What is Backflow Testing? A Lubbock Plumber Explains
Many Lubbock area residents may not understand what backflow testing is and why it is important. Armstrong Plumbing, Air & Electric would like to remove the mystery and explain it from a plumber’s perspective.
So, What is Backflow Testing?
Backflow testing is a crucial process designed to ensure the safety of potable water systems. It involves assessing and examining the backflow prevention devices installed in plumbing systems to prevent the unwanted reversal of water flow.
Backflow occurs when the normal direction of water flow in a plumbing system is reversed, allowing contaminants, pollutants or non-potable water to enter the clean water supply. This can happen due to changes in water pressure, such as during a water main break, or when a cross-connection exists between the potable water system and a contaminated source.
Backflow prevention devices are specifically installed to mitigate this risk. These devices, such as check valves, pressure vacuum breakers or reduced pressure zone assemblies, prevent the backward flow of water by automatically closing or creating a physical barrier when water pressure changes occur. However, these devices need to be regularly tested to ensure their proper functioning and reliability.
During a backflow testing procedure, an Armstrong professional plumber carefully inspects each backflow prevention device in your plumbing system. This involves a series of tests, including the visual inspection of the device for any signs of damage or wear, as well as functional testing to ensure it closes or opens correctly in response to pressure changes.
Using specialized equipment, the plumber measures the pressure differentials at various points in the plumbing system to verify that the backflow prevention devices are operating within the required limits. These measurements provide valuable data to determine if the devices are functioning as intended and if any maintenance or repairs are necessary.
When to Perform Backflow Testing
Backflow testing is typically performed on an annual basis, although the frequency may vary depending on local regulations and the specific system requirements. The results of the testing are documented and kept for record-keeping purposes, as they may be required by regulatory authorities.
Ultimately, backflow testing is a fundamental responsibility for plumbers to safeguard public health and maintain the integrity of potable water systems. By ensuring the proper operation of backflow prevention devices, plumbers play a vital role in preventing contamination and protecting the quality of our drinking water supply.
To ensure your water supply is free from non-potable contaminants, schedule backflow testing for your plumbing system today.