Legionella can be the bane of any business; especially caravan parks. Often festering in air conditioning and central heating systems, Legionella is the primary bacteria that causes Legionnaires’ Disease; a type of pneumonia.
A source of relief is that Legionella isn’t incredibly common, though it never hurts to be prepared. For those conscious of the risk, most of your problems will come from a few specific spots within a caravan or a caravan park that should always be addressed and considered.
As experts specialising in energy meters at caravan parks, Energy Controls has seen its fair share of potential spots for Legionella so staff there know just how to prevent Legionella.
• Checking the boiler: The boiler should be one of the first spots you check for preventative measures. If guests haven’t used it for some time then drain and flush the system before use, whereas if you don’t anticipate use for a while then simply drain and flush the system until it’s needed. For those using a boiler frequently or at the time of a check, a vital step is to follow the pipes. Ensure that the temperature of the water going from the boiler, all the way to the taps, is generally 60°C. If it’s much lower than this, or comes out cold, you’ll need to deal with the boiler itself by contacting the supplier.
• Descale & disinfect showerheads: The aerosol from showers could spread Legionella so the hose, insert and showerhead should be thoroughly cleaned, descaled and disinfected.
Legionella can build up within just over a week or so, so if a shower hasn’t been used for this amount of time you should at least wash it out; first by letting it run hot water for a minute, then letting it run cold water for another minute.
• Removing limescale build-up from water cylinders and calorifiers: Limescale can build up in any type of water cylinder or calorifier. The degree and speed of a build-up can vary greatly from place to place, what with different regions possessing different types and qualities of water, but either way this build-up can result in an inefficient water flow and weakened temperature capabilities.
These both create a potential setting for Legionella to thrive, and so removing the limescale via chemical cleaning is essential; especially if the water cylinder or califorifier hasn’t been maintained for a while. There is also the bonus of an improved energy efficiency, reducing costs overall.
• Keeping pools and hot tubs clean: Those enjoying a luxurious stay at caravan parks with the likes of pools and hot tubs may also be concerned about the possibility of Legionella.Hot tubs are often between 30°C and 35°C; serving as the perfect environment for Legionella.The aerosol from the jets in these hot tubs are the areas of concern yet, much like the method of preventing Legionella in showers, the preventative measures in hot tubs include a sensible approach to cleaning and regular maintenance. Regular efforts to drain, disinfect and clean the hot tub should be taken, especially in public areas.
A similar approach to cleaning and disinfecting pools is also an essential for preventing Legionella. However, thanks to the lower temperature and the fact that all pools should regularly feature chlorine, it’s unlikely that Legionella will be able to develop within this environment.
So long as you keep these essential areas in mind you should have no problem keeping on top of Legionella and Legionnaires’ Disease, allowing guests to enjoy their holidays.