All About Backflow Preventers
In 2002, the EPA released information about previous backflow contaminations that caused devastation to communities. They stated that "from 1981 to 1998, the CDC documented 57 waterborne disease outbreaks related to cross-connections, resulting in 9,734 illnesses." By cross-connection, the EPA and CDC are simply referring to backflow.
At Backflow Paradise Inc., we offer all backflow services to keep your backflow assembly functioning properly. To learn more, give us a call at 623-297-9703 to speak with a backflow expert and schedule your first hassle-free Backflow Paradise Inc. backflow installation or backflow testing.
What is Backflow?
Backflow is known in the plumbing and water treatment world as pollution of a clean water line due to contaminated water flowing back to the original source or in reversal. It is caused typically by "back siphonage," when there is a pressure drop somewhere in the water line to where a suction rather than a push is achieved. Simply put, water is being sucked back through water lines rather than being pushed out normally. This means all of the cross-connections on your property, for example, dishwashers and water purifiers, will backflow and send the dirty water back into the initially safe potable water. Other means of backflow occur during "back pressure," when the pressure on the wastewater systems is greater than the freshwater supply. This is normally an issue in elevated or pressurized systems, such as water pumps.
So What Are Backflow Preventers?
A backflow preventer ensures that water will only flow in one direction, completely negating the chance of backflow to ever occur. There are three regular backflow prevention devices: air gaps, vacuum breakers, and check valves.
Air gaps are commonly used in sinks to keep substances from re-entering the drinking water or dishwater. They operate simply as a gap of air between the water outlet and dishwasher flood level.
Atmospheric vacuum breakers are also known as AVBs, and they are generally used in hoses, faucets, and spigot assemblies. They operate by using a check valve to open a small air vent when the system loses pressure. This air vent breaks the vacuum within the supply line and allows the supply line to be sealed. It best prevents back siphonage.
Check valves simply open and shut based on water pressure on either side of the valve. It ensures that when pressure is higher on the output than the input, that the valves will shut and prevent the output from reversing back into the input. These assemblies are best for continuous pressure systems.
Backflow Preventer Testing
These devices need to be tested annually, but also when first installed, repaired, or overhauled to ensure proper function. At Backflow Paradise Inc., we offer backflow testing that complies with all Arizona and Phoenix rules and regulations.
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