosis Water

Reverse osmosis works by pushing water through a semi-permeable membrane. This process removes impurities from the water, including dissolved minerals, bacteria, and viruses. This membrane only allows certain molecules, like clean water molecules, to pass through it. The impurities are left behind and are flushed away.

This method removes impurities from the water, such as dissolved solids, bacteria, viruses, heavy metals, and other contaminants. It also reduces the amount of chlorine needed to disinfect the water.

The process works by forcing water under high pressure through a thin sheet of plastic called a semi-permeable membrane. Water molecules are too large to pass through this membrane; however, most ions and particles are small enough to fit through. As a result, only pure water passes through, leaving behind all the dissolved minerals and chemicals. 

Total Dissolved Solid (TDS) in RO water

Usually, the reverse osmosis system has a reduced rate of 95% to 97%. That means 95% to 97% of minerals are filtered out; it doesn’t matter whether the minerals are good or bad. Let’s consider the reduction rate of the RO system is 97%. Then what will happen? 

If the TDS of tap water is 100, then after RO filtration, it will be only 3. If the TDS of tap water is 200, then after RO filtration, it will be only 6 and go on. 

Reverse Osmosis vs. Distilled Water, Which is better? 

That depends on what you’re looking for. If you want all the impurities removed from your water, reverse osmosis or distilled water is a good choice. However, you may want to keep some minerals (calcium and magnesium) in your drinking water. Then, choose reverse osmosis is the better option. 

Reverse osmosis and distillation both provide pure water but are different. In the RO system, minerals and alkaline are added to the water to make it healthier. However, while distillation also purifies water, it does not add beneficial minerals. As a result, your water becomes tasteless and devoid of beneficial minerals. 

Distilled Water Reverse Osmosis Water
99.9% TDS reduction 97% TDS reduction
Produced by water vapor or RO system Produced by RO system
Industrial and medical uses Drinking and cooking water uses
pH neutral – (close to 7) Little acidic – (pH 6 to 7)
Slower process Faster Process

Is Distilled Water the Same As Normal Water?

No, distilled water is not the same as regular water. Instead, distilled water is made by boiling water and then condensing the steam back into a liquid. This process removes impurities from the water, including minerals like calcium and magnesium. As a result, distilled water is more acidic than regular tap water.

Can We Drink Distilled Water?

Yes, you can drink distilled water. You may ask then, what happened to removed minerals? We suggest you add minerals to the distilled water. Again, though, it is optional because water is not the only source of minerals for our body, but food.

Distilling water is considered safe by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration). In fact, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration even approves distilled water for human consumption.

Can we remineralize RO and Distilled water?

Yes, it is possible to remineralize RO and distilled water. In most RO systems, there is a default mineral filter. If your RO system has no mineral filter, you just need to buy one. 

On the other hand, if you want to add minerals to distilled water, you need to buy a mineral drop. Adding minerals to distilled water will make your water more healthy. We suggest adding minerals with the manufactures guideline or doctor’s prescription. 

Is Bottled Water Distilled Water?

No, bottled water is not distilled water. But, almost all bottled water is purified by reverse osmosis. 

What is Distilled Water in Chemistry? 

Distilled water is often used in laboratories and chemical plants because it contains no contaminants that could interfere with experiments or reactions. It is also used in car batteries, irons, and steam cleaners because it does not leave behind any mineral deposits. 

Is Reverse Osmosis Water The Same As Distilled Water?

No, not at all! Distilled water is very pure, while reverse osmosis water is more like purified water. Both are still good enough to drink, but there are some differences.

The main difference between reverse osmosis water and distilled water is that reverse osmosis has more TSD (total dissolved solid than distilled water. Also, the primary purpose of RO water is drinking and cooking. On the other hand, the primary purpose of distilled water is for industrial and medical uses. 

Can distilled water produce by the RO system? 

Yes, it is possible. Many industries produce distilled water by RO system. But this process is different from the household RO system. 

A booster pump and membrane are required to produce distilled water with an RO system. The RO system will work like a household RO system in the first stage. Then, an additional membrane will apply with a reduced rate of 99.9%. As a result, the distilled water (closer to zero TDS) will produce from the RO system. 

Which is a much faster process reverse osmosis or distillation?

The main disadvantage of distilled water in the household is time consumption. In the distillation process, you must spend a couple of hours producing a single bottle of water. On the other hand, a household RO system (50 Gallon Per Day) can produce 7.5 liters of water per hour. That means reverse osmosis is a much faster process than distillation. 


Reverse osmosis and distillation are different methods of purifying water. Both are safe for drinking, but producing process of water is different. For someone looking for zero TDS, distilled water is the only solution. Also, distilled water has more uses for industrial purposes than household purposes.