West Des Moines Water Works
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Backflow prevention 

West Des Moines Water Works works diligently to deliver safe and reliable drinking water to its customers. This effort begins with protecting our water supply sources and continues through the entire conveyance, treatment and distribution process until the water reaches your service line. The prevention of backflow into the public water supply is an integral part of ensuring safe drinking water.  


The water distribution system is designed to allow water to travel in one direction from the treatment plant to the customer. Under certain conditions, water can flow in the opposite direction from the normal flow. This unwanted process is known as backflow. When this occurs, potentially harmful contaminants can mix with drinking water and threaten the safety of our potable water supply.


Essentially, backflow prevention devices are valves that prevent water from your home or business from going back into the City's water system in the event of a sudden loss of pressure in the distribution system. Irrigation systems are the first priority for backflow prevention programs because of the possibility of contamination from lawn chemicals, pet waste or other pollutants.


West Des Moines Water Works manages an active backflow and cross-connection prevention program. This program is required under state and local plumbing codes and is designed to prevent the possible contamination of the public water supply through backflow from customers’ facilities.  You can read more about the City of West Des Moines's backflow requirements in City Code and the West Des Moines Backflow requirements in our installation, operation and maintenance of water service pipes, fire service pipes and water meters regulations.  Failure to maintain and test a required backflow prevention device could result in water being shut off for non-compliance.  


Click here to view WDM Water Works Cross Connection Control Program Standards for Protective Devices for Containment. 


West Des Moines Water Works' cross connection control program (backflow prevention) is managed by Backflow Solutions, Inc (BSI). Through the use of a web-based tracking program called BSI Online, BSI provides a more efficient and cost effective means of managing the city’s inventory of backflow prevention assemblies.


For questions regarding your backflow prevention device test, please contact BSI Online at [email protected] or at 888-966-6050


If you do not plan to use your lawn irrigation system the requirement to test your backflow prevention device can be waived by filling out and returning a Certification Not to Test Form to the addresses noted on the top of the form.


The State of Iowa maintains a list of registered backflow assembly testers. This list can be obtained from the Iowa Department of Public Health – Backflow Prevention Assembly Tester Program.  West Des Moines Water works employees cannot test backflow devices for customers.