Residential Backflow Requirements


Since 1990, the Florida Building Code has required that residential irrigation systems have a backflow preventer. The state requires that homeowners have their backflow preventers tested every two years by a certified backflow tester, and that water utilities submit annual reports on the compliance status of their customers.


For Customers with Irrigation Meters 

JEA's Backflow Preventer Checkup Program

The Backflow Preventer Checkup program helps customers with JEA Residential Irrigation Service comply with state environmental regulations set in place by coordinating the testing for you.
Learn about the Backflow Preventer Checkup Program now

Irrigation Systems not using an Irrigation Meter

If your in-ground irrigation system uses your normal JEA water service or an auxiliary water source, but not an irrigation meter, you are still required to have a backflow preventer installed on your system. Each water source presents a different level of risk to the public water supply and has corresponding backflow preventer requirements (see table below). 

Reclaimed Water for Irrigation

JEA customers who use reclaimed water for irrigation are also required to have a backflow preventer installed to protect the public drinking water from potential contamination. In addition, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection requires JEA to conduct periodic inspections of residential reclaimed water systems to protect the public drinking water supply from contamination. 

JEA will arrange for periodic testing of these residential backflow preventers as required by state rules. The inspector will leave information about this process on the homeowner’s door upon completion of the test. Customers with backflow preventers that fail the test will be notified by JEA, and will be responsible for repairing and retesting their backflow preventers.

If your system requires repairs or replacement, contact one of JEA's qualified backflow prevention testing vendors for an estimate.

In-ground Irrigation Water Source Backflow Preventer Required Backflow Preventer Installation
Residential Water Service Double Check or Reduced Pressure*  Residential Water Service line or before irrigation system
Residential Irrigation Service (Irrigation Meter) Double Check or Reduced Pressure*  Residential Irrigation Service line
Residential Reclaimed Water Service Double Check or Reduced Pressure*   Residential Water Service line  
Surface Water (well, pond, other non-potable) Reduced Pressure  Residential Water Service line  

*DCVA is allowed if the irrigation service was installed prior to May 2014. Irrigation services installed after May 2014 require reduced pressure backflow preventers.

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.

Accordion Item
Closed Title:What do I need to do to have JEA test my backflow preventer device?
Open Text:

Nothing. JEA will automatically send a backflow preventer contractor to test your device and the $35 fee will be
added to your JEA bill within one to two months following testing. The tester should arrive approximately 30-45
days from the date of this letter.

Accordion Item
Closed Title:How will I receive my backflow results?
Open Text:

Upon completion of the test, the contractor will leave a door hanger indicating whether your device passed the test.
If your backflow preventer does not pass, you will have 30 days in which to have it repaired and retested.

Accordion Item
Closed Title:Can I hire my own contractor to perform the test?
Open Text:

Yes. If you choose to hire your own certified backflow preventer contractor, you will have 45 days from the date of
this notice in which to get the device tested and submit the results. If after 45 days JEA has not received a copy of
your test results, we will send a tester to your home to complete the testing so that we may report the results to DEP
as required by law. The $35 fee for the test will be added to your JEA utility bill.

Accordion Item
Closed Title:What if my backflow preventer needs repairs?
Open Text:

Your tester will provide instructions on what repairs (if any) are needed in order for your backflow preventer to be
in compliance.

You may select a company from JEA’s preferred vendor list available at
or hire a vendor of your choosing at a price negotiated between you and the vendor.

Costs for repairs are the responsibility of the homeowner. Following the repairs, a backflow vendor must re-test the device and submit the
results to JEA.

Homeowners who choose to make their own repairs must still hire a backflow contractor to re-test
the device at a cost agreed upon between the homeowner and vendor. Once JEA receives the passing test report, the
device will be in compliance.

Accordion Item
Closed Title:How often does a backflow preventer need to be tested?
Open Text:

Residential backflow preventers must be tested every two years to ensure they are functioning properly.

Accordion Item
Closed Title:Why does my backflow preventer need to be tested?
Open Text:

Like most mechanical devices, backflow preventers contain parts that may wear out or corrode over time. The
Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) therefore requires that homeowners have their backflow preventers
tested every two years to ensure they remain in good working order. The state also requires JEA to submit annual
reports on their customers’ compliance with this requirement.


For more information about our Commercial Backflow Prevention program, click here

Explore Solutions and Save

Learn about all the ways JEA helps Northeast Florida families, businesses and our community thrive and how we can help you do more.

Get Started at