Imagine coming home, drawing a bath, and coming back to sewage or grey water flowing from your faucet. It may sound like a nightmare, but for some homeowners, it could be the reality.
While most homeowners know about run-of-the-mill plumbing issues like water leaks and clogs, the ones you have to worry about are the large-scale emergencies that can completely stop you from using your plumbing.
And one of those large-scale issues is backflow emergencies. But the more you know about it, the better prepared you will be at handling it and preventing it in your home.
Never Heard of Back-Flow?
Most homeowners never give their plumbing systems a second thought, however, they are an intricate connection of pipes and water pressure that keep things running smoothly.
The water pressure is a key component as it ensures water flows in the right direction, into your home. Backflow is the reversal of that flow.
Instead of greywater and sewage flowing away from your home, they flow back in, especially if you don’t have a prevention device in place. This reversed flow can stem from a burst pipe, damage to the city water mains, or even flood waters. Because these issues are often unexpected – it’s important to be protected with a backflow preventer.
How Can an Air Gap Stop Backflow?
The best plumbing solutions are often the simplest ones. An air gap is a built-in separation in your plumbing that adds space between connections.
This gap exists where your plumbing meets your fixtures. When the water pressure is at normal levels, your water can easily make its way out for use.
But if the pressure drops, this air pocket keeps non-potable water from flowing out.
The Benefits of Pressure Vacuum Breakers
Another backflow prevention device is a pressure vacuum breaker. These devices operate using the pressure in your plumbing system.
When the pressure is high the spring-activated stopper is kept open. If the pressure drops for any reason – as in a backflow emergency – the stopper closes, preventing water from flowing in.
These small devices are ideal for backflow prevention because they can be installed directly on your water mains, require little maintenance, and can easily be tested by a trained plumber to ensure code compliance. It’s imperative to check with your city to determine whether or not a backflow preventer is mandatory.
Choosing a Solution for Your Home
Best plumbing practices say prevention is the best method – and it couldn’t be more right in regards to backflow. If you’re unsure whether or not your home has a backflow device, you’re already in rough shape.
By working with your local plumber you can find a device that works with your specific piping for the best effectiveness. At Plumbing Nerds, we are your Bonita Springs plumbing specialists.
After an inspection, we can help you set an easy pipe cleaning and maintenance routine to prevent any major emergencies. With a little help and a quality game plan, you’ll never be surprised by a backflow emergency.