Cross Connection & Backflow Prevention

Safe drinking water is the responsibility of everyone! State regulations require all customers protect CPWS from potential cross contamination.

Every effort will be made to secure the voluntary cooperation of the customer in correcting cross connection hazards. However, water service may be discontinued for the health and safety of the other customers in the district, if voluntary action cannot be obtained within a reasonable period of time

Yearly testing is required for backflow devices. Call (931) 388-4833 to discuss fees.

Preventing Backflow Situations In Your Home & Business

  • Be aware of cross connections and the need to eliminate or isolate them.
  • Maintain air gaps on sinks and when using hoses.
  • Do not submerge hoses or place hoses where they can become submerged.
  • Install approved backflow prevention devices on lawn irrigation systems and fire sprinkler systems
  • All backflows are required a Y-strainer.
  • Use hose bib vacuum breakers on fixtures and hose connections for basements, laundry rooms, and on outside faucets/spigots.

Is it Really Important to Prevent Backflow?

Absolutely! The Tennessee Division of Water Supply requires all public water systems to operate an ongoing program to protect the water supply from contamination and possible cross connections or backflow.

Requiring customers to install a backflow prevention device on the main supply line for the property is the best way for CPWS to meet this requirement. This protects CPWS from any cross connection or backflow that may be inside a customer’s plumbing system. All CPWS water users benefit from an active, ongoing cross connection program that includes the installation of backflow prevention devices.


Cross Connection: Any actual or physical connection between a potable (drinkable) water supply and any source of non-potable liquid, solid, or gas that could contaminate drinking water under certain circumstances.

Backflow: The reverse flow of water or substances into the treated drinking water distribution system. There are two types of backflow: backpressure and backsiphonage.

Backpressure: When the pressure of the contaminant source exceeds the positive pressure in the water distribution main. An example would be when a drinking water supply main has a connection to a hot water boiler system that is not protected by an approved and functioning backflow preventer. If pressure in the boiler system increases to where it exceeds the pressure in the water distribution system, backflow from the boiler to the drinking water supply may occur.

Backsiphonage: A negative pressure (vacuum or partial vacuum) in the water distribution system. The situation is similar in effect to the sipping of water through a straw. In the drinking water distribution system, negative pressure (backsiphonage) occurs during a water main break or when a hydrant is used for fire fighting.

Download Cross Connection and Backflow Prevention Brochure (PDF)