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Regular testing and monitoring of water systems is one of the key components of the responsibilities of duty holders in managing the risks of Legionella bacteria. But how often should you buy a Legionella test kit?

There is no set schedule as to when and how often testing should be carried out by responsible persons. How often tests should be conducted will depend on a few crucial factors, including the type of water system, the monitoring and control measures currently enforced, the type of assets on the property, and their associated risks.

Legionella risk assessment is now considered a legal requirement and now sets the pace as to how often testing should be conducted. Specifically, this risk assessment should include pipeworks and other components of the water system including showers, taps and tanks.

However, a Legionella risk assessment review needs to be conducted whenever the risk may have changed. Such situations include: changes to the water system; changes in the use of the water system; the population on the property moves toward a high risk category; a Legionella outbreak; recording of positive samples; when current management measures are no longer effective, and when new updates and recommendations are released. 

Should an outbreak occur, or if you suspect the presence of Legionella, or if the control measures currently enforced no longer work, it is highly recommended that microbiological sampling be conducted to screen for biological risks. If you are a duty holder, you are tasked to consult with professionals to identify what exactly needs to be done to rectify the problem.

Duty holders may also carry out assessment and inspection of water systems, especially if the current conditions can lead to the development of Legionella. The monitoring and management protocol should include which procedures and schedules to follow for testing the water system.

Ideally, the temperature of water systems should be monitored on a monthly basis because the Legionella bacteria can easily thrive within the temperature range of 20°C to 45°C. Regularly checking the temperature can dramatically decrease the risk of a Legionella outbreak. Also, it is highly recommended for duty holders to keep a record of test and monitoring to serve as a reference.

At AquaCert we pride ourselves in providing the highest quality legionella and water testing kits.


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Author: +Duncan Hollis