Backflow & Cross Connection Program

The Town of Windsor requires all business and industries serviced by Town of Windsor Water to have their backflow devices tested by a certified tester and results are sent to them annually. This requirement includes, but is not limited to backflow devices on service mains, fire suppression systems, process lines, and sprinkler supply lines. Homeowner testing of residential sprinkler supply line backflow devices is on a voluntary basis at this time. Mandatory testing of residential sprinkler supply line backflow devices will be required at a later date.   

What is Backflow?

Back flow means water flowing backwards into the water supply system.  There are two ways back flow can enter the water supply from a sprinkler system; back siphonage and back pressure. Back siphonage happens when the pressure in the water supply suddenly drops. Pressure drops can happen because of nearby firefighting or repairs of breaks in the Town water main. The pressure drop creates a vacuum, sucking the water backward through the system. The vacuum is much like a person sipping on a straw, which causes liquid to flow in the opposite direction. Back pressure is also reversal of water flow in the water system. However, this type of reversal happens when water pressure increases on the customer's side of the water system. Examples of things that can cause pressure increases in your sprinkler system would be injection fertilizing or blowing out the system in the fall.

Submit backflow reports to Utility Supervisor Charwon Walter.

What is Cross Connection?

The Colorado Cross Connection Law applies to all cross connections. Cross connection is any actual or potential connection between a potable water system, the drinking water supply and any other source or system that can introduce contaminants into the treated water system. Contaminants from your sprinkler system may include fertilizers, pesticides, and weed killers. Any part of the sprinkler system that allows back flow to occur is called a cross connection.

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  1. Colorado Connection Highlights

Atmospheric vacuum breakers cannot be used against back pressure conditions. Valves cannot be installed downstream from atmospheric vacuum breakers. Testing is required upon installation of a new back flow prevention device and annually thereafter by a certified tester. The law applies to both new installations and sprinkler systems that are being repaired or modified. No grandfather clause exists.

What are the Responsibilities?

  1. State Health Agency
  2. Local Health Agency
  3. Water Supplier
  4. Consumer
  • A state health agency’s primary responsibility is to ensure that the water supplier operates the public potable water system free of actual or potential sanitary hazards.
  • Second they must ensure that the water supplier of the public water system meets federal and state drinking water standards.
  • Third, the agency must ensure that the water supplier provides an approved water supply at the point of delivery to the consumer’s water system and also require the consumer to install, test, and maintain an approved backflow prevention assembly on the service connection if needed.