Any commercial facility’s plumbing system likely includes dozens of junctures where potable and non-potable water meet, and each of these junctures has the potential to develop problems with backflow. However, many commercial facility owners and property managers overlook these vulnerable points in their plumbing systems.
If you haven’t had your pipes fitted with backflow prevention devices (or haven’t had your devices inspected in many years), it may be wise to call your local plumbing contractors to have these critical safety measures installed.
What is Backflow?
Backflow is an aptly named phenomenon in which water that is intended to flow in only one direction (like the wastewater leaving a toilet) suddenly begins to flow the other way. When this causes two separated water sources to touch, contamination occurs.
In some cases, this introduces relatively harmless but unpalatable contaminants like soil or minerals. In other instances, what should be a pristine potable water supply becomes tainted with extremely hazardous substances, such as high-grade pesticides or even human waste. Once this happens, plumbing contractors cannot easily reverse it, so keeping contaminants out of potable water lines is of utmost importance.
Why Does Backflow Happen?
As plumbing contractors can tell you, all backflow problems are the result of poorly balanced pressure inside the connected networks of pipes.
There are more specific terms depending on which side of the connection is experiencing the problem: backflow originating from negative pressure in the supply piping is called backsiphonage, while backflow linked to excessive pressure in the attached piping system is called backpressure.
Backsiphonage is caused by a sudden loss of pressure in the supply pipes, such as when firefighters draw heavily on your city’s water supply in an emergency. Backpressure, on the other hand, is caused by things like an overactive pump, heat-induced pressure from a nearby boiler, or even just poor pipe placement. Even excellent plumbing contractors cannot control all of these variables, so additional safeguards are needed.
Why Should Plumbing Contractors Install a Backflow Prevention Device?
A backflow prevention device, also known as a backflow valve or backflow preventer, can greatly reduce the likelihood of water contamination in case of pressure variations. These devices are installed by plumbing contractors and use a hinged metal flap to control the flow of the water in the pipes, blocking water from entering pipes where it should not be.
Having your plumbing contractors install a backflow preventer:
- Prevents water contamination and the ensuing potential for disease.
- Mitigates your liability in any health and safety lawsuits concerning water contamination.
- Ensures compliance with local and provincial regulations for commercial buildings.
- Potentially lowers the cost of insuring your building.
- Avoids unnecessary damage to your property due to uncontrolled water leaks.
- Minimizes unpleasant smells and visible water residue that might negatively impact business in your building.
The Importance of Expert Installation
Backflow is a serious problem that can endanger public health and even force your business to close temporarily while repairs and sanitization are conducted. It is not to be taken lightly, and commercial facilities must take every precaution to prevent it from occurring.
Unfortunately, a backflow preventer can easily fail if it is installed incorrectly by your plumbing contractors, and even a minuscule amount of contact between the two separated water sources is considered unacceptable in the eyes of the law. It is your responsibility as the owner or overseer of a commercial facility to have these critical devices securely placed by qualified plumbing contractors at every juncture where there is a risk of backflow and to verify that each is functioning properly.
Don’t settle for searching for ‘plumbing companies near me‘ – be sure to take your time and choose the right plumbing contractors for this important job.
Eliminate Backflow Problems with Mattina’s Commercial Plumbing Services
Backflow does not have to be a problem inside your commercial facility. Mattina Mechanical is a leading provider of commercial plumbing and mechanical services in Hamilton. As long-time plumbing contractors, we know exactly what it takes to prevent this potentially very serious health hazard.
Our licensed and highly experienced staff can install all of the backflow prevention devices your facility needs, keeping your building safe and compliant with all relevant regulations for years to come. Contact us today and let us help you keep your facility’s potable water clean and contaminant-free.