The past few months have been really tough, the COVID-19 situation has created a worldwide panic and chaos and have also created a mess. Now slowly all of us are trying to go back to normal and starting to open our facilities and businesses again. Business owners and government officials also have an eagerness to go back to our normal lives during early 2020. The COVID-19 outbreak is showing signs of slowing down, but a new risk is also prevalent which the risk of reopening dormant buildings with stagnant water systems. Many weeks of low flow, zero flow, and tempered water can result in leaching heavy metals, microbiological growth, and corrosion within our plumbing systems. As you all know that WATTS is the global leader in offering best in class water solutions for industrial, residential, commercial and municipal settings, their offered solutions are hugely focused on HVAC, drainage and plumbing, flow control and hot water. They have committed to serving as a resource for commercial businesses as slowly buildings are beginning to reopen their doors.

In order to maintain, water safety and quality in plumbing systems of completely unused or slightly used buildings, a summary of steps should be taken by building water management which is defined by several industry experts and organizations like the International Association of Plumbing & Mechanical Professionals (IAPMO) and others. Watts is here to talk about some important points which are required to be followed in order to make the reopening process entirely safe.

Planning -

  • List out the protection measures which are required to be taken by visitors and staff.
  • Hire or consult a water quality expert.
  • Discuss with the technicalities with our local water utility.

Prepare a map of your plumbing system

Sketch out the building water system to the best of your ability before the initial flush and identify the low-use water outlets. In a unidirectional process that starts at the point-of-entry, or your water supply, map out your flushing regime to the peripheral distal points and also point of use outlets like showerheads and faucets. The water supply is often designed in zones and branches in large buildings like the different wings. Conventionally, each wing or set of branches are served by the same riser. You should always begin with the outlet that is closest to the water supply while you are mapping out your plumbing systems and gradually proceed to the most distal outlets. The flushing regime should include the entire recirculating loop along this route, all associated equipment and appliances, both cold and hot water, eyewash stations, therapy pools, water features, showerheads, ice machines, hot tubs, and all outlets including faucets.

Create a flushing and cleaning regime

Flushing clear out the low-quality accumulates water which has arrived during low uses and replaces it with fresh rich quality water from the municipal supply. This makes it very important. The loss of protective scale along with biofilm growth which emerged while the water was stagnant. These conditions proliferate the growth of Legionella and other waterborne pathogens which creates an environment of heightened risk for those who have compromised immune systems. Proper flushing is a multi-step process that includes initial flush, sequenced flushing, testing and monitoring, cleaning of fixtures and equipment, and additional flushing is also required. Before resuming normal building operations, initial flushing and cleaning need to be completed. Sooner you start the flushing, the better it will be. If it is possible, you need to have your staff starting the flush now even if the reopening of the building date is still unknown. The more early, the flushing regime is initiated, the sooner will the water quality return to it's normal. Before flushing, you can conduct appropriate training for staff and also provide them with PPE (Personal Protective Equipment).

If you are planning to reopen your building facilities in the Middle East, then call us as we along with WATT can provide you further help and all types of consultation and services.