How frequently does a backflow prevention assembly have to be tested?

Backflow prevention devices must be tested at least annually. Backflow assemblies are mechanical assemblies and as such they are subject to fail, which is why the VDH requires that they be tested at least once a year. Newly installed backflow assemblies and backflow assemblies that are repaired or relocated must also be tested. This requirement is echoed by the Virginia Maintenance Code, International Plumbing Code, and the Environmental Protection Agency’s Cross Connection Control Manual. Only certified individuals may perform inspections and tests of backflow prevention assemblies – see here.

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1. Why does the City of Petersburg Public Utilities Division have a Backflow Prevention & Cross Connection Control Program?
2. What is a cross-connection?
3. What is backflow?
4. What is backpressure?
5. What is backsiphonage?
6. Why is backflow a concern to the public?
7. Are all residential homes required to have backflow assemblies?
8. Why are irrigation systems considered to be hazardous to the water system?
9. What type of backflow prevention assemblies are allowed in irrigation systems?
10. How do I know if I have a backflow prevention assembly?
11. What kind of buildings need backflow prevention assemblies?
12. Is there a minimum height that the backflow assembly must be installed?
13. When is a plumbing permit required?
14. Can a backflow device be removed?
15. How frequently does a backflow prevention assembly have to be tested?
16. How much will the inspections/maintenance cost?
17. What credentials are required to inspect and test a backflow prevention assembly?
18. Will I receive notification when to perform my test?
19. What if I don’t receive a letter?
20. What can I do with my test report?
21. Abbreviations