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Commercial Backflow Requirements
Frequently Asked Questions About Backflow Testing
If you have additional questions or need more information about backflow preventer testing, please contact the JEA Cross-Connection Control team at (904) 665-4410.
A backflow preventer is a device that allows water to flow from a utility supply line into your building, but never in the opposite direction. It is designed to prevent drinking water from being contaminated due to backflow, or introduction of various substances such as cleaning solutions, fertilizers or human waste into the public water supply.
Backflow preventers should be located within 10 feet of your JEA water meter. For fire sprinkler services, it should be near the point where the water service enters your property.
Backflow preventers are usually located outside commercial buildings or establishments. However, some backflow preventers are indoors, such as in dedicated fire service rooms. Qualified JEA backflow testers will know where to find them and understand backflow preventer requirements. You or your tester can also contact the JEA Cross-Connection Control Team at the number provided below for more information. If your commercial JEA water service does not use the required backflow preventer, one must be installed.
Properly installed and maintained backflow preventers protect our drinking water supply and help ensure all JEA customers have a reliable source of clean water. JEA and Florida law require water service customers maintain backflow preventers on their JEA water service lines. Annual testing is part of this maintenance requirement.
JEA sends emails and automated phone calls to each commercial customer with a backflow preventer(s) due for testing. JEA Qualified Vendors also may contact you to schedule testing. While you’re not required to hire any vendor that contacts you, the vendor you select must be a JEA Qualified Vendor.
All JEA commercial water services must have a backflow preventer. This includes, but is not limited to, potable water, irrigation, and fire services. Backflow preventers on commercial services must be tested annually, and immediately following an installation, repair or replacement.
Costs vary from vendor to vendor and generally differ based on the type, size and location of the backflow preventer. JEA recommends contacting multiple vendors to compare pricing and capabilities.
If your backflow preventer fails, it means that it is not operating properly and poses a potential threat to the community water system. The responsible party must ensure that the necessary repairs are completed as soon as possible. If it can’t be repaired, it must be replaced. Either way, it must be retested.
Under most circumstances, backflow preventers can be easily repaired. However, because they are mechanical devices with moving parts, more significant repairs may be needed. Complete replacement should be a rare occurrence. JEA recommends contacting multiple vendors for pricing and/or a second opinion if desired.
JEA Qualified Vendors must send backflow preventer test reports within 30 days. If you’re still getting notices, your backflow preventer may have not passed or the vendor may not have submitted the report promptly. JEA recommends contacting your vendor directly.
JEA may arrange for a backflow preventer to be tested, then add the testing cost to the customer’s utility bill . Customers who do not comply also may incur penalties or fines and may risk discontinuation of their utility services. JEA only uses these actions as a last resort to ensure the safety of the public water supply.
JEA is planning to offer this service to commercial customers in the near future. Check back soon for details on how you can sign up to have a JEA Qualified Vendor test your backflow prevention device(s). Until then, testing and maintenance remain the responsibility of the customer.
JEA considers the recipient of the monthly bill the responsible party. You may wish to contact the building owner/management company to determine the correct course of action.
The protection of the public water supply has always been one of JEA’s highest priorities. JEA has sent annual reminder letters to all commercial water customers for several years. We are also working to increase awareness through customer education programs.
Contact the JEA Cross-Connection Control Team at (904) 665-6250 or email email@example.com.
If your system requires repairs or replacement, one of JEA's qualified backflow testing vendors may offer these services. Please contact them for more information.
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