Safe water supplies and good water management are fundamental to good health. This information provides practical advice and guidance to control the risks from exposure to Legionella within your home.
Legionella & legionnaires
As your landlord, it is our responsibility to make sure you know the causes and symptoms of Legionnaires’ disease.
What is legionella?
Legionella is the name of harmful bacteria that can build up in your water system, including on taps and shower heads. Breathing in this bacteria can cause Legionnaires’ disease.
Who is at risk?
The elderly or people with chest or lung problems are most at risk.
Although anybody can contract Legionnaires’ disease, not everyone that comes into contact with Legionella bacteria becomes ill. Legionnaires’ disease is not contagious.
Seek medical advice by calling 111 if you have a bad cough and:
- it doesn’t go away
- you can’t breathe properly
- you have severe chest pain
- you have a high temperature or feel hot and shivery
- you feel like you have severe flu
There is no need to worry – Legionnaires’ disease is easily preventable if you follow our common-sense advice. If you have any concerns about your heating system, such as your hot water not heating properly, please contact us immediately.
- Keep the hot water on your boiler system at a temperature of 50 - 60°C or greater. WARNING: BE AWARE OF SCALDING.
- Run taps and other outlets that haven’t been used for more than seven days for five minutes, particularly showers and other low-use outlets.
- Clean shower heads and taps regularly to keep them free from limescale, mould and algae growth.
- Drain hose pipes after use. Run and flush through before filling paddling pools, etc.
- Make sure there aren’t any places on your property where water can build up and stay still.
- Report any damage to any part of the water system or if you notice discoloration or debris of your water by contacting us using the details here.
- Call us if you think that the temperature of your cold water is above 20°C
- Flush toilet/s with the lid down following a period of non-use
- Keep spas and hot tubs clean and free from dirt and debris and check and clean the filters – change the water before use if it is not used often.
- Additional Information regarding water hygiene (legionella) and the safe practises can be found on the Health and safety executive website under the Legionnaires section - HSE - Legionella and Legionnaires' disease
- We have carried out an assessment of the water systems (hot and cold) within all homes and where necessary put in place a management system and inspection programme to continue to minimise the risk.
- We provide training and instruction to our staff and trades so that they are aware of the hazards of water hygiene (Legionella) and the methods of control to continue to minimise any risk.