Having clean water in your home is an essential part of everyday life.  It’s important that you look after your water systems, to help prevent you from getting ill.

Most water systems, like taps, showers, tanks, heaters etc will contain some bacteria. Normally the bacteria won't cause any problems. However in the right conditions it can multiply, increasing the chances of you becoming ill.

One of the most common bacteria that can multiply in water systems is Legionella

This is the bacteria that causes Legionnaire's disease, a lung infection you can catch by inhaling droplets of water.

It's an uncommon disease but anyone can get it. The risk increases if you:

  • Are over 45 years of age
  • Are a smoker or heavy drinker
  • Suffer from a chronic respiratory or kidney disease
  • Are diabetic or have a lung or heart disease
  • Have an impaired immune system

How to prevent it

Legionella bacteria doesn’t usually cause any problems but here’s how you can help to keep bacteria numbers low and help keep you safe

  • Descale your taps and shower heads at least every three months. Any household descaling product will do the trick
  • Keep hot water in tanks and cylinders at a minimum of 60°C
  • Water from hot taps should be at a minimum temperature of 50°C. (You shouldn't be able to hold your hand under the tap for a period of time). Please be aware of the risk of scalding
  • If you've been away for some time, run your taps/shower for a couple of minutes to flush through any stagnant water
  • Make sure taps that aren't regularly used, such as taps in outside toilets and gardens, are flushed regularly

Report it

If you have any concerns about your water temperatures, low water flow, taps that aren’t working properly, boiler issues or anything unusual coming from your taps then please let us know.