If you own or operate a business that utilizes a cooling tower or condenser, you are likely aware that the local and state government regulate the use of these machines.
This generally includes regular inspections of the facility and its equipment to ensure that the cooling tower is functioning as intended. However, you can also experience a wide range of benefits (beyond simple regulatory compliance) for keeping your tower regularly inspected and maintained.
The Reasons Why Legionella Inspection Is Required
The reason that Legionella inspection is a requirement and not merely a suggestion is because of the potential of the Legionella bacteria to cause widespread and significant harm to humans. This gram-negative microorganism lives in tepid water, typically between 77 degrees and 108 degrees Fahrenheit. Cooling towers often operate in ranges similar to this as they conduct their regular heat exchange.
When Legionella bacteria are permitted to grow unchecked, they quickly proliferate. As the cooling tower operates, it produces steam and mist during heat exchange; water droplets containing Legionella are then expelled into the air, where they remain lightweight and can float for miles from their point of origin.
A Legionella contaminated droplet drifting through the air may be inhaled by a human, and from there, the bacteria can begin causing issues quickly. While many will experience Pontiac fever, which manifests similarly to the flu, some will be unlucky enough to fall ill with Legionnaires’ disease.
This sickness causes sudden and severe inflammation in the lungs, and it can be fatal if not treated immediately. But because Legionella can drift so far, the cause of this unexpected pneumonia can be difficult to ascertain, and medical treatment may be delayed; up to 10% of those affected die from Legionnaires’ disease.
Legionella’s risks to the general public inform local and state governments’ decisions to regulate cooling towers. In fact, cooling towers are some of the most frequent causes of a Legionnaires’ outbreak.
How You Can Benefit from an Inspection
Regular inspection of your cooling tower keeps you out of trouble in terms of compliance and possible fines. However, it also offers a wide variety of benefits that can improve not only your bottom line but the overall function of your business and its role in the community.
Reduced Equipment Costs
One of the most important additional benefits of Legionella inspections for your tower is that it helps to reveal the overall health and maintenance state of your machinery.
A Legionella inspection will sample the water and evaluate its quality and composition. If you discover during this process that Legionella has been growing or that your water is corrosive, you can tackle the issue early by developing a water treatment plan to keep your tower in good health.
When the water is clean and free of bacterial growth, you will experience less fouling and better performance. This means an extended life for your cooling tower, avoiding the cost of equipment repair and even premature replacement.
You will also potentially see changes in your utility bill as biocides in the water meant to remove Legionella prevent biofilms and other damaging issues from arising and clogging filters. A clean machine works more efficiently and uses less energy.
A Safer Building and Surrounding Area
Another significant benefit of regular Legionella inspection is that you can be sure that you are doing your part to keep your building and the local area safe. In addition, part of a comprehensive Legionella inspection is a review of your emergency plans, which dictate what to do if Legionella should become a problem.
By using these opportunities to review your strategies and proactively work with professionals, you can improve the safety of your facility and even reduce your environmental impact by making smart choices that keep your community a beautiful and safe place.
Work with the Water Treatment and Legionella Experts
Whether you are just developing a robust Legionella prevention plan for the first time or need someone with experience to conduct a Legionella inspection of your facility, be sure that you forge relationships with reliable experts specifically trained to recognize the risks and solutions for Legionella bacteria.
The professionals at Legionella Compliance Solutions can assist you with abiding by all local and state regulations and keeping your facility safe and highly functional.
Reach out to schedule an appointment with an experienced technician so that you can establish a thorough and comprehensive Legionella prevention plan that keeps people safe and shields you from fines for noncompliance. We would be happy to evaluate and discuss the unique risk factors present in your system.