What is a cross-connection?

Common Cross-Connections

Have you ever connected a garden sprayer to the end of a hose to fertilize your vegetables or flowers? Have you ever stuck the end of a garden hose into your car’s radiator or connected it to the heater hoses to flush the radiator? Or, have you ever placed the hose under the water’s surface in a swimming pool and left it on?

Many of us do. However, doing any of these poses a risk of contaminating your home’s drinking water with chemicals that can cause serious health concerns if swallowed.


Cross-Connection Definition

A cross-connection is:

  • Any existing or possible interconnection between a drinking water system and any other system that contains a substance of unknown or uncertain quality.
  • The link that can bring two systems together.


The most common cross-connection is an outside hose faucet, typically called a “hose bib” or “sillcock.” Use these plumbing fixtures for connecting hoses that you use for various purposes such as watering your gardens, flowers and lawns.


Show All Answers

1. What is a cross-connection?
2. What is cross-connection control and why is it important?
3. What is a cross-connection control program?
4. What is backflow and how is it prevented?
5. What is back-siphonage?
6. What is backpressure?
7. What is an “approved” backflow prevention method, assembly or device?
8. What is contamination?
9. What is pollution?
10. What is potable water?
11. What are examples of cross-connections around my home or business?
12. Where in my home or business are backflow prevention methods, assemblies or devices typically found or required?
13. Does my underground lawn sprinkler system require a backflow preventer?
14. What test is required and how is it conducted?
15. Who performs the test?
16. Is there anything else required with the test?
17. Where do I get the backflow prevention assembly test report form, and how and where do I send it?
18. Where do I find a certified backflow prevention device worker?
19. How much does the test cost, and who is responsible for payment?
20. Where can I find more information about cross-connection control and backflow prevention?