What Is A Backflow Preventer?

Posted on: 29 June 2017

You never want to hear your plumber say that you have problems with backflow. That means that you have a problem with things coming back up into your potable water system and contaminating it. To fix it, you need to have a new backflow preventer installed. 

Backflow Preventer

Generally, your water system has enough pressure to be able to run water through your various fixtures with no problems or no risk of anything flowing back into your system. However, there are times that your system doesn't have enough pressure to keep out backflow. Usually, those happen because of external forces. For example, if there is a fire and multiple hydrants in your area are in use, it can mess with your water pressure. That could cause contaminants to get into your water if you didn't have a backflow preventer. This is a device that is installed on your incoming water supply line, generally on your side of the water meter. 

How They Work

The prevention devices are valves, and they work pretty easily. In fact, they could be likened to the valves that are in the veins in your leg which are designed to keep blood flowing in one direction. The prevention devices are placed on your water main. When you turn on the water in your house, water gets pulled through the lines. The water from the main line comes in through your water meter, and then through the backflow preventer, and then into the main line of your house, and out into your faucets. Since the valves are one-way valves, if something tries to flow back into your system, then the valve just won't open. You can have more than one backflow preventer device on your system if you like. You can have one for your main line, but if you have irrigation systems or a sprinkler system, you may want to have one installed in between those systems and your house system. There is a risk that you may have some kind of backflow from inside the system like that, especially if you are using a lot of chemicals in your yard. 

You want to do everything you can to make sure that you have fresh, clean water to drink. Making sure that you have a backflow prevention device installed in your plumbing system will go a long way toward making sure that your water is clean whenever you turn on your faucet. Contact a plumbing company, like Bintrim Plumbing & Heating , for more help.