The Importance of A Sprinkler Backflow Preventer

Updated: Jan 15



Think your water at home is safe and clean to drink? Then think again.


Although the United States has one of the safest water supplies globally, many household owners still can’t escape the risks of contamination.


As of 2017, about 68 million Americans were exposed to unsafe drinking water. The reasons for this vary in different households.


One of the possible sources of contamination is the malfunction in your backflow devices.


Installing a sprinkler backflow preventer is essential to prevent corrosions and contamination of potable water.


Read on to learn how installing a backflow preventer in your systems protects your home from health risks and damages.


What Is a Backflow?

Water from the water treatment center has to pass through several connections before it arrives at your main water line and come out on your faucets.


However, non-potable water can flow backward due to pressure changes in the pipe. Backflow can reverse its flow and make it unsafe for drinking.


Just like sprinkler heads, it can occur from time to time and create larger issues to your water system. The following are among the reasons for this problem:

  • Line breaks

  • Frozen pipes

  • Sudden reduction in water pressure to your water supply line

  • Open fire hydrants

  • Improper installation of sprinkler systems

What Is a Backflow Preventer?

A backflow preventer, by its name, is a backflow prevention device that can protect you from contamination risks in your irrigation system. It’s like a one-way gate that allows water to go through in one direction and hinders it from flowing backward in the opposite direction.


Just like a check valve, these devices are close when the flow reverses.


Some irrigation systems can use a double check type backflow preventer if they want to install the device in a box below ground level. This type of prevention device is simply a two-spring loaded check valve in a row, with test cocks and a shut-off valve on one end.


Double checks rely entirely on the tightly-sealed check valves to block backflow.


Types of Backflow Preventers

  • Air Gaps

These are the simple vertical gaps that allow pressure to change safely.

A sturdy backflow prevention device installed with a check valve for better security.

  • Reduced Pressure Type Backflow Preventer

This device uses a reduced pressure principle to prevent backflow in your system. It has both checks and pressure regulation and is suitable for almost any sort of setup.

These are the simple vertical gaps for safe reduced pressure.

  • Anti-Siphon Valve

These are the valves that help normalize pressure in your system pipes even when the water is off.

  • Pressure Vacuum Breaker

Pressure Vacuum Breakers are the above-ground regulators hooked to the mainline of your system.


Whether it's an air gap or a vacuum breaker, it's essential to use backflow preventers in your irrigation system to avoid contamination and health risks from pollutants and parasites. They also protect your neighbors who get their supply from the same public water line.


If you’re a landlord or a commercial building owner, install and use these devices as they are highly-recommended in the water safety standards throughout the country.


Invest in sprinkler backflow preventers now!

Prevention is always better than cure.


If you notice any unusual flow, color, smell, or taste in your water supply, don’t hesitate to call an expert to double-check it. The professional will most likely recommend you to invest in a backflow preventer and use it to prevent further contamination risks.


If you need expert help in your water or fire monitoring system at home, B&W Fire Security Systems, the most trusted fire protection company in Arizona, is here for you. Contact us to know more about our services and get a quick quotation!


Got any questions about backflow devices? Ask us a question or share your thoughts in the comments section below!


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