Aquacert provide a full and comprehensive range of Legionella testing kits. We provide an easy and inexpensive method for testing your Business or Premises for Legionella Bacteria. You can find a full list of all our legionella test kits in the left hand side of our page. Each Business or Premises listed, have a selection of testing kits available to them.
Legionella Testing kits for Businesses
WATER QUALITY TESTING KITS FOR DRINKING WATER
Water which is intended for ‘drinking’ must conform to various chemical and bacteriological standards. The UK has high quality drinking water supplied by the Water Undertakers (Thames, Severn Trent etc) who ensure that these standards are met.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – HOT WATER
The ‘hot’ water which supplies our sinks and wash hand basins is known as Domestic Hot Water. There are numerous methods of generating this hot water, such as:- Immersion heaters. Calorifiers. Electric water heaters. Gas fired water heaters. Combi boilers.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – CALORIFIERS & WATER HEATERS
There are numerous methods to generate domestic hot water for sinks, wash hand basins etc, such as:- Calorifier (generic term for a device that heats fluids by circulating them over heating coils). Immersion heater. Electric water heaters. Gas fired water heaters. Combi boilers.
WATER QUALITY TESTING KITS FOR DRINKS MACHINES
Drinks machines are commonplace nowadays wherever people gather. They come in a variety of formats, such as:- Bottled drinking water units Mains fed drinking water units Vending machines
BACTERIA TESTING – COLD WATER STORAGE TANKS
The majority of buildings have cold water storage tanks. Some of these tanks feed only toilet cisterns or calorifiers, other feed the whole property. So long as the cold water storage tanks meet the requirements of Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations 1999 then it is permissible to supply Drinking Water from cold water storage tanks.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – LEISURE CENTRES
Leisure centres may have swimming pools, showers and probably spa baths too.
LAW Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations 1999 Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 1999 Health & Safety at Work Act 1974
LEGIONELLA TESTING – GYMS / FITNESS CENTRES
Due to the small footprint of gyms & fitness centres, the premises will probably have been former commercial or retail buildings which were subsequently converted (see Old & Refurbished Buildings). All will have showers which need to be descaled and disinfected every 3 months plus legionella screening to ensure the hygiene regime is effective.
BACTERIA TESTING – SWIMMING POOLS
Microbiological problems should be low in well managed swimming pools so long as the pH and residual disinfectant concentrations are correct. Routine sampling should be undertaken every month and/or before the pool is first used after a shut down for repairs. The normal tests are Colony (Plate) counts, commonly know as TVCs (total viable counts) plus Coliform bacteria, particularly Escherichia coli (E.coli).
LEGIONELLA TESTING – SPAS & JACUZZIS
Hot spa tubs and Jacuzzis operate at the perfect temperature for legionella to grow. Water jets generate an aerosol which is breathed in by the users. Good practice entails automatic dosing; testing the biocide levels every 2 hours and regular cleaning.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – FOOTBALL STADIUMS
For a few hours, once or twice every two weeks, the stadiums cater for thousands of people. At all other times, the numbers will be minimal. The hot and cold water systems need to large enough to cope with the huge demand, then maintenance procedures need to be robust enough to ensure the water quality does not deteriorate during the intervening period.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – SPORTS FIELDS
Changing facilities on sports fields, particularly showers, may only be used at weekends. Electric showers have a lower risk so long as they are descaled and disinfected regularly, whereas, showers fed from a stored hot water supply usually pose a much higher risk.
WATER QUALITY TESTING – EVENTS MANAGEMENT
The Events Management industry has grown substantially over the past decade whereby the ‘events’ have become more widespread and cater for greater numbers of people. Showgrounds and music festivals are typical examples where there are tens of thousands of visitors for a period of just a few days followed by months of inactivity.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – SHIPS & BOATS
Ships have extensive and complex water systems for potable water, seawater, sewage and fuel. The pipework for these systems is normally fitted into a relatively confined space, making them difficult to inspect, repair and maintain. The Port Authority is responsible for providing a safe drinking water supply to the ship which may be delivered via hoses, water boats or barges. Once onboard the ship’s officers assume responsibility.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – TRAINS
Water on trains is used for toilets/washing and catering. Water is taken onboard at ‘Carriage Filling Points’ which may be located at depots belonging to the train operator, its maintenance company or other third party.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – CARE HOMES
A significant proportion of Care Homes have undergone a ‘change of use’ from small hotels, large mansion houses or combining several adjacent houses into a larger property. In these situations the water systems have been substantially changed leaving redundant pipework and live deadlegs hidden below floorboards. Many Care Homes also extend to add additional bedrooms putting a strain on the existing hot water systems. Consequently the water systems in many Care Homes are classed as ‘Medium or High Risk’.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – HOSPITALS
Most older hospitals have to manage the legionella risk by keeping the concentration of the bacteria as low as possible. It is an accepted fact that many water systems within hospitals can never be ‘legionella free’ due to their complex water systems, age and regular refurbishments. Many hospitals cannot rely on temperature control to manage legionella and utilise other technologies such as chlorine dioxide.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – DENTISTS
In most cases a Dental practice is no different from a small office, it comprises relatively simple hot and cold water services. They do, however, have a water system specific to their profession, namely dental water lines. These produce the spray (& aerosol) used to flush during treatment procedures.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – DOCTOR’S SURGERIES
Traditional surgeries have simple water services which tend to be used on a regular basis. This makes them a lower risk than many other properties but many of the people who visit are in the ‘High Risk’ category which means they are the most susceptible to contract legionnaires’ disease.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – NURSERIES
Nurseries are not generally a high risk for Legionnaires’ disease since they do not normally have more than a one shower on the premises plus younger children are less likely to be included as ‘High Risk’. General hygiene, however, is paramount since it is so easy for faecal matter to be transferred from a child’s hand to a tap and then from that tap to other children.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – COLLEGES & UNIVERSITIES
These sites are far more complex, usually the original facility bears little resemblance to the present day layout. New buildings and refurbished departments will have been added so that the initial centralised water systems can no longer cope.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – RESIDENTIAL CAMPUS
Student accommodation blocks have enormous changes in water usage from month to month. Storage tanks and hot water systems need to be large enough to cope with peak demand and then lay idle for weeks. To minimise energy consumption the hot water may not be maintained during holiday periods allowing temperatures to reduce and legionella to thrive.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – HOTELS
Peak demand for hot water in the early morning and early evening can provide a stern test for the hot water supply. Older or inefficient systems may only provide luke-warm water at certain times of the day, this may be particularly apparent at the furthest outlets where water temperatures may never attain a high enough temperature to kill any legionella bacteria.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – HOLIDAY LETS
These often have intermittent use, there may be many weeks without visitors. The source for the hot water may well be isolated during these periods which allows bacterial growth. If there is a gap of 1 week of greater between bookings, the cold water should be thoroughly flushed and the hot water storage and distribution pipes be pasteurised (minimum 60°C at every outlet).
LEGIONELLA TESTING – CARAVAN & CAMPING SITES
Holiday sites have extensive pipework runs to communal toilets and showers. At certain times of the year the sites may be closed or have only a few users. Legionella prefer low usage or stagnant water and can grow to dangerous levels which makes infrequently used showers a high risk
LEGIONELLA TESTING – OFFICES
Most modern offices have simple water systems which represent a fairly low legionella risk. Older workplaces were designed for different times, for example 30 years ago Telephone Exchanges employed hundreds of staff. These workplaces required huge quantities of stored water for the canteens and toilets. Modern technology means these same buildings employ less than 10 people but the pipework to the disused canteen and redundant toilets still remain.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – RESIDENTIAL BLOCKS
It is common for tower blocks to have communal cold water storage, sometimes a central hot water system provides water for all the residents too. Problems can occur when some of the properties are empty or the tenants/owners are absent for extended periods. The lack of flow into just one property means that the hot water pipework cools sufficiently for legionella to proliferate, in time these bacteria can then affect the remainder of the building Testing for legionella on the flow and return can highlight low level contamination before the risk increases.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – INDUSTRIAL PREMISES
Industrial premises usually contain manufacturing processes in addition to offices. Many manufacturing processes involve water either in storage tanks or for cooling or spraying. If any of the process water has a temperature between 20°C – 45°C, then legionella bacteria can proliferate. The risk become greater if the process is intermittent, greater still if a cooling tower is used.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – OLD & REFURBISHED BUILDINGS
The older the building, the higher the risk since there is a greater chance of deadlegs, old metal pipes, meandering pipe runs, no recirculation of hot water etc. A building that is 200 years old has probably had 5-10 major refurbishments, in many cases this increases the risk rather than minimising it, see below.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – LANDLORDS
Landlords have a duty of care for the safety of their premises; this duty of care includes the safe supply of water. Where the Landlord holds the responsibly for maintenance or repair of the cold water storage tanks or hot water supply to buildings, then it is prudent to undertake routine laboratory analysis.
LEGIONELLA TESTING – VILLAGE HALLS
Most village halls have basic water systems which, if used several times each week, should not present a high risk. If the hall is used less frequently or has a hot water cylinder which is only heated as required, then there is the potential for legionella growth.
Author: +Duncan Hollis