Backflow Testing

We do backflow testing in your neighborhood!

Cross-Connection Control, Backflow Prevention, and Water Quality

Your neighbors have entrusted us to do the backflow testing on their sprinkler systems. You may have received a notice from the city that your device is due for testing as well.

Backflow devices protect the public water supply from contamination. A backflow device on your sprinkler system prevents the reverse flow of contaminated water from the sprinklers back into the city water supply. Lawns and landscapes contain fertilizers, chemicals, bacteria, dirt, fungus, and other hazards.

Cross-connections can occur between the PWS distribution system and private irrigation systems, fire sprinkler systems, and other piping systems that receive PWS drinking water. These hazards can contaminate your drinking water if not properly protected and cause serious health risks to the public.

The EPA requires backflow devices. Your municipality requires annual testing to ensure devices continue to work properly.

Sanitary surveys, conducted at least once every three years for community water systems and once every five years for non-community PWSs, offer opportunities to identify potential cross-connections that put public health at risk.

Indicators of a Cross-Connection and Backflow Incident

  • Customer complaints of odor, discoloration of water, or direct physical harm are the primary indicators of a backflow incident.
  • Decreases in water pressure can indicate the occurrence of a backflow incident, as well as suggest where the incident may have occurred.
  • A short-term reduction in disinfectant residual could indicate a potential backflow incident.
  • During periods of reversed flow, water meters might run in reverse.

Backflow device PVB


$175.50 New Customer Rate, One Device
(Regular Rate $195.00)

$148.50 Each Additional Device

You will receive a copy of your test for your records,
the municipality receives a copy as required,
and C & R Plumbing keeps a copy on file.

Appointments available Monday thru Friday


Fall Home Maintenance Checklist

Just like that, in true Michigan fashion,

summer is gone and fall has arrived!

Fall in Michigan brings with it some memorable traditions – visits to the cider mill for warm cinnamon donuts and crisp apple cider, family bonfires and hayrides, carving pumpkins, and nature’s breathtaking palette of color everywhere the eye can see.

Some traditions, although not as exciting, are just necessary as the seasons change – our fall home maintenance. We have put together a Fall Home Maintenance Checklist so you can be sure not to miss anything! As always, if you run into any problems, give us a call and we can give you a hand.


  • OUTDOOR FAUCETS: Close the shut off valves on inside faucets and leave the faucet in the on position. Cover faucets with a styrofoam or plastic cap. Drain all hoses. Drain and winterize sprinkler systems.
  • WATER HEATER: Insulate with a water heater blanket. Consider replacing a unit that is older than 10 years for maximum efficiency. Newer models save energy and may be eligible for rebates. It is much more economical to buy a new heater than to repair an old one!
  • PIPES: Insulate outdoor or exposed pipes with foam wrap. Remember pipes in crawl spaces, garages and under your sinks, especially if they are on an outer wall.
  • WATER SHUTOFF: Take the time to locate your main water shutoff if you don’t already know where it is. If a pipe freezes and bursts, you will need to shut the water off to your house. The shut off may be by the water heater or at the meter.
  • SEPTIC/SEWER SYSTEM: Have your sewer or septic system checked by a professional at least every two to three years. Inspections may find problems before you even know they are there.


  • Check your furnace by turning your heat on before it gets cold to make sure everything is working properly. Don’t wait until we have frigid temperatures and be without heat!
  • The most important thing you can do is inspect and change your filters once a month in your heating system. A dirty filter makes the system less efficient and damages equipment, leading to early failure. Changing the filter every 30-90 days is recommended, but if you have pets or a lot of dust in your home, it may be necessary to change it more often.
  • Consider purchasing high efficiency pleated air filters. They trap more particles, keeping your system and the air in your home cleaner and healthier.
  • Keep your registers and ducts clear of dust and pet hair.
  • Check your thermostat settings. Consider installing a programmable stat if you don’t currently have one. A programmable stat saves energy while you are at work, on vacation, or otherwise away and returns the temperature to your desired comfort level just before you return home.
  • Turn the water supply on to the humidifier on your furnace. Change the humidifier pad and set your humidistat between 35 and 45%.
  • Shut down your air conditioner for the winter. Inspect it for damage and put a cover on it if you want one. Use only a cover made for an air conditioning unit, they are designed to allow the unit to breathe.
  • Replace the batteries in your carbon monoxide detector. While you are at it, it is a good idea to change the batteries in your smoke detectors as well.
  • Make an appointment today to have your furnace professionally cleaned and tuned up. It extends the life of your system and can keep small problems from turning into big problems!

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Basement Flooding – Protect Yourself

Will it ever stop raining this spring? With the official start of summer just a few days away, it still seems more like April than June. With all of this rainfall, you could start to see basement flooding, even more so if the gutters on your home are plugged or don’t route the water at least six feet away from your foundation. Water too close to your foundation can seep in through your basement walls. Just a few inches of water can cause a few hundred, even thousands of dollars in damage. Even if you don’t normally get water in your basement, this year’s relentless rainfall could make an impact.

So what can I do to protect myself?

Making sure you have a functioning sump pump in your basement could save you a lot of headache. A sump pump sits in a pit, usually a 18″ wide by 2′ deep hole with a gravel base installed in the lowest spot of your basement. Water flows to the pit through drains or by natural migration through soil. A float activator automatically turns on the electric pump. The pump moves water out of the pit and away from the foundation through pipes. A check valve keeps water from flowing back into the pit.

How often should I test the sump pump?

You should check the pump’s operation once a month or so in the spring or rainy season. Make sure the pump is plugged in and the GFCI switch is not tripped. The pump should be standing up straight so that the float doesn’t jam. Clean the grate on the bottom of the submersible pump and make sure the vent hole in the discharge pipe is clear. If you are not comfortable doing this, C&R Plumbing can do the maintenance for you. Pour  a bucket of water into the pit to make sure it starts. If it doesn’t, call for service.

What if there is a power failure?

A second sump pump, either water powered or battery powered, can serve as a back up in case of a power failure. This is a popular option to avoid basement flooding and for peace of mind.

Clogged Drains – How to Prevent Them

Keeping everything running smoothly can be a challenge with a busy family. Chances are you dash home from the office for a quick meal, then drop the kids at soccer practice while you hit the craft store for supplies your son needs for science class tomorrow. When life is this hectic, clogged drains could send you into a tailspin. To make life easier, we have put together some proactive tips.

Avoid clogs without investing much time or effort

  • Next time you stop by your favorite superstore, pick up a drain strainer for the shower. Be sure to use a paper towel to clear the drain, especially if anyone using your shower has long hair. Soap can gum up the pipes, too, so less is best!
  • Not all food scraps should go into the garbage disposal. For instance, egg shells may seem harmless, but the hard sharp edges of the broken pieces will collect other things coming down the drain and eventually cause a clog. It’s best to put your egg shells into the trash.
  • Flour thickens when you add it to water. Flour down your drain will stick to the sides of the pipes and catch other things coming down as well. It is wise to throw into the trash can also.
  • Coffee grounds will also build up in your pipes and cause blockage. They are one of the most common cause of drain problems. You should always dispose of coffee grounds in your trash can, or better yet use them for composting.
  • Pasta or rice will expand when it absorbs water, and can cause blockage. Pasta is also made of flour so it will stick to the pipes and collect other things.
  • Everyone has undoubtedly heard that feminine products clog pipes. Toilet paper is the paper that should go down the toilet. It is designed to break down in water. Paper towels, facial tissue, cotton balls, disposable diapers and other absorbent materials will hold water and cause blockage.
  • Products that claim to be flushable can clog your pipes. Cat litter, wipes, condoms, bandaids, and dental floss are all commonly flushed items that can cause problems.

What if I do get a clog?

If you do get a clog, try to plunge, don’t use harsh drain cleaners! Drain cleaning chemicals will corrode your plumbing and then you will have a bigger headache. Instead, flush them weekly with a half cup of baking soda and one cup of vinegar. Let it fizz in the drain for ten minutes, then pour in four cups of boiling water. And of course, call C&R if you need assistance. 

Follow these simple tips to avoid clogged drains and you will save yourself a lot of time and frustration.

Wipes Clog Pipes!

But aren’t they flushable?

Ironically, the very quality that makes wipes so attractive from a use standpoint is what causes problems in a sewer system – their ability to hold together when wet . Toilet paper is designed to biodegrade in water, but wipes are specifically designed to hold together.

Many wipes and similar products are labeled as “flushable.” While they may be flushable, they are not biodegradable. Wipes should be disposed of in a trash can.

The Macomb County Office of Public Works, in conjunction with your local municipal department of public works and the Great Lakes Water Authority, uses a variety of screens and filters on our systems.  This is an attempt to limit the damage these wipes can cause. Of course, no screening system is as good as catching the problem at the source. We need to eliminate the wipes from entering the system in the first place. Use the wipes – just be sure that they end up in the trash after use.