Plumbing During a Pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic has caused businesses and organizations to adjust to many things on the fly. This includes maintaining a building so that its essential components do not fail or degrade. Utilities such as electric, gas, and plumbing require a smart approach during this difficult time. Plumbing, perhaps most of all, needs some attention when a building is vacant or nearly vacant for months at a time. Gaskets dry out. Pipes can still leak or burst. Water heaters can be wasting energy. There is even the chance that stagnant water in pipes, sinks, toilet bowls, and fixtures can increase the risk of disease.

The Risk of Legionnaires’ Disease

This disease is caused by a bacteria and results in a serious respiratory illness. According to the CDC, as many as one in ten people with the disease can die from it. Buildings that have shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic and that have stagnant water in the plumbing system may be susceptible to a buildup of the disease-causing bacteria.

Buildings are slowly starting to reopen, meaning water will be flowing through their pipes once again. If the bacteria is present, it will begin to spread.  Fortunately, there are some possible solutions:

  • Treating water systems with a small amount of disinfectant
  • Flushing out old water and bringing in new water
  • Contacting a qualified plumbing contractor

The Need for Caution

Property managers and custodial departments should exercise caution when reopening buildings. Special care should be given to the state of the plumbing system. It’s important that people reach out to local health authorities, but they should also understand that guidelines may not adequately address each situation. For help on reopening a business in southern California, contact Andersen Commercial Plumbing by calling 909-326-2729 or emailing us today.