Your property backflow prevention device is likely something you’ve never noticed or thought about. To understand what a backflow prevention device is and why it is so important to public health, first, you must understand what backflow even is.
Backflow is a reverse flow of water or any other liquid within a piping system that causes or is created because of a difference in pressures. This can be any foreign liquid, gasses, or substance that enters a potable (drinking water) distribution system.
There are many kinds of backflow prevention assemblies and each has a different application. The most effective and common form of backflow prevention is air gap separation. This can be seen in restaurants with floor sinks and is the reason all sink drains are cut above the floor sink and not piped inside of it.
Other forms of backflow prevention devices that may be on your property are located after the city water meter, attached fire sprinkler lines, and irrigation systems. Each county will require annual testing of these backflows to ensure they are in proper working order.
Annual backflow testing will be required by your municipality. Not just anyone can test or repair a backflow, they have to obtain certificates recognized by the state and must be retested annually to continue working on backflows. With this certificate, the backflow prevention assembly tester can then test a backflow using a test gauge.
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