Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing Blog

The Problem of Backflow

Have you ever been washing your hands, or taking a shower, and suddenly found yourself covered in tepid, disgusting water? That’s because of a problem called “backflow,” which is both disgusting and damaging to your home. Fortunately, there’s a way to deal with backflow by installing a backflow prevention device. Let’s take a look at why backflow happens, and what to do about it.

What is Backflow?

Backflow is a condition caused by a sudden pressure change in your plumbing system. This sudden imbalance in pressure between the plumbing system and the sewer system causes sewer water to flow backwards through the system, which is how you can find yourself standing in sewer water while in the shower. The problem with this is that the sewer water contaminates the plumbing pipes that are only supposed to carry fresh water. This poses a health risk for those inside your home, and you’ll have to have the whole plumbing system flushed out in order to get rid of the contamination. This is time consuming, and an expense that you really don’t want to have to deal with. That’s why you should install a backflow prevention device.

What is a Backflow Prevention Device?

A backflow prevention device sits in your sewer line, between your home and the municipal sewer main. It is essentially a one-way valve, which allows water to flow from your plumbing system to your sewer line without issues. If and when backflow occurs, the valve shuts to prevent the sewer water from actually contaminating your plumbing. Backflow prevention devices are so effective that they have become standard in most new homes across the country. If you don’t have one, though, don’t despair.

If you have a backflow problem, call Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating, & Plumbing. We serve all of Bethesda, MD.