Backflow is dangerous, contaminating water systems and harming our health and environment. It occurs when contaminated water is introduced into a potable water system. Knowing how it happens can help you prevent it from happening in the first place.

1. Improperly Installed Backflow Preventers

The plumbing repair experts installing the preventer must consider the system’s water pressure and require more knowledge of the applicable local codes and standards for installation, performance, backflow inspections, and maintenance.

Issues such as incorrect pipe sizing or improper alignment can lead to leakages or unnecessary stress on the pipes that may result in fallout because of increased pressure. The connections for lines must also be secure so that no contaminants can enter the main water supply, which can be achieved with a strong sealant utilized during installation.

Unprofessional valve installation risks your safety and presents a huge liability issue for property owners and service providers.

2. Inadequate Air Gaps

An air gap is a physical separation between a point of supply and the receiving vessel. When this distance between the two does not meet the necessary criteria, there will be an increased likelihood of backflow.

For it to be correctly maintained, it should typically be at least twice as high as the water being supplied and have a minimum distance of one inch between it and any potential cross-connection.

To ensure the proper installation, individuals must consult with their plumbing repair experts for guidance on how to best protect their water systems from contamination due to outflow from other sources. Plumbing Experts offers professional plumbing services in Broward, including inspections and emergency plumbing services.

3. Cross-connections

This occurs when non-potable water or other water sources are connected to a potable water supply line. This means potentially polluted water can flow into the clean potable water line, creating contamination risks.

Cross-connections can be made by incorrectly installed gardening equipment, hoses, piping connections that connect drinking and irrigation lines and other fixtures like sinks and toilets.

To prevent them and the subsequent backflow risks, install the correct components in different sequences and ensure that all hoses and pipes are of the correct length for their purpose and safely contained.

4. Failure to Test Backflow Preventers

If the pressure drops in the public water supply or rises in any of the connected systems, these devices will be triggered and begin to prevent backflow from occurring.

Your plumbing services provider must regularly test these devices for proper functioning and maintenance. If not, they may fail when needed, that is, during a high-flow event or when a dramatic pressure drop suddenly occurs.

Backflow inspections may vary depending on the type of system and installation but should be completed at least annually to ensure all components are operating as intended.

Follow this protocol to avoid poor water quality and unsafe wastewater conditions as contaminants can return to a clean water supply if backflows are not appropriately prevented.

5. Improper Surface Grading Around the Pipe

When the ground slopes away from the pipe instead of toward it, it can create improper drainage and allow water to back up along the pipes.

This is especially problematic when it causes debris such as dirt and leaves to build up around the pipeline, clogging it and reducing its flow capacity, which can further contribute to backflow issues.

It’s essential to properly level the landscape before installing piping systems to ensure that this kind of issue doesn’t arise and put those relying on piped water supply at risk.

Backflow is a serious problem that needs to be addressed and mitigated. Common mistakes happen when people don’t pay enough attention to the need for proper installation, testing, and maintenance of backflow prevention devices and systems. Contract Plumbing Experts if you have any questions or worries regarding our services. We would love to answer any queries regarding plumbing services in Broward.