Legionella & Your Cooling Tower


The bacterium Legionella is responsible for causing a harmful lung infection known as Legionnaires' disease. This is a major concern for any industrial or commercial facility that utilizes a Cooling Tower for its processes.

Close-up of bacteria we found through Legionella testingThe genus Legionella are Gram-negative, rod-shaped bacteria. The bacteria grow best in warm water conditions, such as the environment of a Cooling Tower. Legionella is of great concern to any industrial or commercial facility that utilizes a Cooling Tower for its processes. This bacteria is spread through droplet transmission, which means water vapor or mist containing the bacteria is inhaled. It is not spread from person to person. The infection causes pneumonia that can be very serious to those with a weakened immune system due to old age, smoking habits, or a chronic lung disease (COPD or emphysema). Legionnaires’ disease is difficult to diagnose at first because of its similarity to other forms of pneumonia. Some symptoms of Legionnaires’ disease are cough, shortness of breath, headaches, high fever, and muscle aches. Legionnaire’s disease is most prevalent during the summer months when Cooling Towers are at peak operation. Sadly, people are infected and die from this bacteria every year.

Preventing Legionella Growth

The only way to prevent your industrial or commercial facility from harboring Legionella, is a top tier water treatment program. Chardon Laboratories provides the water treatment program necessary to prevent growth of Legionella bacteria in Cooling Towers. Our biocide chemical, routine testing, and service are your best chance at preventing a Legionella outbreak in your facility.  

Legionnaires