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Backflow Prevention for Residential Customers

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Irrigation SystemsFire Suppression SystemsHose Bibs • Annual Testing • Thermal Expansion

Lawn Irrigation Systems

Reduced Pressure Principle AssemblyAll new and existing irrigation systems within the Town of Leesburg service area must be equipped with an approved backflow Reduced Pressure principle assembly (RP).  The assembly must be inspected and tested upon installation and annually thereafter by a certified backflow tester. Documentation of inspection and test results must be provided to the Town’s Environmental Compliance Inspector annually by June 1st of each year.



Fire Suppression Sprinklers

Double Gate - Double Check Valve AssemblyAll new and existing fire suppression systems must be equipped with an approved double gate - double check valve assembly (DGDC). The assembly must be inspected and tested upon installation and annually thereafter by a certified backflow tester.  Documentation of inspection and test results must be provided to the Town’s Environmental Compliance Officer annually.




Hose Bibs (Outside Spigots)

Hose Bibb Breaker

A hose bibb vacuum breaker should be attached to all threaded hose bibbs to which a hose can be connected (unless it has a built-in vacuum breaker), and is required under Article III, Section 42-58, Cross-connection Control and Backflow Prevention.

Cross-connections with hoses are probably the most prevalent cause of backflow and the contamination of the water system. These devices do not protect against back pressure, only siphonage. They should be installed above the level of the hose being used on it and not under continuous pressure (12 hours at a time).

These devices thread onto the spigot and can be installed easily. A plumber is not required for installation.  Hose bibb vacuum breakers are available at plumbing supply stores. 

Annual Backflow Testing

Mechanical backflow preventers have internal seals, springs, and moving parts that are subject to fouling, wear, or fatigue. Also, mechanical backflow preventers and air gaps can be bypassed. Therefore, all backflow preventers have to be tested annually to ensure that they are functioning properly. A visual check of air gaps is sufficient, but mechanical backflow preventers have to be tested with properly calibrated gauge equipment.

Customers are responsible for having their backflow prevention devices tested by a certified backflow tester and the test results submitted to the Town. For more information, please see the Backflow Testing page. 


Thermal Expansion

The Town of Leesburg Municipal Code requires the installation of a backflow prevention device within your water meter box in order to protect the Town's distribution system from potential cross connections or backflow from the premises. Once water flows through a water meter, the installed backflow prevention device does not allow the customer's water to flow back into the Town's distribution system, therefore, creating a potential for increased pressures within the dwelling through thermal water expansion.

Please review information about measures that can be taken to eliminate problems experienced with thermal expansion.

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