Much of the equipment we use to provide water is located beneath the ground, and it can be difficult for customers to determine what equipment is their responsibility and what equipment is Aqua’s responsibility. The following descriptions explain the facilities and equipment used to provide water service from the company’s water main to your property. The diagrams below detail the homeowner's and Aqua's responsibility.
- Company Service Line. Owned and maintained by the company, this service line extends from the water main to the curb stop or curb line.
- Curb Stop. Owned and maintained by the company, the curb stop is a valve that can be opened and closed to control the supply of water to the property.
- Meter. Owned and installed by the company, this device is used to measure water consumption at the customer’s property. Although the meter is owned by the company, the customer is responsible for providing an adequate location for the meter, making it accessible and assuring that it is protected from damage, including damage caused by freezing.
- Customer Service Line. Owned and maintained by the customer, this service line extends from the curb stop or curb line to the building.
- Meter Pit. Owned and maintained by the customer, this structure is constructed by, or for, the customer to house the water meter outside of the customer’s home at an underground location. Customers are responsible for keeping the pit visible and for all the plumbing within the pit. The illustration shows a meter in the home, so the meter pit is not shown.
- Pressure Reducing Valve (PRV). Owned, installed and maintained by the customer, this device is designed to reduce water pressure within the customer’s home if the pressure of the company’s distribution system exceeds a certain threshold set by the plumbing code (typically 60 pounds per square inch). Installing a PRV might increase the life of internal plumbing fixtures and piping. A plumber can verify the pressure in your home and determine whether a PRV should be installed as part of your household plumbing.
- Backflow preventor: Customer owned. When installed, this device is designed to prevent a potential backflow of contaminants from the customer’s property into the company’s distribution system.
A cross-connection is a point in plumbing systems where drinking water might come in contact with, and be contaminated by, hazardous materials — solid, liquid or gas.
If you leave a hose in non-potable (not fit for drinking) water such as soapy or pool water, you could contaminate your drinking water. For example, if the pressure in the water main feeding your property drops while your hose is submerged in non-potable water, the non-potable water could be sucked back into your pipes or into Aqua’s distribution main.
The Safe Water Drinking Act requires that backflow protection devices be installed on all non-potable water services.
Here are some plumbing tips to help you avoid backflow:
- Install backflow-prevention devices on threaded faucets in your home, especially outdoor hose faucets. Inexpensive backflow preventers, like hose connection vacuum breakers, can be found at many local plumbing supply stores.
- Keep the ends of hoses clear of any possible contaminants. Never leave a hose in a sink, bucket, drain or tub. Also, keep water levels in such items below faucets and inlet valves.
- Don’t use spray-device attachments that contain chemicals, such as weed killers, on your hose without a backflow prevention device.