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How to Install a Water Backflow Preventer
How to Install a Water Backflow Preventer
May 30/2024

How to Install a Water Backflow Preventer

A water backflow preventer, as the name suggests, is a device designed to keep water flowing in only one direction but never in the opposite direction. It is installed on water pipes to protect water from contamination due to backflow. Without this device, wastewater may reverse into the supply water line and cause contamination. A water backflow preventer can also be installed in irrigation systems and fire protection systems to serve the same purpose.

Here at Mr. Rooter Plumbing, we are the company you can count on for plumbing installations. If you’re looking for a trusted plumbing service to help you install a water backflow prevention device, we are a simple call away. In this guide, we will explain the benefits of installing a water backflow preventer and how to install the device.

Benefits of Installing a Water Backflow Preventer

  • Maintain water quality: This is the primary benefit. Backflow preventers stop contaminated water from entering your clean water supply. This ensures you have safe, drinkable water and reduces the risk of waterborne illnesses.
  • Comply with legal requirements: In many areas, backflow preventers are required by law to protect public health. Installing one ensures you're following regulations and avoiding fines.
  • Reduce the risk of water damage: Backflow events can cause pressure surges that can damage pipes and fixtures. Backflow preventers help prevent these surges and potential leaks.
  • Improve water system efficiency: By preventing contaminated water from flowing back into the system, backflow preventers help maintain pressure and flow throughout the entire water supply network. This reduces strain on pumps and ensures everyone has access to adequate water pressure.

How to Install a Water Backflow Preventer: A Step-By-Step Guide

  • Turn off the Water Supply: Locate the shut-off valve for the water line you'll be installing the preventer on and turn it off completely.
  • Relieve Pressure: Open a faucet or hose bib downstream to release any trapped pressure in the line.
  • Choose the Installation Location: The backflow preventer needs to be easily accessible for testing and maintenance in the future. It should be installed above the ground in a protected location.
  • Cut the Pipe: Following the instructions for your specific preventer, cut the water line where you want to install it. Ensure you have enough space to fit the preventer.
  • Install the Preventer: There are two main methods for connecting the preventer: threaded and glued connections or compression fittings. Follow the manufacturer's instructions for your chosen preventer type to properly connect it to the cut pipe using Teflon tape or the required fittings.
  • Tighten the Connections: Ensure all connections are secure, but avoid over-tightening which can damage the parts.
  • Turn on the Water Supply Slowly: Gradually open the shut-off valve to refill the line. Listen for any leaks at the connections.
  • Test the Backflow Preventer: Refer to the manufacturer's instructions for the proper way to test your specific preventer model. This might involve activating a test lever or opening a drain valve.

Can I Install A Water Backflow Preventer Myself?

As you can tell from the steps we’ve highlighted above, installing a backflow preventer is a complex process. If you're unfamiliar with plumbing, leave it to a professional plumbing repair service. As a DIYer, you could choose the wrong size or type of backflow preventer or install the device incorrectly, rendering it useless. If you have any doubts about your ability to complete the task safely and correctly, consult a licensed plumber.

Call Mr. Rooter Plumbing for Help

Are you looking for a reliable plumbing service to help you install a water backflow preventer? Call Mr. Rooter Plumbing. Our plumbers are trained in proper installation techniques to ensure the preventer functions correctly and meets code requirements. They’re also familiar with different types of preventers and can advise you on which one is best suited for your needs.