The longer you are in the aquatics business, the more you realize that some national, state, and local regulations are not very well communicated. But, as with all regulations, lack of knowledge does not excuse lack of compliance. This is especially true if there were an accident that was caused or worsened in part due to your not following a particular regulation.
Thousands of CES customers over the past 35-years have used Co2 (Carbon Dioxide Gas) as their primary source of pH correction. Why? When we started using Co2 in the late 1980s it became very popular, quickly, as it was used to neutralize the high pH influence of larger bleach feed systems. Bleach as you probably know has a pH between 12 and 13, depending on whom you listen to, and depending on type, process, manufacturer, etc. Since we optimally need to maintain the pH at about 7.5 (code approved range is 7.2-7.8) then we’re going to need to introduce an acid of SOME type.
Co2 was very inexpensive (not as much now), came in large storage vessels that were refilled on a schedule (like the local fast food joint) and averted the need for large amounts of muriatic acid which, improperly used and stored, would tend to mess up the equipment room metallic surfaces. While we have resolved many of the pitfalls of using acid when we introduced a more pH-neutral, All-in-One tablet, and our CES UDA™ Utlra Dilute Acid feed package, the use of Co2 has lessened a bit but is still a popular alternative.
But, did you know that there are requirements to install a Co2 gas leak detector and alert system on every Co2 installation? Well… many folks didn’t. Why the concern? Co2 inhalation can be minimally toxic with minimal exposure, causing headaches and drowsiness. At higher levels, rapid breathing, increased cardiac output and stress, elevated blood pressure and even some arrhythmias may occur. At extremly high concentrations, Co2 can help deplete oxygen in the space, and it can lead to death by suffocation. This is a somewhat rare occurrence, but not a good result when inhaling a colorless, odorless, and non-flammable gas.
In order to supply a complete solution to your facility needs, CES has researched and evaluated the alternatives, and is offering a Co2 alert and alarm solution that meets OSHA and code requirements. We’ve been installing these for years in California where adherence to codes is more prevalent, and have since provided this solution on some other projects where the inspector “went by the book”.
We are now proactively recommending the installation of these devices on all facilites that utilize Co2.
The CES Co2 Gas Safety Monitor and alerting system is comprised of a main control panel with status display, a Co2 sensor, and a strobe-alarm component. In equipment rooms with multiple levels or pits, there may need to be several sensors installed, as Co2 is heavier than air and would tend to sink to lower elevations.
Basic installation is completed by CES technicians, and your facility engineer can provide any special electrical requirements.
Please contact your CES rep for additional information and to arrange an installation pre-site. We can also provide budget costs and installation timetable for your needs.
We know that education is the key to responsible and safe facility operation, and we’re here to assist in any way possible.