4 Quick Tips for Clean Water

water photo03.05.14

Written by: Selective Micro Technologies 

Did you know that the type of algae present in a water system is also a determinant of the water quality? It’s true, and this also means that regular cleaning and decontamination maintenance of beverage and water systems is necessary in order to avoid atrophic water reservoirs, distribution loops, tanks, hoses, pipes, etc. Moreover, the presence of bio-slime, a mix of extracellular secretions and microorganisms, are prevalent in nearly any setting, especially those near or within water sources.

The problem with algae and bio-slime is that once colonies adhere to a surface it becomes increasingly difficult to dislodge and remove the micro-organic matrices. Ozone is a more commonly recognized and used biocide for water system decontamination, plus as an oxidizer, is very powerful at disrupting bio-slime complexes and eliminating pathogens. However, concomitant with its ability to oxidize also negates a power of selectivity; in other words, while ozone is a very strong oxidizer, it has relatively low stability because it is so aggressive (it kills pathogens but also your system and materials too!). An ability to effectively penetrate and eliminate the extracellular secretions residing within the bio-slime matrix is further accompanied by high levels of material corrosion, potential disinfection byproducts, and use safety issues. 

This is true for not only ozone but also chlorine bleach and peracetic acid. A more desirable choice for system decontamination is pure chlorine dioxide (ClO2). Unlike chlorine bleach, in that pure chlorine dioxide is an oxidizer and unlike ozone in that pure chlorine dioxide presents superior material compatibility, pure ClO2 is a superior choice for system maintenance.  It is not only able to eradiate unwanted bio-slime and unnecessary algae, but does so at very low concentrations and at a level where corrosion will never ensue.

4 Quick Tips for Clean Water 

1) Verify what type of maintenance is currently employed at your facility. For ozone, identify material compatibility as it measures against recommended use. The more ozone that is used, the more likely one will be required to replace elastomers, tubing, and some metals and/or plastics.

2) Regularly inspect for presence of micro-organics residing within a water system. Inspection can be analytically aided with use of water swans or detection paddles. For more, see: http://www.millipore.com/userguides/tech1/p15325

3) Treat water or beverage system regularly at low dose concentrations. A shock treatment should be performed 1-12 times annually depending upon usage, flow rate, and choice of biocide used for system decontamination.

4) Avoid use of impure chlorine dioxide products as such products not only present very weak efficacy, but are overloaded in corrosive oxychloro species that will harm your