Tips for Homeowners.

What are backwater valves and backwater valve installation?

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Backwater valve device installation should be provided only by licensed and insured plumbing company.
Backflow of water from sewerage lines is a headache. When the main line is blocked the basement is filled with water, debris, and sewage. The backflow of water causes damage to your property, and belonging and harms your health. Preventing water flow back into homes requires some measures. The most common step is to install a basement flooding prevention device.

Backwater valve:

Backwater valves in the main line are necessary when you live in areas susceptible to rains and flooding. A backwater valve is a small device that prevents the water flow that comes back in flood scenarios. Depending on the type of the sewer valve this device automatically closes when there is excessive water flow in the main line in flood situations. The valve has a flap that remains open to allow the normal flow of water and sewer through the main line. The flap closes down in case of flooding and stops the backflow of water.

Importance of backwater valve installation:

Homeowners tend to ignore the backwater valve installation, but it is a necessary step to ensure security from flooding, prevent property damage, and avoiding any possible health hazards. A backwater valve is an added layer of security to protect from storms and recurrent floods. Even if your building is not floodproof, a drain backwater valve prevents the flow of flooded water. The valves also avoid the backflow of sewer debris when the main line is blocked due to pipe damage, debris blockage, or snow and hail. Backwater valves also referred to as sewer line valves are installed near the basement or ground floor. The position of the valve depends on where the water from the house is backing up. Valve installation is necessary when you live in the basement or ground floor.

Backwater valve installation might seem expensive but they are a beneficial investment. These valves will avoid future damage to your property. Even the slightest overflow in the sewer line causes damage to your belongings like sofa, furniture, carpet, etc. Sewer line flow comes with a foul smell and germs, and diseases. To avoid future damage, make sure to invest in backwater valve installation today.

Furthermore, some municipal governments offer a backwater valve installation rebate. A rebate encourages homeowners to install a backwater valve to avoid future damages and save themselves from high repair costs.

Types of backwater valves:

Numerous types of backwater valves prevent backup of sewer debris, water, and contaminated flooded water through shower drain, kitchen drain, bathtub, and toilet.

Check Valves: Check valves are one-way valves. It means that once the sewer or contaminated water flows from the check valve it cannot return. During flood scenarios, when the water tries to flow back into the main line, the check valve sense and automatically closes the valve. The automatic system of check valves prevents the water flow and keeps your mind at peace. The installation and operation of check valves are necessary. However, checking valves requires high maintenance, so you have to check the valve every year. Make sure to check valves after flooding situations. Check valves are effective but after large debris, the automatic function of the valve does not work. A check valve is a low-cost option but it is high maintenance. A type of check valve is the dual check valve. The dual valve adds a blanket of security. If the automatic function of one valve is not working then the second valve is tightened enough to function properly.

Combination Valve: The combination Valve is the most expensive. It is a combination of a chamber and a gate. The gate is filled with air that senses the flood water. The expensive cost of a combination valve is justified because hardly a malfunction occurs during the operation. The combination valve automatically stops the backwater flow when it senses the flood. The combination valve has an alarm that will warn you when it senses the overflow. After the warning, you can quickly shut the valve. The combination valve closes the lines during flooding during this time water will not come into the bathroom and kitchen tops.

Gate Valve: Gate valve as the name refers to functions like a gate. One needs to open or close the gate valve manually. Gate valves have both functions they operate manually and automatically. During flooding scenarios, you have to manually close the valve. The manual function allows you to close the valve and clear the blockages within the sewer line.

Plug Valve: Plug valves are one-way valves with a hollow space. Plug valves are good for low-pressure water flow. There is a quarter motion on the head of the plug valve. The motion of the plug valve ensures the opening and closing of the valve during water flow. However, plug valves are not recommended by the government. The valve stores the water near the basement and does not ensure a proper water flow.

Is backwater valve installation permittable?

Backwater valve installation is mandatory in some states. In Toronto, backwater valve installation requires a permit. After applying to the municipal government, you need to keep the record papers with you for at least seven years. You can apply online as well. The application process does not take long. Once you get the permit, seek a licensed plumber. Make sure that the plumber checks your lines before installing any valve. The Canadian government recommends not installing plug valves. Remember to purchase a good quality valve to ensure maximum security against flood back flowing. The subsidy for the installation of the backwater valve is available for Toronto, and GTA cities. Homeowner has to check with the municipality about type of backwater valve they approve, and any other available subsidy program they have to offer like Basement Flooding Subsidy Program in Toronto (backwater valve and sump pump installation).

Points to remember before backwater valve installation:

  • Test the valve before installing. Check the valve functioning after 70-72 hours. Check the valves at least two times per year.
  • Make sure, you have the permit to install a backwater valve.
  • The backwater valve installation should be completed by a professional and licensed plumber.
  • Consult the municipal government on where to install the valve.
  • Seek the advice of the municipal government or a certified plumber on the type of valve that is necessary.
  • Check if the government is offering any subsidy on the valve installation.