Backflow Prevention Program

Understanding Backflow and Cross Connection Control

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency requires the City of Akron, a water purveyor, to maintain a continuing program of cross connection control to protect the public water supply from possible contamination due to backflow. These requirements are in accordance with Chapter XII of the Akron Public Utilities Bureau Rules and Regulations and the Ohio Administrative Code Chapter 3745-95.

What is Backflow?

  • Backflow is the reversal of proper flow of water back into the public water supply. Backflow occurs when the pressure in a customer’s pipes is greater than the pressure of the water mains.
                                Backsiphonage                                                                          Backpressure
                                           Reverse flow caused by a loss of supply pressure                An increase in water pressure caused by the elevation
                                                                                                               or mechanical pumping that raises the system in pressure
                                                                                                               above the supply pressure.

                    backsiphonage              backpressure

What is Cross Connection?

  • A cross connection is a connection of piping between drinking water and a possible source of contamination.

Why should I be concerned?

  • ALL cross-connections pose a potential health risk. Chemical burns, fires, explosives, poisonings, illness, and death have all been caused by Backflow through cross-connections.
  • Backflow can be a health hazard for your family or other consumers if contaminated water enters your water supply plumbing system and is used for drinking, cooking, or bathing.
  • Backflow happens more often than you think.

What can I do?

  • Comply with City of Akron Backflow Prevention Mandates
  • Educate yourself on potential hazards and how to prevent them

The Akron Water Supply Backflow Prevention Program has partnered with BSI Online to make backflow test reporting easier and more efficient.

  • Water customers can locate a backflow test contractor, request an extension on their testing, or check the status of their testing on the website.
  • Plumber/ contractors submit the reports through the BSI Online portal.


For more information please visit their website at  

Downloadable Content:

bsi_brochure      backflow_brochure