Minimizing risks of legionella in rental property

All landlords have a legal responsibility in the UK to guarantee that their residential properties are safe for the renters who occupy them. This extends to properties leased for business as well as residential uses.

Part of these tasks entails ensuring that the estate does not have an increased risk of harboring Legionella bacteria. Legionella, which is a dangerous form of pneumonia infection, may cause life-threatening Legionnaires' disease.

In buildings, It is commonly found in filthy and badly stored water systems, including hot and cold plumbing systems, climate control, decorative waterfalls, hot tubs, etc.

Since bacteria are likely to be found in most building water supplies, it is essential to ensure that they do not spike to harmful levels.

Steps to control legionella

In most cases, to control their risks, a homeowner would not need to take excessively complex steps and precautions. For example, the risk of Legionella bacteria is likely to be minimal in a typical domestic estate with a clear water system. In conditions where the land is left vacant and the water left to stagnate inside the system, the risk is greater.

By constantly flushing through the system, this is quickly resolved. Turning on taps and showerheads for a while assures the water runs and does not get sluggish.

Landlords managing properties apart from those with simple water schemes are most likely to benefit from taking additional steps to safeguard those in the building.

Legionella Risk Assessments

A comprehensive legionella risk assessment is the first and most critical step towards any legionella safety plan. Doing one will tell you where the dangers are.

This sort of risk assessment should be conducted by someone who has the right expertise and knowledge to accurately determine all the risks of legionella.

Regular water temperature checks

Legionella bacteria flourish in water temperatures between 20-45 degrees Celsius,  You should ensure that water temperatures are kept below the legionella growth zone (20-45 degrees Celsius). Hot water should be kept warm, at least 50 degrees Celsius at taps and cold water should be kept under 20 degrees Celsius, 

If hot water is kept in a cylinder, by adding a thermostat or a water temperature sensor, you can make sure it is still at a steady level at all times. To ensure that the water is properly stored, the heating system can be calibrated to ensure that the stored water is heated every day to 60 degrees Celsius. 

This ensures that you do not have to visit the property on a regular basis to carry out this operation.