National Backflow Prevention Day – August 16: History, Facts & Quotes

In the realm of plumbing and public health, there are several essential dates that deserve recognition. One such day is National Backflow Prevention Day, observed on August 16th each year. This day serves as a reminder of the significance of preventing backflow in plumbing systems and the vital role it plays in safeguarding our water supply.

History of National Backflow Prevention Day

National Backflow Prevention Day is a relatively new holiday, first observed in 2021. It was created by Watts Water Technologies to commemorate the tragic backflow incident that occurred on August 16, 1933, at the Chicago World Fair.

In 1933, two popular hotels in Chicago shared a rooftop water supply. This was a common practice at the time, but it created a potential for cross-contamination. On August 16, a pump failure at one of the hotels caused the water to backflow into the other hotel’s water supply. This contaminated the water with amoebic dysentery, which sickened over 2,000 people and killed 98.

The Chicago World Fair backflow incident was a wake-up call for the water industry. It led to the development of new backflow prevention technologies and regulations. Today, backflow prevention devices are used in a variety of settings to protect drinking water supplies from contamination.

National Backflow Prevention Day is a time to remember the victims of the Chicago World Fair backflow incident and to celebrate the work of the professionals who ensure that our drinking water is safe. It is also a time to learn about backflow prevention and how to protect your own water supply.

How to Observe National Backflow Prevention Day

Observing National Backflow Prevention Day involves a combination of education and action. Homeowners and businesses can take steps to ensure the proper functioning of their plumbing systems. Regular maintenance, installation of backflow prevention devices, and understanding local plumbing codes are essential measures. Additionally, participating in community workshops and events organized by local plumbing associations can contribute to spreading awareness about the significance of preventing backflow.

Why National Backflow Prevention Day is Important

National Backflow Prevention Day holds immense importance due to its role in maintaining the safety of our water supply. Backflow incidents can lead to the contamination of drinking water with harmful substances and bacteria. By promoting awareness and education about backflow prevention, this day helps individuals and communities take proactive steps to safeguard their health and the environment.

National Backflow Prevention Day Quotes, Messages & Wishes

“Keep the water flowing clean and safe – Happy National Backflow Prevention Day!”

“A small effort today can prevent big water woes tomorrow. Happy National Backflow Prevention Day!”

“Protecting our water supply starts with preventing backflow. Stay informed, stay safe!”

“Let’s raise our glasses to clean water and effective plumbing systems on National Backflow Prevention Day!”

“Wishing you a day free from plumbing worries and full of backflow awareness. Happy National Backflow Prevention Day!”

5 Interesting Facts About Plumbing

  • The concept of indoor plumbing dates back to ancient civilizations like the Indus Valley and ancient Rome.
  • The flushing toilet was invented by Sir John Harington in 1596.
  • Copper piping has been used for plumbing since the ancient Egyptians, who laid copper pipes in their pyramids.
  • The word “plumber” comes from the Latin word “plumbum,” which means lead – a material once used for plumbing pipes.
  • The first fire sprinkler system was patented in 1872 by Philip W. Pratt.

National Backflow Prevention Day Dates

2023August 16Wednesday
2024August 16Friday
2025August 16Saturday
2026August 16Sunday
2027August 16Monday


What is backflow in plumbing?

Backflow occurs when the flow of water reverses, causing non-potable water to contaminate the clean water supply.

How can I prevent backflow in my home?

Regular plumbing maintenance, installation of backflow prevention devices, and following local plumbing codes are key preventive measures.

Why is backflow dangerous?

Backflow can introduce harmful substances and bacteria into the drinking water supply, posing health risks.

Are backflow prevention devices mandatory?

Requirements vary by location, but many areas require certain properties to have backflow prevention devices installed.

How can I raise awareness about backflow prevention?

Participating in community events, sharing educational resources, and engaging in discussions about plumbing safety can help raise awareness.


As we approach National Backflow Prevention Day on August 16th, let’s remember that a small effort today can prevent significant water contamination issues in the future. By staying informed about backflow prevention measures, maintaining plumbing systems, and spreading awareness, we contribute to the health and well-being of our communities. So, take the initiative to educate yourself and others, and celebrate this day by promoting clean water and efficient plumbing systems.

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