Secondary Water FAQs

What is a cross connection?

Any connection between a public water system or potable water system and any source containing non potable water or other substances or contaminants.

What is backflow?

The undesirable reversal of flow on non potable water or substance through a cross connection and into the piping of a potable water system.

What is a backflow preventer?

A backflow preventer is a means or mechanism to prevent backflow. It eliminates cross connection and provides a barrier to backflow.

Why do backflow preventers need to be tested?

Mechanical backflow preventers have internal seals, springs, and moving parts that are subject to failure, wear, and fatigue. Therefore, all backflow preventers must be tested within the first 10 days of initial use and then must be tested annually to ensure they are functioning properly.

Are there any health risks related to secondary water?

Secondary water is Not treated and is Not for human consumption.

When will secondary water be available?

Secondary water is only available to some areas (See secondary availability map). Secondary water will be available from May 1st to mid October each year.

Do I need to filter secondary water?

We do recommend using a filter. We are already filtering to 200 micron. Consult a sprinkler professional to determine what level of filtration is needed for your system.

What is the most common form of cross connection?

Ironically the ordinary garden hose is the most common offender as it can be easily connected to the potable water supply and used for a variety of potentially dangerous applications.

Is any protection required on a hose bib?

Yes, a hose bib vacuum breaker should be installed on every hose bib to isolate garden hose applications.

What is meant by: Degree of Hazard?

The “Degree of Hazard” is a commonly used term in cross connection to determine whether the substance in the non potable system is toxic (Health Hazard) or non toxic (Non Health Hazard).

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