Prevent Deadly Water Heater Diseases

Legionnaires’ Disease can be fatal and the standing hot water in a conventional water tank creates an ideal environment for it to thrive and reproduce. A tankless water heater has no standing water eliminating the threat posed by the deadly disease. Don’t take chances with your family’s health, install a tankless system and ensure they’re safe.

If you read a checklist of energy-saving tips its very likely to includes a recommendation to turn the temperature of your water heater down from 140°F (60°C) to 120°F(49°C), including these popular websites — TreeHugger and Planet Green — Yet when seeking an opinion from industry professionals they will tell you never to set your heater below 140F, as it can become a sort of petri dish for Legionnaires Disease.

Legionella pneumophila (Legionnaires Disease) is an aquatic organism that thrives in warm environments. The disease was first identified in Philadelphia in 1976 after 34 veterans died attending an American Legion Convention.

The important thing to know is that the bacteria that causes Legionnaires Disease are very temperature sensitive.

  • 70 to 80 °C (158 to 176 °F): Disinfection range
  • At 66 °C (151 °F): Legionellae die within 2 minutes
  • At 60 °C (140 °F): Legionellae die within 32 minutes
  • At 55 °C (131 °F): Legionellae die within 5 to 6 hours
  • Above 50 °C (122 °F): They can survive but do not multiply
  • 35 to 46 °C (95 to 115 °F): Ideal growth range
  • 20 to 50 °C (68 to 122 °F): Legionellae growth range
  • Below 20 °C (68 °F): Legionellae can survive but are dormant

Hydro Quebec has found that even at 60 °C – the setting on most electric water heaters – an estimated 25% of all water heaters are contaminated by legionella bacteria in Canada.  This is a staggering statistic. But why are more people not contracting the disease?  Well it can simply be left to chance, the bacteria most often enter the lungs due to aspiration (aspiration means choking such that secretions in the mouth bypass the choking reflexes and enter the lung) and thus drinking contaminated water is not a major cause of Legionnaire’s disease.

A conventional tank draws hot water from the top and adds cold water to the bottom providing a continuous reservoir for this disease.  When cold water is injected it lowers the temperature making it idea for the bacteria to multiply.  A tankless is a different system all together, tankless water heaters have no standing water and this no place for the bacteria to take refuge.  In addition a tankless system completely flushes itself every time the hot water is used in your house maintaining a clean bacteria free environment.

Legionnaires Disease can be deadly and affects both children and elderly more so than others, a tankless water heater is a great solution for this problem. If your at all interested in seeing if a tankless is right for your home give us a call or fill out the form on the side and we will get back to you.

 

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