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Legionella occurs from mostly natural resources but it can also grow and spread through engineered water systems. As a legionella testing company, we are able to provide you with the resources to test and analyse your water in a simple and manageable way.

Monitoring and managing the risks is essential. If legionella bacteria is released in an aerosol those susceptible can become a victim to serious illness. The elderly, those with a poor immune system, and the young will suffer from its effects if legionella is present in the water system.

Utilising our water testing kits and taking advantage of our laboratories ensures that, as a property owner or a tenant, you can check accurately whether legionella is present. We follow up each and every testing kit that is returned to us with expert advice so that you can manage any potential risk in the proper manner.

What is Legionella?

Bacterium causing legionnaires disease can develop and grow through water systems that are purposed for warming water and keeping it at a certain temperature.

Legionella can spread serious illness especially for those suffering from the following:

• Chronic Respiratory Disease
• Kidney Disease
• Lung Disease
• Heart Imperfections
• Diabetes
• People Over 45 Years Old
• Heavy Smokers
• Heavy Drinker

Legionella Pneumophila is common in natural water sources although engineered water systems, such as those in domestic and commercial properties, can harbour the bacteria as they are designed to retain the water at a certain temperature. Between 20°C and 60°C can be the ideal growth areas for the bacteria, so cold water should remain below 20°C and hot water retained at 60°C or above.

How Often to Carry Out Water Testing?

Wouldn’t it be good to ensure that your water system is free of any risk?

Although it is not a legal requirement it is certainly worth testing for. Water testing helps to ensure that people living or working in your building are free from any risk associated with legionella.

In commercial property, it is recommended that water testing is carried out on a six monthly basis.

If you manage a cooling tower please refer to HSG274 or contact us for specialist advice as these systems should be subject to very stringent testing regimes.

If you have a domestic hot and cold-water system, it is not a standard or legal requirement to test it on a regular basis if you are managing and controlling the system in the right manner – however it is strongly recommended to test for legionella regularly to ensure your control measures continue to be effective ensuring your patients, colleagues and tenants occupying the building are free from risk.

What is Aquacert Water Testing Company?

Aquacert cover a wide range of buildings and water systems in both natural and engineered water systems. Our testing kits help with precautionary and result-measured legionella sampling, testing and analysis.

Our water testing kits can pick up on the most unsuspecting systems that may return positive results when it comes to legionella bacteria. These are designed to accurately detect legionella bacteria if it is present in any water system. Sampling ensures that you can pick up any of the bacteria and the water testing kits are easy to use and return to us for analysis at the laboratory.

When you return your test samples, analysis is carried out at our UKAS accredited Laboratory. All our clients receive complete advice following water testing which ensures that you can carry out further control measures should you need to.

As a specialist Legionella Testing Company, we may recommend:

• Removing or cutting back deadleg pipework
• Weekly flushing of outlets that are used infrequently such as shower heads or taps
• Retesting the system monthly for three months to ensure the system is free from the bacteria
• Cleaning and de-scaling water outlets regularly
• Draining hot water systems to check for signs of corrosion/rust/debris collection
• Insulating water tanks sufficiently and ensuring they have lids or insect screening

It is a legal requirement to have a Water Risk Assessment for a commercial property; this report will highlight areas of risk and guidance on control measures. Controlling the risk of legionella is vital. Anyone is at risk although the particularly vulnerable are especially susceptible.
Water testing kits are available from us here at Aquacert.

Author: Duncan Hollis