Backflow Prevention

What is Backflow?

Backflow can be described as “a reversal of the normal direction of flow within a piping system or as “the flow of water or other liquids, mixtures or substances into the distribution pipes of a potable water supply from any source other than the intended source of the potable water supply.

The potential for a backflow condition occurring in a water system is all too likely in many of our homes, factories, and public buildings. The existence of improper plumbing connections presents cross-connections that may, under backflow conditions, permit the water to flow the wrong way within the piping.

The probability of backflow at any given outlet may be minimal. But given a large number of service connections, the multiple cross-connections at each service connection, and the potential for cross-connections to be created, the probability becomes very significant and must be dealt with positively.

What is Cross-Connection?

A cross-connection can be described as “any arrangement whereby backflow can occur” or as “any arrangement of pipes, fittings, fixtures, or devices that connects a non-potable water system to a potable water system.” It is the point at which a water-using fixture is connected to the water user’s potable water system.

An unprotected cross-connection provides the path or route through which backflow can occur.

It can be:

  • Permanent or temporary
  • Actual or potential
  • Direct (subject to backpressure & back siphonage) such as a boiler or indirect (subject to back-siphonage only) such as a toilet tank fill valve

Some of the more common examples are:

  • boiler make-up lines
  • chiller make-up lines
  • fire protection systems
  • spray hoses
  • suction tees or aspirators
  • urinals
  • tanks or vats with a submerged inlet
  • X-ray & photo developing equipment
  • irrigation systems
  • commercial grade dishwashers
  • hand-held lawn sprayers
  • pressure washers
  • commercial grade garbage disposals or grinders
  • soap, sanitizer, or wax induction systems
  • a janitor’s sink with a hose attached
  • hose bibs with a hose attached
  • toilet tanks

Please report any suspected cross-connections to the Village of East Canton Service Department at

(330) 936-6094

Completed surveys can be submitted to: 

The Village of East Canton Water Department
130 Cedar St
East Canton, OH 44730