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Backflow Prevention Assembly Testers

Backflow Prevention Assembly Testers

How to find a tester

Currently, the Backflow Prevention Program cannot recommend testers nor does the city keep a list of testers.

If you are in need of a tester, you can find one by:

  1. Consulting With Your Current Plumber or Contractor - these professions usually hold their own certification or know someone who can test your assembly. Whomever you select to test your backflow prevention assembly must be certified to do so. Testers must hold a current certification from either The American Backflow Prevention Association, or The American Society of Sanitary Engineers.
  2. Checking Your Assembly - Generally your existing backflow prevention assembly has been tested before and should have a tag from the previous tester that shows the tester's or testing company phone number.
  3. Visiting the Colorado Division of Fire Prevention & Control website if you're looking for someone who can also test assemblies on fire lines. Click on "Fire Suppression Systems" and then on "Backflow Contractors."

How assemblies are tested

Backflow prevention assemblies are tested by certified testers who use gauges to either add or relieve pressure to determine if the internal parts are working properly. This information is recorded on a backflow prevention assembly test report. Testers or owners are required to submit test reports to the Backflow Prevention Program at [email protected].

What test form should be used?

The City of Boulder's Backflow Prevention Program uses a Universal Test Form created, used and accepted by backflow programs across Colorado. Incomplete or incorrectly filled out forms will be returned to the tester.

Passing tests

When the backflow prevention assembly passes the test, the tester must submit a copy to the Backflow Prevention Progam within 10 days from the test date. This information will be recorded by the program and testing will not be required until the following year. Water suppliers, testers and customers must all retain test report records for three years.

Failing tests

Backflow prevention assemblies that fail a test must be repaired and/or replaced immediately. The Backflow Prevention Program must be verbally notified the same day and the failing test should be submitted within three days. If the repair or replacement cannot be made immediately, the Backflow Prevention Program must be notified and a compliance plan must be established.

As a failed backflow prevention assembly test represents a direct cross-connection, failure to repair/replace and test an assembly can result in suspension of water service if the Backflow Prevention Program determines that the cross-connection represents an immediate risk to public health.

Keeping copies of test reports
Regulation 11 - Section 11.39 of the Colorado Primary Drinking Water Regulation states that backflow prevention assembly test reports should be kept for three years by the water supplier, the tester and the customer.

Tester certification information
Backflow prevention assembly testers must be certified by one of two National Certifying Agencies:

  • The American Backflow Prevention Association (ABPA)
  • The American Society of Sanitary Engineers (ASSE)

Both organizations re-test every three years and anyone testing a backflow prevention assembly must have a current certification on the date of the test.