Emergencies happen, even if you take the best precautions. Facilities that work with caustic materials put workers at a greater risk of accidents than, say, an office building. Ensuring you have a reliable, industrial safety shower is imperative, and if you have a recirculating system within your safety shower, consider getting a self-contained gravity-fed system.
Now, you may think you don’t need to do any maintenance because of the system – and while it’s true it cuts way back on it, it doesn’t mean you can stop maintenance altogether. OSHA highlights the importance of keeping your safety shower/emergency eyewash stations maintained regularly. What does that mean when you have a safety shower recirculating system? We’ll answer that question in today’s blog, so hang tight.
What’s a Safety Shower Recirculating System?
Before we delve into answering the question of safety shower maintenance within a circulating system, let’s discuss what a circulating system is and why you should consider replacing one for a self-contained unit.
If you think about it, trying to keep a water pump or tank operating for multiple emergency fixtures and within the ANSI Z358.1 standard isn’t that easy – unless you have some way to recirculate the water. A water recirculation system is a plumbing system that moves water quickly to fixtures within a facility without relying on low water pressure, which is common in most water lines. If a safety shower has to be used for at least 20 minutes, that means consistent water pressure at the right temps. Having this type of system reduces energy, time, and conserves precious water, but you still have to do maintenance, so the optimal system includes a gravity-fed shower. According to statistics from the U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Census Bureau, between 400 billion and 1.3 trillion gallons are wasted each year, so any water you can save would benefit society.
Why Do I Need to Maintain a Recirculating System?
Just because there are several benefits to this type of system doesn’t mean it can’t turn faulty, so maintenance is still important. If the water pipes are poorly insulated, you can lose heat from the pipes. No one wants to be under cold water for that long, and in fact, it’s dangerous. Hypothermia can set in quickly, particularly if you’re already in cold conditions.
Any corrosion or buildup of minerals and such can keep the system from running properly and parts can be damaged or need repair or replacement, especially if they’re old. With a self-contained system, you reduce or eliminate these issues. Other benefits to a self-contained safety system include:
- Avoidance of high-cost underground piping, heat tracing, and insulation
- Assurance of gravity, which maintains the correct flow every time
- Plug and play system, meaning it doesn’t have to be fixed to a certain location
- Privacy from the enclosure
- No in-line expensive heaters feeding multiple showers
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If you’re in the business of finding a safety shower that’s also robust and yes, almost maintenance-free with our self-contained units, then give us a call at 855.747.9953. Our safety expert team will guide you to the perfect shower/eyewash unit that’s fully compliant with ANSI and OSHA, ensuring your workers get the best protection and privacy on-site.