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A backflow prevention device is used to protect potable water supplies from contamination or pollution due to backflow.

In water supply systems, water is normally maintained at a significant pressure to enable water to flow from the tap, shower, or other fixture. Water pressure may fail or be reduced when a water main bursts, pipes freeze, or there is unexpectedly high demand on the water system (for example, when several fire hydrants are opened). Reduced pressure in the pipe may allow contaminated water from the soil, from storage, or from other sources to be drawn up into the system.

To prevent contamination due to back pressure, many health regulatory regimes require a backflow prevention assembly between the delivery point of mains water and local storage or use. Where submerged mains inflow is permitted, a backflow prevention assembly is required, which protects the potable water system from contamination hazards. A check valve is a basic form of backflow prevention, but often more complex devices are required because check valves are not considered to be reliable, when compared to more sophisticated devices with redundancies and reduced-pressure zones.

In many countries. approved backflow prevention assemblies are required by law, and must be installed in accordance with plumbing or building codes. A typical backflow assembly has test cocks and shut-off valves, and must be tested when installed, if relocated or repaired, and also on a periodic basis.

In the US, 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. In most cases, the law requires a double check (DC), reduced pressure principle device (RP) device, or an air gap when backflow prevention is mandated.

If your local water purveyor is requesting that a backflow assembly be install on your property, please contact us, so that we can provide you with a quote.