Collect condensate from air-cons to save water

Collect condensate from air-cons to save water

When it comes to water conservation, there is one area that should be carefully considered - extracting or conserving water condensation from air-conditioners ("The future of world's water supply"; June 2).

To cool the air, air-conditioners dehumidify it and remove the moisture as a condensate.

Though condensate water is basically distilled water, it may not be potable and requires treatment prior to drinking.

Factories and other large buildings generally recycle condensate for cooling towers, but condensate from air-cons in homes goes down the drain.

A single fan-coil from an air-con system can produce 20 litres to 80 litres of condensate water a day.

This could go up to millions of litres in a large condominium.

It would be wise to find ways to tap this huge amount of water and put it to good use.

It may not be feasible to retrofit air-con systems in existing buildings.

Hence, I suggest that the Building and Construction Authority, building planners and architects fit the air-con systems in new buildings with water condensate drainage pipes that are diverted to a collection area.

This could be made mandatory for all future air-con installations.

The water collected can be used for swimming pools, plant maintenance, washing and so on.

Letter by Eddy Lauw Thian Hock

This article was first published on June 10, 2014.
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