What Is Backflow? How To Prevent it?

What’s called backflow by plumbers is one of the most dangerous things that can happen in your home. It occurs when contaminants from outside of your home enter your water supply, causing significant damage and health hazards to you and your family. Read on for a dive into what backflow is and how you can prevent it from happening. 

What Is Backflow?

Backflow happens when water pressure inside of your home or building changes due to a disruption in the system. This change in pressure causes contaminated water to flow back into the main supply line, entering the clean water supply lines and potentially contaminating them with unhealthy materials like pesticides, fertilisers, industrial waste and other pollutants. 

The most common cause of backflow is an issue with the plumbing system or a failing check valve. A check valve helps to control the flow of water in a system by preventing water from flowing backwards through pipes which can lead to backflow. If this valve fails, it may allow contaminated water to seep back into the clean water supply lines. Other causes of backflow include broken pipes or connections, faulty fixtures or hoses left running for extended periods of time. 

How To Prevent Backflow

Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to ensure that your plumbing remains safe from backflow incidents: 

  • Check all valves regularly for signs of wear and tear. Valves should be inspected on a regular basis for any cracks or breaks in their seals which could lead to back flow incidents. Make sure all valves are operating properly at all times so that no contaminants enter your system.


  • Install an isolation valve. An isolation valve will help prevent cross connection between clean and contaminated sources which could cause back flow incidents if not prevented properly. These valves should be installed wherever necessary in order to avoid any potential issues with contamination entering your main supply line. 


  •  Regularly inspect hoses and fixtures. Leaky hoses or fixtures can easily create a pathway for contaminants to enter your clean water supply lines so make sure they’re checked regularly for any signs of wear or damage which could lead to a potential issue down the road.   


  • Call a professional. If you’re having trouble identifying potential sources of contamination or if you’re just unsure about what steps need to be taken, don’t hesitate to contact a professional plumber who can give you some advice on how best to protect yourself against such an incident occurring in the future. 


While it can be rare, backflow is a dangerous phenomenon that must be taken seriously by homeowners everywhere as it has potential serious health implications for those living near affected areas, as well as damaging effects on our infrastructure systems and our environment overall.

Contact us

Plumbform are the 24/7 emergency plumbing experts in the Brisbane and the bayside. Our team is ready to provide any plumbing installation, drain, or leak detection services you may require. We pride ourselves on our no-obligation quotes and consultations and we offer upfront pricing on every job. No hidden costs. Request a booking or quote today or contact us on 04 2479 4641 now.

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