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A backflow prevention device is an assembly that is installed in a plumbing system to enable water to flow in only a forward direction.
Heating systems, elevated storage tanks, boilers, and other pressure producing systems can create pressure in the customer's plumbing that exceeds the supply pressure. This hydraulic condition can push contaminated water back into the fresh water supply.
Any type of backflow prevention assembly must be on the "approved list" published by the University of Southern California Foundation for Cross Connection Control and Hydraulic Research.
No. State regulations exempt single family residences from backflow requirements unless a hazard exists, such as an irrigation system, fire suppression system, a boiler or any other potential hazard.