What I'm Seeing Now


Leaking Back Flow Prevention Valve

The case of the leaking back flow prevention valve.

A back flow prevention valve is required in some jurisdictions.  It simply prevents water from a boiler or hydronic heating system from getting into and contaminating drinking water for the house.  The circulating hot water should be contained within the system and kept separated.

This is a circulating, hot water boiler system.

When I run into these in older homes and the boiler is very old I often do not see a back flow prevention valve.

The boiler in this house had been replaced in previous years, and was not very old.  When the old boiler was replaced a new back flow prevention valve was installed.

However, for whatever reason, this one was leaking.

This pin-hole leak had caused rust and oxidation, as water and air are wont to do, and dripping water could be seen on my finger after rubbing under the rust.

My recommendation:  during inspections we see what we see.  Some things need immediate attention.  A plumbing leak is one of those things as leaks can often get very bad very quickly.  This is a simple fix for a professional plumber, and the valves are not very expensive. 



Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560


Comment balloon 6 commentsJay Markanich • October 18 2016 04:39AM


I always learn something new from your posts. Thank you for   sharing.

Posted by Gita Bantwal, REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel (RE/MAX Centre Realtors) almost 4 years ago

I very much enjoyed your post today. We are looking forward to more insightful ones.

Posted by Harry F. D'Elia III, Investor , Mentor, GRI, Radio, CIPS, REOs, ABR (RentVest) almost 4 years ago

That's the idea, Gita.  Thanks.

And thank you Harry.  I try...

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

I always enjoy your posts - you share such incredibly useful information and break it down so we can understand it

Posted by Lise Howe, Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC (Keller Williams Capital Properties) almost 4 years ago

Good morning Jay. Owners often overlook minor fixes! Enjoy your day!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker - Retired (Wayne M Martin) almost 4 years ago

I'm glad you do, Lise.  I try to find things that will be interesting and instructive for my posts.

They do, Wayne.  Why leave this hanging out there before an inspection?  It needs attention one way or the other way.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

This blog does not allow anonymous comments