Susquehanna Fire Equipment Company Provides:
- ASSE Certified Technicians
- Annual Inspections
Protect the Quality of Your Drinking Water
What is backflow and what does it have to do with my drinking water?
Backflow means the undesirable reversal of flow of a liquid, gas or suspended solid into the potable water supply; a backflow preventer is designed to keep this from happening. Points at which a potable water system connects with a non-potable water system are called cross connections. Such connections occur naturally in appliances such as clothes washers and dishwashers, but they must be carefully designed and installed to prevent backflow. Another common location for a backflow preventer is the connection of a fire sprinkler system to a water main, to prevent pressurized water from flowing from the fire suppression system into the main water supply.
How can that happen?
At uncontrolled cross-connections, or any actual or potential connection between the public water supply and your water supply. The following scenarios can create a reverse flow of water at any uncontrolled cross-connection which mixes the public water with your water. When flushing water lines, firefighters using the water, a water main break, a partial vacuum or a vacuum can all create the reverse of water flow creating backflow.
How do you prevent water contamination from backflow?
By using a mechanical plumbing device which prevents the water from flowing back into the water system. The type of device depends on the category of hazard that could potentially get into the water supply.
A typical backflow assembly has text cocks and shut-off valves and must be tested each year, if relocated or repaired, and when installed.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) holds local water suppliers responsible for maintaining a certain amount of purity in potable water systems. Many states and/or local municipalities require annual testing of backflow prevention assemblies. A check valve is a common form of backflow prevention.