Make backflow preventer at yard hydrant accessible?

Old 03-25-16, 05:55 PM
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Make backflow preventer at yard hydrant accessible?

I'm going to replace an existing yard hydrant with a Woodford Y34 frost free yard hydrant and a Wilkins 700XL dual check valve (backflow preventer - ASSE listed 1024). It's a non-testable device that has no shut-off valves or adjustments and is about four inches long.

A well driller had told me how he would install the valve that made it sound like it would be easily accessible if it ever needed to be serviced or replaced. That was a year ago and I don't remember the details of his idea.

I could tell he knew what he was doing, but maybe I misunderstood exactly what his intention was.

The valve needs to be at least 24" below grade. I want to minimize digging should the valve (or hydrant) need service.

¿The question: Typically, are these types of valves installed so they're easily accessible and if yes, how? Should I use a valve/meter box?

Thank you!
Old 03-26-16, 05:22 AM
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The first thing is that the yard hydrant's base is installed in a clean gravel/stone. When the hydrant is turned off the water in the vertical part of the faucet is drained out. The gravel bed gives that water somewhere to go.

As for the backflow preventer I wouldn't worry about it other than to take pictures or notes as to it's location. If it ever does fail... dig it up. Installing a box will just add cost and hassle for something that may never need servicing. And, if you installed a box you have to install the backflow preventer in such a way that it could be replaced while down in the bottom of that little hole which probably means union fittings which are an added expense and take up space... requiring a bigger access box...
Old 03-26-16, 08:07 AM
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The backflow preventer must be on the supply side of the hydrant since the hydrant must be able to drain down to the bottom, so that may be an access problem. Like Dane, the preventer would probably be the last item in maintenance of the system.
Old 03-28-16, 05:34 PM
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Thank you, Pilot Dane and chandler.

I have new information - info that supports my fuzzy memory of what I mentioned in my original post about a well driller somehow making the valve accessible.

The FAQ accompanying Ohio Administrative Code 3701-28-08 says:

"The backflow device has to be in an accessible vault that can be inspected if necessary. Digging it up is not considered accessible. The 1024 is not designed to be buried."

I post this response in case anyone working in Ohio or states with similar codes has at least a partial answer.

If someone can tell me this can be done without spending big bucks on a hydrant with an integral backflow preventer, I'd be grateful.

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