Hot water clyinder, health risk

The Hawke’s Bay District Health is warning people against turning down their hot water cylinders to save money after two people contracted Legionnaires disease from water in their own homes.

Here are some key points for a media report about the matter.

– The most common sources of Legionella are hot water cylinders and garden hose-pipes. It can also be contracted from some soils or composts.

– It can be contracted through inhalation of steam while showering.

– The bacteria thrives in the range of 32 – 44C. It can’t grow at around 50C and higher and is killed almost instantaneously at 70C.

– The Building Code requires hot water systems to be capable of being controlled to prevent the growth of legionella bacteria. To achieve this, the storage water heater thermostat must be set to a minimum temperature of 60C.