Irrigation Safety 101: Backflow, When?
When do you test your backflow?
ALL backflows need to be tested upon installation, repair and on an annual basis. Now you should only need one backflow test a year, so your installation test is good for a year and same with any repairs.
When do you winterize your backflow?
ALL backflows NEED to be winterized before the first frost. Since the majority of them are outside and above ground they need to be prepped before cold temperatures arise. After the backflow is winterize we follow recommended guidelines and leave the shutoff valves and test ports @ 45 degrees
When do you turn it on for the summer?
DON’T turn the backflow on until there is NO chance of frost. Before turning the water valve on that feeds the backflow you need to turn OFF the shut off valves and test ports. Once you have turned on the feeder valve you will then need to turn on the #1 shutoff valve (pretty fast) until the backflow stops discharging any water. Then open the #2 shutoff valve slowly until the irrigation mainline is under full pressure. Side note: remember to check all of the irrigation valves to make sure that the bleeder screws and solenoids are turned off.
When do you rebuild your backflow?
It actually depends on the quality of water you have but on the average it is every 5 years.