What is backflow?
Backflow is the unwanted reversal of the correct direction of the water flow in a pipeline or plumbing system. Backflow is problematic because it can contaminate drinking water, making it unusable and dangerous.
Can it be prevented?
Yes. Backflow can be prevented using a device called a backflow preventer. These devices are installed into your plumbing system to block water from flowing backward. They are installed at the service entrance to a property and, if properly installed and maintained, will prevent contaminated water from flowing back into the community water system.
Do I need a backflow preventer?
Most likely, yes. There are a lot of reasons you might need a backflow preventer. In a number of communities the local water division might legally require you to install one. If you have any type of irrigation or sprinkler system, you are at an even higher risk of contaminating the water. Toxins like fertilizer and animal waste can pose a huge threat if allowed to seep back into the water supply. Not only is it possible to contaminate your personal drinking water, but the water supply of the entire community can be affected.
Won’t the water pressure prevent backflow?
Not always. Water pressure will usually force water out of your faucets and sprinklers and not allow it to flow backwards, but as you probably know, water pressure isn’t always consistent. Things like sprinklers, washing machines, nearby construction projects, or open fire hydrants can reduce the water pressure in your home. For example, if your sprinkler or irrigation system shuts off while you are using your kitchen sink, the pressure leading to your sink could increase, dragging the water from the sprinklers (which may have been exposed to toxic chemicals) into your drinking water.
For more information about backflow and backflow preventers, or to inquire about professional installation or repair for your sprinkler system or plumbing, contact the experts at Discount Service Co.