Backflow Prevention

Backflow prevention is a familiar term to people who work in the water industry. Many of our customers have heard that phrase too, but may know little about the significant role backflow prevention plays in water quality.

The Town of Yadkinville works hard to protect your drinking water from contamination through a strict water quality process. However, once water passes from our water mains and through the meter, who or what protects the quality of the drinking water that flows from the meter into your home or business? The answer to this question is: Town of Yadkvinville, our customers, and backflow prevention devices.

Water, like electricity, always takes the path of least resistance, traveling from areas under high pressure to areas under lower pressure. Under normal conditions water travels in one direction, from our water main towards your property. But under irregular conditions, like a water main break or a broken fire hydrant, the water can be forcibly siphoned back into the system, also known as backflow.

Although this sounds harmless, water that is in the pipes on the property owner's side of the meter can be exposed to many outlets and fixtures. These would include sinks, irrigation systems, toilets, showers, washing machines, hose bibs, and commercial fixtures - all of which can be exposed to chemicals and other contaminants.Some appliances have backflow prevention devices built-in for this very reason, yet landscape irrigation, spas, swimming pools, solar systems, or even a bucket of soapy water being filled by a garden hose, are examples why extra protection may be required. Imagine what would happen if someone had a hose in a bucket of liquid fertilizer and a loss of pressure occurred on a system without a backflow device!

The Town of Yadkinville incorporated a Backflow Prevention Program in July 2003, to ensure that backflow prevention devices were installed and maintained where backflow is considered a risk. Typically, backflow prevention devices are required within plumbing systems that have connections that use or contain industrial fluids or chemicals, irrigation systems, fertilizers, and/or well water. Please contact our office to determined what backflow prevention device is needed. After installation, an inspection must be conducted by one of our certified staff.

Backflow prevention devices are like safety belts, protecting you from events that may never happen. For our customers that have testable devices, a letter of notification will be sent out each month when your device is due to be tested and/or rebuilt. If repairs are needed, be certain to have the corrections done by the stated deadline. Contact our office (or visit our website) for a "Test and Maintenance Report" form (located under "Download Forms & Documents/Public Works"). You can contact our Public Works Director about your backflow questions by e-mail at pwilliams@yadkinville.org or by telephone at (336) 679-2990.

Our website has a list of backflow prevention assembly testers that can help you with the annual backflow testing and certification process. All rules, regulations, and installation instructions can be found in our "Backflow Prevention Ordinance".