Licking County Backflow Prevention Program

Every time you turn on a faucet in your home you expect a flow of high-quality drinking water. Safe, clean drinking water is not something we should take for granted. Every utility customer can play a role in protecting our water and ensure we have clean water every time we turn on the faucet.

Do you know that common hazards in and around your house can contaminate your drinking water as well as your neighbors? These hazards are known as “cross-connections” and can result in contaminated water backflowing into your home’s drinking water supply without you even knowing.

What is a Cross-Connection?
Any physical connection created between a possible source of contamination and any drinking water system piping.

Why be concerned?
ALL cross-connections pose a potential health risk. 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. Chemical burns, fires, explosions, poisonings, illness and death have all been caused by backflow through cross-connections.

What are some common residential cross-connection hazards?

  • Hose connections to chemical solution aspirators to feed lawn and tree herbicides.
  • Lawn irrigation systems.
  • Chemically treated heating systems/boilers.
  • Hose connections to a water outlet or laundry basin.
  • Swimming pools, hot tubs, and spas.
  • Private and/or non-potable water supply sources located on the property.
  • Water-operated sump pump drain devices.
  • Feedlots/livestock holding areas or barnyards fed through pipes or hoses from your water supply plumbing.

What can I do?

  • Complete the "Cross-Connection Control Survey". Please contact us below if you have not completed one.
  • Be aware of and eliminate cross-connections.
  • Maintain air gaps. Do not submerge hoses or place them where they could become submerged.
  • Use hose bib vacuum breakers on fixtures (hose connections in the basement, laundry room and outside).
  • Do not create a connection between an auxiliary water system (well, cistern, body of water) and the water supply plumbing.
  • Install approved, testable backflow prevention devices if lawn irrigation systems, auxiliary water system, or boilers are present.
  • If a device is required it must be tested every 12 months by a licensed Backflow Testing Company and submitted to the County to ensure compliance.

What must be done to protect the public water system?
The Licking County Water/Wastewater Department must determine potential and actual hazards. If a hazard exists at a customer’s water supply service connection, the customer will be required to install and maintain an appropriate backflow prevention device at the meter and/or at the source of the hazard.

For more information on Licking County’s Backflow Prevention Program please contact the Utilities Director, Ryan Brown at 740-928-0302 or via our general email box at

Licking County Backflow Prevention Regulations can be found here, ( Link )

Ohio EPA Backflow Prevention Brochure can be found here, ( Link )