Most frequently asked questions about backflow prevention
What is a backflow device?
A backflow prevention device is used to protect water supplies from contamination or pollution. Without a backflow prevention device, contaminated water can enter through a cross connection in the drinking water distribution system. In order to prevent the above situation from occurring, Broward County and Palm Beach County requires all commercial, institutional, governmental and large meter customers (multi-family buildings) to install and maintain testable backflow prevention devices to protect the public drinking water distribution system. The backflow prevention device must be tested and certified yearly by a licensed backflow technician.
Why does the backflow device need to be tested and certified?
Because backflow devices have parts that wear out and break down, Broward County and Palm Beach County has made it mandatory for backflow devices to be tested and certified annually. Having your backflow device tested and certified annually will help ensure that the drinking water supplied to you remains safe.
Who can test and certify a backflow device?
Backflow testing and certifying is done by a certified backflow testing technician.
How much does it cost for testing and certifying a backflow device?
The cost for backflow testing can vary from each company. Great American Plumbing charges $55.00 for backflow testing and certification.
Are there any additional costs in backflow testing?
Great American Plumbing has a $40.00 charge for administration and processing the documents in addition to any town/city permit or utility fee.
Are there permits required for backflow testing and what are the fees?
Each town/city has there own requirements for backflow testing. Some towns/cities require no permits, some require utility fees, while others require permits. The permit fees and utility fees also vary from each town/city. You may call local building department or call Great American Plumbing and we will be happy to help you. Note: Town/City permit or utility fees are in addition to the testing and certifying and administration and processing fee.
What happens if I do not have my backflow device tested?
Due to the severity of contamination or pollution, you are required to have your backflow device tested and certified annually. If you do not have your backflow device tested and certified annually, your local utility department may send you notices, also final warnings, and could ultimately shut off your water supply.
If the backflow device fails, what is the next step?
If your backflow device fails it may need to be repaired or replaced. Once repaired or replaced your backflow device will need to be re-tested and certified. Please note: If Great American Plumbing repairs or replaces your backflow device, we do not charge an additional fee for re-testing after repairs or replacements are made.
Who can repair or replace a backflow device?
Backflow repair is done by a certified backflow repair technician, this technician may also need to be a licensed plumber depending on the town/city. Backflow replacement must be done by a licensed plumber.