The Importance of Shower head Cleaning Legionella
Regularly cleaning your shower head is essential for preventing the growth of Legionella bacteria. Shower heads can become a breeding ground for bacteria, especially in warm environments where they can produce aerosols. Legionella bacteria can easily spread through shower heads, posing a significant risk to the water system.
To prevent the growth of bacteria and the accumulation of scale, it is essential to regularly disinfect and clean shower heads and hoses. According to HSG 274 Part 2 guidelines, which suggest dismantling, cleaning, and descaling removable parts, heads, inserts, and hoses every three months to ensure the safety and hygiene of your shower. However, it is important to note that the frequency of cleaning may vary depending on the rate of fouling or other risk factors. Especially in areas with high-risk patients.
The Importance of Understanding the Causes of Legionella in Shower Head Cleaning
By understanding the causes of Legionella growth on shower heads and taking proactive measures to clean and disinfect them regularly, you can help maintain a safe and healthy showering environment.
- Stagnation – The hose pipe attaching a shower head to the water system can hold stagnated water for potentially long periods of time if not flushed through regularly. Stagnated water helps Legionella to grow so water stagnated in the hose or in any dead legs/ends in the system are an added risk.
- Water temperature – To effectively monitor and control Legionella growth, it is important to maintain temperatures outside of the ideal range of 20 to 40°C. In order to reduce the risk of scalding, the hot water supplied to showers should be at least 50°C, with the use of a mixer valve (TMV) to introduce cooler water. In larger complexes like hotels or care homes, where water may have to travel long distances through pipes, it is crucial to prevent the water from cooling down before reaching the shower, as this can create an environment conducive to Legionella growth.
- Limescale – The limescale, sludge and rust that can build up on a shower head is the perfect breeding ground for Legionella. It gives them nutrients that help the bacteria to survive and, in some cases, protect them from any chlorine in the water.
Shower Head Cleaning and Legionella: How We Can Help
The good news is that this can be easily managed. If you have concerns about your water system, the first thing you can do is carry out a Legionella Risk Assessment. The Legionella risk assessment will address all systems where water is used or stored, analyse risk factors, and consider the potential of the system to become contaminated with Legionella. If there is a risk, shower heads will need to be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected or possibly replaced and the outlets will need to be flushed on a regular basis to reduce the risk of water stagnation (this can easily be done in-house).
If you are concerned about the presence of Legionella bacteria in your showerheads, Techright Environmental can assist you. Importantly, we offer Legionella Risk Assessments to evaluate the potential risk and provide solutions. Additionally, our services include providing showerhead cleaning kits and conducting in-house training for your staff. Furthermore, we will equip them with the necessary knowledge and tools to effectively dismantle, clean, and descale removable parts, heads, inserts, and hoses. Finally, we can provide your staff with quarterly showerhead sheets to ensure regular maintenance and monitoring.
Contact us today to have a conversation about your legionella needs and requirements. Also we can also discuss the significance of shower head cleaning in controlling and preventing the growth of legionella bacteria.