If you are an owner of a commercial and industrial property, then it is your responsibility to install and test backflow devices. What is true of commercial property owners should be true of homeowners as well; they should have backflow devices installed and tested annually in their property.
Most business owners treat backflow device testing as a normal cost of their business and so they have their backflow devices tested and repaired. Many homeowners do not understand the importance of backflow device testing and this is the reason why they resist this idea.
It is because of the expense that they resist the testing and they feel that what they pay for their water bill should cover the testing.
They fail to see the importance of backflow prevention connection control processes in general and the possible hazards it can cause if the program should fail because of neglect. Pollution and contamination entering the potable water system is a real threat and it has already happened in some communities within the US.
The problem with many homeowners is that they do not know that their water bill does not include backflow device testing. The water supplier that supplied water to your home simply owns the pipe from the source up to your meter. Beyond the meter, including water pipes, a backflow device belongs to the homeowner. Water suppliers don’t perform backflow device testing or repair because they are not required by law to do so. They are required to ensure that the testing is accomplished by the owner of the device. It is very expensive to do this service to homeowners.
Backflow device testing and repairs can be done by an independent contractor. Only certified contractors can do the backflow device testing. You need money and time to get this certification. You should enroll in a training course and pass your written and practical test to receive a certification. To maintain your certification, scheduled re-testing is necessary. Independent contractors must invest in the test equipment and tools so that he is able to conduct tests and perform repairs. Purchasing test equipment is costly and it should be calibrated annually by a certified facility. This is why water suppliers don’t do backflow device testing.
Cross-connection/backflow control processes are mandated by the federal and state governments. This policy is implemented because of the threat to our potable water system which is very real.
It is only for your protection that a backflow prevention program is in place in your community. Pollutants and contaminants may be introduced into the potable water system at any point at which they come into contact with each other. the potable water system will be contaminated with high level health hazards.
The reason for testing these backflow devices annually is because these devices are mechanical devices with moving parts, springs, gaskets, etc. that can wear, weaken, and fail over time.