Frequently Asked Questions

Cross Connection Control Home Page

IMPORTANT NOTES:

Q1. Cost To Install a Backflow Device?

Q2. What is the Cross Connection Control (CCC) Program?

Q3. What is a Cross Connection?

Q4. What is Backflow?

Q5. What about Inspections?

Q6. Backflow Prevention Device or Assembly?

Q7. Replacing a Backflow Device?\

Q8. What is a non-testable Dual Check Valve?

Q9. Why are backflow prevention devices required on homes on the harbor channels?

Q10. Who is responsible for backflow devices when they malfunction or they are required to be installed or tested?

Q11. Annual Backflow Device Test Reports?

Q12. What if I am delayed in complying with the due date?

Q13. What is a Certified Tester?

Q14. What are Cross Connection Control Specialists/Inspectors?

Q15. IMPORTANT NOTICE FOR BACKFLOW DEVICES ON FIRE SERVICES:

Q16. Building & Safety advised me that Cross Connection Control has a hold on my permit/project, what should I do?

Answers below:

 

Q1. Cost To Install a Backflow Device?

A. Contractors want to see the work they are bidding on before they commit to the job. Some contractors may give a bid over the phone on minor projects and with your detailed description. Email of details for your job and photos may help. Otherwise, arrangements for access to the work area will need to be made with the contractor. Retrieving bids from 3 different contractors is a normal practice to achieve a representative market value for the job. The difference in bids may be explained by the details you provide each of them and the variation of services and warranties they include in the bid, for example.

Q2. What is the Cross Connection Control (CCC) Program?
A. The CCC program is adopted into a City ordinance, based from the State Code of Regulation (Title 17) which requires water purveyors to maintain certain elements and functions to prevent cross connections and backflow into the public water system.

Q3. What is a Cross Connection?
A. A cross connection is a connection between a drinking water source (pipeline) and a source (pipeline, equipment) that can become or is a potential source of pollution or contamination. (e.g. a landscape sprinkler system)

Q4. What is Backflow?
A. Backflow is the flow of water in a pipeline that is flowing (siphoning or pumped) in the reverse direction. This can occur when the water is shut off for repairs, there is an accidental pressure loss, or the pressure on site becomes higher than system pressure because of a pump being improperly used by the water customer.

Q5. What about Inspections?

A. Inspections, surveys, or evaluations are conducted by HB Cross Connection Control Specialists (and/or O. C. Healthcare Agency Environmental Specialist). The purpose is to evaluate the degree of hazard within a customer's premises, in accordance with HB Ord. 14.16.190, Sec. VI - Administrative Procedures, A. Water System Survey. Based on the inspection, backflow device requirements are determined and the customer is notified of the findings. Inspections are conducted on an unannounced basis. Your cooperation is very much appreciated.

Q6. Backflow Prevention Device or Assembly?
A. Otherwise known as simply, a “backflow device,” is the brass colored plumbing fixture appearing in the frontage of businesses and inside. Among others, there are three basic types of testable backflow devices: 1) most required and used for protection at the meter and higher hazards is the Reduced Pressure Principle Device (RP), 2) the Pressure Type Vacuum Breaker (PVB) sometimes seen on landscape sprinkler systems , and 3) the least required and used for lower level hazards is the Double Check Valve or Double Check Detector Check Valve Assembly which is designed to protect fire sprinkler systems at the service connection. These three devices operate based on one-way check valves and pressure or vacuum release mechanisms or valves, allowing the water to pass through the device in one direction, breaking vacuum or releasing excess pressure threatening to overcome system pressure.

Q7. Replacing a Backflow Device?
A. Backflow devices have internal moving parts and therefore they will eventually wear out and need repairs or replacing. Before replacing your device, it is required to be evaluated by a CCC Specialist to confirm that it will be replaced with the proper device and installed in the proper location. There are a few scenarios that may need to be addressed and this would be the time to make the improvements. Please call for details when your device needs to be replaced.

Q8. What is a non-testable Dual Check Valve?
A. A non-testable dual check valve is a backflow prevention device designed for very low potential health hazards, such as single family residents (without a boat dock or other unique potential health hazards). The Federal EPA Cross Connection Manual includes the installation of dual check valves on residential homes, which prevents water inside of the home from back-flowing into the city water system. In the City of Huntington Beach, dual check-valves can be installed only on 3-story homes, instead of the RP. Dual check valves can be confused with the testable “Double Check Valves” and most all manufactures provide both types.

Q9. Why are (RP) backflow prevention devices required for homes on the harbor channels?
A. Homes on the harbor channels are one of several potential health hazards to the drinking water system. California Health Code Title 17 specifically addresses “dockside watering points” and “marine facilities,” requiring backflow protection. Boat docks are unique in that there are many activities which require water use in potentially hazardous ways, such as a bilge pump, high pressure washer, sewage holding tank maintenance, refilling onboard water tanks, or simply a garden hose accidentally left in the sea water. Many homes have previously been built without the proper protection and will be required to install the specified backflow device, once they have been inspected by Cross Connection Control and have been notified to make the correction. If you suspect that your home should have backflow protection, please contact Cross Connection Control to get more information.

Q10. Who is responsible for backflow devices when they malfunction or they are required to be installed or tested?
A. The regulation says that backflow prevention devices are to be installed and maintained by the water user and they are considered to be their private property. The devices may be near or even in the public right-of-way sometimes, but it is the customer’s responsibility to maintain and make any necessary repairs, for example, in the case of an auto accident. The City is limited to using public resources up to the water meter in order to maintain water service to private property. The responsibility between tenant and landlord is not determined by the City.

Q11. Annual Backflow Device Test Reports?
A. In order to comply with the California Department of Public Health regulations, the City’s ordinance requires customers to have their backflow devices tested by a certified tester at least annually and allows them 1 month and 2 weeks to submit the test reports. A 30 day due notice is required to be sent to the customer and then a 2 week shut off notice can be sent. Enforcement policies have been revised to allow for a little more time as cited in the notifications. However, delinquent fees and discontinuance of water service are included in the process.

Q12. What if I am delayed in complying with the due date?
A. If you are a customer concerned about the discontinuance of your water service because of a notice you received, you need to have a completed passing certified test report submitted to Cross Connection Control before the due date. A tester can be found on the certified testers list to do the work, usually within a couple of days. Request for extensions can be reviewed only within a few days of the due date. Requests must include the service address, the name of the tester that has been hired, the date the tester will complete the repairs and/or test report, and your phone number. Cross Connection Control Fax # (714) 375-5159

Q13. What is a Certified Tester?

A. A certified (backflow device) tester is a person certified by the Orange County Health Care Agency to test backflow devices. The City of Huntington Beach provides a list of certified testers who have submitted an application and proof of a business certificate with the City. They are considered to be private companies who represent only themselves and their services separately from the City. If you have any questions about compliance, you will need to contact the City's Cross Connection Control section.

Q14. What are Cross Connection Control Specialists/Inspectors?
A. Cross Connection Control Specialist are certified Utilities Division staff who enforce the City’s CC ordinance and have the responsibility to ensure that the City, as a water purveyor, is complying with state health department requirements and properly administering the cross connection control program.

Q15. IMPORTANT NOTICE FOR BACKFLOW DEVICES ON FIRE SERVICES:

A. In accordance with the Huntington Beach Fire Code all back flow preventers that supply water for on-site fire suppression systems will be required to be tested and maintained by a certified and licensed contractor. The contractor will conduct the testing and maintenance in accordance with Section 508.4 and Section 901.6 of the Huntington Beach Fire Code. Failure to comply with the Fire code will result in a written violation and potentially an issuance of a citation up to $1,000.00.

Q16. Building & Safety advised me that Cross Connection Control has a hold on my permit/project, what should I do?

A. Notes from a CCC Specialist should be on record within the permit database.

In order to have your plan approved, you will need to contact your architect and have them incorporate the standard cut sheets for backflow devices (609A, 609, 618) into the pending plans. OR provide a (8 ½ x 11) hand drawn diagram of the building, referencing the same cut sheet standards, their locations, and the water meters. Attach a business card and a signed copy of the revisions to the pending plans (include the permit number) and send a copy of the revised portion of the plans to the Utilities Division, Cross Connection Control section or fax a copy to (714) 375-5159. An approval response can be immediate or could take up to 1 working day after receiving the proposal. (Prior to installation, contact with a CCC Specialist will need to be made by the installer.)


Backflow Device Permitting Requirements

Cross Connection Control Home Page

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Contact Information

City of Huntington Beach
Public Works Department
2000 Main Street
Huntington Beach, CA
Phone: (714) 536-5431
Fax: (714) 374-1573
Email:  
Staff Directory

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