The Consequences of Backflow

The Consequences of Backflow

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What should my plumbing system look like?

Fresh water in, dirty water out. Sounds pretty simple, but significant problems arise when the lines blend and waste water ends up mixing with fresh water.

What is the main cause of backflow incidents?

Pressure fluctuations, along with cross-connected plumbing lines. Normally your household water supply is under 30-40 pounds of pressure. If this pressure gets interrupted- perhaps by a water main break in the street, power failure, firefighters battling a nearby blaze or other causes-then water can flow backward in the system. Then it may come in contact with waste water from drain lines.

A fairly common type of backflow occurrence is when a garden hose gets submerged in polluted or contaminated water. If the pressure in the water main drops, the water in the garden hose could be sucked back into the pipes connected to your drinking water.

Is this dangerous?

Yes. This can be very dangerous if you are using your garden hose to spray lawn fertilizer or weed killers. Household cleaning products and the soapy water from your laundry tub also could be hazardous if swallowed, as could water filled with bacteria from a pool or waterbed.

How do I eliminate backflow hazards?

Leave a physical air gap between faucets or garden hoses and standing water. Never submerge a hose in a tub of water or swimming pool. Sometimes it is impossible to use an air gap to prevent water mixing. So for additional protection, our plumbers are adept at recommending and installing various types of mechanical backflow prevention devices.

Plumbing may look simple at times, but it actually involves a understanding of the basic laws of physics. That’s why you always want to call on our fully trained plumbers to deal with issues that impact the health and safety of your family. Schedule your appointment by clicking on the button below.

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