One of the most important aspects of taking care of your water supply and keeping your plumbing system safe is preventing backflow. There is more to preventing backflow than just installing a prevention system once; you need to have your backflow prevention assembly checked on an annual basis. If you have a backflow prevention system but have not had it tested since it was installed then there could be issues with it that you are completely unaware of. You need to take the time to check your backflow assembly and see if there are any signs it needs to be repaired or maintained by a professional.
The biggest sign and reason to get a backflow test is the amount of time that has passed either since the installation or your last test. If it has been a year or more than a year then you need to get a backflow test immediately. Backflow testing needs to be scheduled every year so that your plumbing can be up to code and you are meeting the requirements of the law. Even if you think that there is nothing wrong with your backflow prevention assembly, there could be an unseen problem that can only be identified by an experienced professional. As time passes, the wear and tear on your backflow assembly from severe weather can cause certain parts to break down. When this happens, your backflow prevention system is no longer working properly and your water can easily become contaminated. A backflow prevention system can appear to be working fine but when tested it might fail to hold the required check pressures. This is a common problem that experts in backflow must resolve following a failed test.
There are also some visible signs that you might need some backflow assembly repair in addition to your annual test. If you notice anything unusual about your prevention assembly then you should call a company that can determine whether or not it needs to be repaired. If there is any sort of visible leak on the backflow assembly or discharge then you will need to have it checked out and tested. A leak or discharge could be caused by dirt and debris, fluctuation or negative pressure in the system, thermal expansion, or water hammer. Any kind of leak could be a potential problem whether it is a slow, dripping leak or a sporadic and fluctuating discharge. Dripping water is a sign that there is some kind of failure in the device and it will need to be repaired as soon as possible.
The most serious and dangerous sign that your backflow system is not working correctly is if your clean water supply appears cloudy or discolored. Even if the water from your hose or sink water that you do not drink is unusual in appearance then there is likely an issue with your backflow prevention assembly. If anything about your water looks strange then make sure to avoid consuming any of your potable water and immediately call a repair company to test the system and resolve any potential issues. It is a reality that backflow systems can break down and water can become contaminated, dirty and undrinkable. Drinking water from a broken plumbing system can lead to serious illness and even death in some cases. Always make sure to have a repair and testing company in mind to contact when any issues should come up with your backflow system. If there are any leaks from the valve, discolored water, or it has simply been a long time since you’ve had a test then call your backflow company for assistance.