Backflow Preventer Devices FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions - Here are answers to some of the questions that we are frequently asked. We have also included links to informative pages on water company websites, for example, very good "Backflow Preventer" pages on the websites of Pennsylvania Water and North Wales Water.

  • What Is Backflow?

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    "Backflow" is water flowing in the opposite direction of its normal flow, generally caused by a change in the pressure between the water source or supply, and the final destination. Clean, pure water must flow in only one direction: from the water company and out the tap. "Backflow" is very bad because it can cause bacteria, chemicals or physical contaminants to enter the water system at your home or business, or even back into the water company's supply and contaminate everyone's water! Obviously we all need to protect the water supply, and we can all do that by making sure our backflow prevention systems are working properly; backflow prevention devices make sure that water only flows in one direction.

  • What Are Backflow Preventers And Backflow Prevention Devices?

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    Backflow prevention devices range from small setups connected to your sprinkler system to large industrial RPZ (Reduced Pressure Zone) devices. Backflow prevention devices have parts that can break down or wear out, so they must be tested and certified annually to make sure they are functioning and ready to protect the water supply from backflow.

  • What Kinds Of Businesses Have Backflow Preventers?

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    The short answer is that almost every business connected to public water is required to install and maintain a backflow preventer, and inspect it annually to make sure it is in perfect working order. Businesses like these must protect our water: apartments and duplexes, assisted living facitities, auto service stations, bars, car dealerships, car washes, churches, convenience stores, dentists, doctors, fire stations, funeral homes, general business offices, general warehouse and storage facilities, golf courses, hair/nail salons, hospitals, machine shops, manufacturing plants, medical centers, rehabilition centers, restaurants, retirement homes and schools, and many, many more. Any non-residence must have backflow preventers installed and then tested annually.

  • What Water Companies Are In Your Service Area?

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    We inspect, repair and install Backflow Devices in areas served by the following water companies: Aqua Pennsylvania Main Water System, Audubon Water Company, Bern Township Municipal Authority, Bethel United Water, Boyertown Municipal Authority, Chester Water Authority, Flying Hills Water System Aqua Pennsylvania, Hatboro Aqua Pennsylvania, Horsham Water and Sewer Authority, Kennett Square Municipal Water Works, London Grove Township Municipal Authority, Norristown Pennsylvania American Water, North Penn Water Authority, Ontelaunee Township Municipal Authority, Oxford Borough, Pennsylvania American Water Company, Philadelphia Water Department, Reading Area Water Authority, Shillington Municipal Authority, Uwchlan Township Aqua Pennsylvania, Wernersville Municipal Water Authority, West Reading Borough Water Authority, Western Berks Water Authority and Wyomissing Borough Water System.

  • What Areas Do You Serve?

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    We inspect, repair and install Backflow Devices in most areas of Montgomery County, Chester County and Berks County in southeastern Pennsylvania. By county, some of the zip codes and towns, townships, cities, boroughs and municipalities we serve are:

    • Montgomery County Towns - Zip Code Order

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      18041 East Greenville, 18054 Green Lane, 18070 Palm,
      18073 Pennsburg, 18074 Perkiomenville, 18076 Red Hill,
      18084 Sumneytown, 18915 Colmar, 18918 Earlington,
      18924 Franconia, 18936 Montgomeryville, 18957 Salford,
      18958 Salfordville, 18964 Souderton, 18969 Telford,
      18971 Tylersport, 18979 Woxall, 19001 Abington, 19002 Ambler,
      19003 Ardmore, 19004 Bala Cynwyd, 19006 Huntingdon Valley,
      19009 Bryn Athyn, 19012 Cheltenham, 19025 Dresher,
      19027 Elkins Park, 19031 Flourtown, 19034 Fort Washington,
      19035 Gladwyne, 19038 Glenside, 19040 Hatboro,
      19041 Haverford, 19044 Horsham, 19046 Jenkintown,
      19066 Merion Station, 19072 Narberth, 19075 Oreland,
      19090 Willow Grove, 19095 Wyncote, 19096 Wynnewood,
      19401 Norristown, 19403 Norristown, 19404 Norristown,
      19405 Bridgeport, 19406 King Of Prussia, 19407 Audubon,
      19408 Eagleville, 19409 Fairview Village, 19415 Eagleville,
      19420 Arcola, 19422 Blue Bell, 19423 Cedars, 19424 Blue Bell,
      19426 Collegeville, 19428 Conshohocken, 19429 Conshohocken,
      19430 Creamery, 19435 Frederick, 19436 Gwynedd,
      19437 Gwynedd Valley, 19438 Harleysville, 19440 Hatfield,
      19441 Harleysville, 19443 Kulpsville, 19444 Lafayette Hill,
      19446 Lansdale, 19450 Lederach, 19451 Mainland,
      19453 Mont Clare, 19454 North Wales, 19455 North Wales,
      19456 Oaks, 19462 Plymouth Meeting, 19464 Pottstown,
      19468 Royersford, 19472 Sassamansville, 19473 Schwenksville,
      19474 Skippack, 19477 Spring House, 19478 Spring Mount,
      19483 Valley Forge, 19484 Valley Forge, 19485 Valley Forge,
      19486 West Point, 19490 Worcester, 19492 Zieglerville
      and 19525 Gilbertsville

    • Montgomery County Towns - Alphabetical Order

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      Abington, Ambler, Arcola, Ardmore, Audubon, Bala Cynwyd, Blue Bell, Bridgeport, Bryn Athyn, Cedars, Cheltenham, Collegeville, Colmar, Conshohocken, Creamery, Dresher, Eagleville, Earlington, East Greenville, Elkins Park, Fairview Village, Flourtown, Fort Washington, Franconia, Frederick, Gilbertsville, Gladwyne, Glenside, Green Lane, Gwynedd, Gwynedd Valley, Harleysville, Hatboro, Hatfield, Haverford, Horsham, Huntingdon Valley, Jenkintown, King Of Prussia, Kulpsville, Lafayette Hill, Lansdale, Lederach, Mainland, Merion Station, Mont Clare, Montgomeryville, Narberth, Norristown, North Wales, Oaks, Oreland, Palm, Pennsburg, Perkiomenville, Plymouth Meeting, Pottstown, Red Hill, Royersford, Salford, Salfordville, Sassamansville, Schwenksville, Skippack, Souderton, Spring House, Spring Mount, Sumneytown, Telford, Tylersport, Valley Forge, West Point, Willow Grove, Worcester, Woxall, Wyncote, Wynnewood and Zieglerville

    • Chester County Towns - Zip Code Order

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      19301 Paoli, 19310 Atglen, 19311 Avondale, 19312 Berwyn,
      19316 Brandamore, 19318 Chatham, 19320 Coatesville,
      19330 Cochranville, 19333 Devon, 19335 Downingtown,
      19341 Exton, 19343 Glenmoore, 19344 Honey Brook,
      19345 Immaculata, 19346 Kelton, 19347 Kemblesville,
      19348 Kennett Square, 19350 Landenberg, 19351 Lewisville,
      19352 Lincoln University, 19353 Lionville, 19354 Lyndell,
      19355 Malvern, 19357 Mendenhall, 19358 Modena,
      19360 New London, 19362 Nottingham, 19363 Oxford,
      19365 Parkesburg, 19366 Pocopson, 19367 Pomeroy,
      19369 Sadsburyville, 19371 Suplee, 19372 Thorndale,
      19374 Toughkenamon, 19375 Unionville, 19376 Wagontown,
      19380 West Chester, 19381 West Chester, 19382 West Chester,
      19383 West Chester, 19390 West Grove, 19395 Westtown,
      19397 Southeastern, 19398 Southeastern, 19399 Southeastern,
      19421 Birchrunville, 19425 Chester Springs, 19432 Devault,
      19442 Kimberton, 19457 Parker Ford, 19460 Phoenixville,
      19465 Pottstown, 19470 Saint Peters, 19475 Spring City,
      19480 Uwchland, 19481 Valley Forge, 19482 Valley Forge,
      19487 King Of Prussia, 19488 Norristown, 19489 Norristown,
      19493 Valley Forge, 19494 Valley Forge, 19495 Valley Forge,
      19496 Valley Forge and 19520 Elverson

    • Chester County Towns - Alphabetical Order

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      Atglen, Avondale, Berwyn, Birchrunville, Brandamore, Chatham, Chester Springs, Coatesville, Cochranville, Devault, Devon, Downingtown, Elverson, Exton, Glenmoore, Honey Brook, Immaculata, Kelton, Kemblesville, Kennett Square, Kimberton, King Of Prussia, Landenberg, Lewisville, Lincoln University, Lionville, Lyndell, Malvern, Mendenhall, Modena, New London, Norristown, Nottingham, Oxford, Paoli, Parker Ford, Parkesburg, Phoenixville, Pocopson, Pomeroy, Pottstown, Sadsburyville, Saint Peters, Southeastern, Spring City, Suplee, Thorndale, Toughkenamon, Unionville, Uwchland, Valley Forge, Wagontown, West Chester, West Grove and Westtown

    • Berks County Towns - Zip Code Order

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      18056 Hereford, 19503 Bally, 19504 Barto, 19505 Bechtelsville,
      19506 Bernville, 19507 Bethel, 9508 Birdsboro, 19510 Blandon,
      19511 Bowers, 19512 Boyertown, 19516 Centerport,
      19518 Douglassville, 19519 Earlville, 19522 Fleetwood,
      19523 Geigertown, 19526 Hamburg, 19529 Kempton,
      19530 Kutztown, 19533 Leesport, 19534 Lenhartsville,
      19535 Limekiln, 19536 Lyon Station, 19538 Maxatawny,
      19539 Mertztown, 19540 Mohnton, 19541 Mohrsville,
      19542 Monocacy Station, 19543 Morgantown, 19544 Mount Aetna,
      19545 New Berlinville, 19547 Oley, 19548 Pine Forge,
      19550 Rehrersburg, 19551 Robesonia, 19554 Shartlesville,
      19555 Shoemakersville, 19559 Strausstown, 19560 Temple,
      19562 Topton, 19564 Virginville, 19565 Wernersville,
      19567 Womelsdorf, 19601 Reading, 19602 Reading,
      19603 Reading, 19604 Reading, 19605 Reading,
      19606 Reading, 19607 Reading, 19608 Reading,
      19609 Reading, 19610 Reading, 19611 Reading,
      19612 Reading and 19640 Reading

    • Berks County Towns - Alphabetical Order

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      Bally, Barto, Bechtelsville, Bernville, Bethel, Birdsboro, Blandon, Bowers, Boyertown, Centerport, Douglassville, Earlville, Fleetwood, Geigertown, Hamburg, Hereford, Kempton, Kutztown, Leesport, Lenhartsville, Limekiln, Lyon Station, Maxatawny, Mertztown, Mohnton, Mohrsville, Monocacy Station, Morgantown, Mount Aetna, New Berlinville, Oley, Pine Forge, Reading, Rehrersburg, Robesonia, Shartlesville, Shoemakersville, Strausstown, Temple, Topton, Virginville, Wernersville and Womelsdorf

  • What Does Pennsylvania Water Say About Backflow Preventers?

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    Note: Pennsylvania American Water serves more that 2 million people in more than 380 communities in 35 counties across the state, including many in Montgomery County, Chester County and Berks County.

    According to Pennsylvania American Water, "All non-residential water customers are required to have an approved backflow device installed and tested on an annual basis. Non-residential customers must certify in writing to Pennsylvania American Water that these devices have been maintained and are in working order. This should include a test performed by a qualified inspector. A Backflow Prevention Device Test Form should be completed by the tester and mailed or faxed to Pennsylvania American Water."

    Pennsylvania American Water also says this: "Backflow prevention devices are mechanical plumbing devices installed in a plumbing system to prevent water from flowing backward in the system. A properly installed, tested and maintained backflow preventer at the service entrance to a building or property can reliably prevent the backflow of water of an unknown quality from flowing back into the community water system. Backflow prevention is important to protect the Pennsylvania American Water customers against accidental contamination of the drinking water supply due to a direct connection of a non-drinkable substance to the normal drinking water piping."

    Here's a link to the page on the Pennsylvania American Water website that has this important information, plus it says a lot more about Backflow Prevention:

    Pennsylvania Water: Q and A About Backflow Prevention

    Pennsylvania Water: Cross Connection and Backflow Prevention

  • What Does North Wales Water Say About Backflow Preventers?

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    Note: North Wales Water Authority serves over 25,000 customers in seven municipalities (Lower Gwynedd, Montgomery, New Britain, North Wales, Upper Dublin, Upper Gwynedd and Whitpain) in Montgomery County and Bucks County.

    According to North Wales Water Authority, "The production and delivery of safe potable water at the lowest reasonable cost is the object of greatest importance to the North Wales Water Authority. When water of superior quality has been produced and put into the distribution system precautions must be taken to be certain that it is not contaminated from other sources. Since 1986, the Authority has taken on the development and operational functions of a Backflow Prevention and Cross-Connection Control Program in order to ensure that our distribution system is in compliance with the Safe Drinking Water Act. Under these requirements the Authority has the primary responsibility for protecting the public water supply from the backflow of substances that could endanger public health or physically damage the distribution system."

    North Wales Water Authority also says this: "The term 'backflow' refers to the condition when water flows in the opposite, or reverse, of the intended direction within a piping system. This reversal of flow could allow water that is compromised with other liquids, gasses or contaminated substances to enter the potable water system. Backflow can be achieved by either backpressure or backsiphonage. Cross-connections are the physical connections or arrangements between the drinking water supply and a piping system containing water or substances of unknown or questionable quality."

    Here's a link to the page on the North Wales Water Authority website that has this important information, plus it says a lot more about Backflow Prevention:

    North Wales Water Authority - Backflow Prevention And Testing

  • What Does Newtown Artesian Water Company Say About Backflow Preventers?

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    Note: Newtown Artesian Water Company provides water service to customers in Newtown Borough, Newtown Township, and the northern portion of Middletown Township in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

    According to Newtown Artesian Water Company, "Also in accordance with 25 Pa Code Chapter 109, all backflow devices for commercial and industrial customers should be tested at least annually. Newtown Artesian Water Company will send a testing notice to all our commercial and industrial customers in July each year. Included in the mailing will be a list of certified testers and the testing and maintenance form. Please have your device tested by a certified tester and mail us the completed form for our records. Please update the form with any changes that you'd like us to make in our system such as name, address change, etc. If you do not have a backflow prevention device or are not sure whether you have one, please give us a call at 215-968-6781 to schedule an appointment for one of our field employees to come and inspect your facility. If it is determined that a backflow device is required, we shall notify you in writing to install such an approved backflow prevention device within 90 days. Please note that in accordance with Section 109.709(a)(2), failure or refusal to install an approved backflow prevention device within 90 days shall constitute a ground for discontinuing water service to your premises until such device or devices have been properly installed."

    Here's a link to the page on the Newtown Artesian Water Company website that has this important information, plus it says a lot more about Backflow Prevention:

    Newtown Artesian Water - Backflow Prevention & Testing

Greg Ribick, Mr. Backflow
Certified Backflow Technician
and Licensed Master Plumber

Backflow Inspections by Greg Ribick, an AASE Certified Technician Certified Backflow Inspection and Testing by Greg Ribick, an AASE Certified Technician and Licensed Master Plumber

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