JEA will be conducting testing of the sanitary sewer lines in the San Jose area beginning Monday. This testing is used to identify areas within the JEA sanitary sewer system that may be allowing unwanted infiltration of water, usually from rain or irrigation, into the system.
By identifying these areas, JEA is able to reduce the amount of water we are required to treat at our reclamation facilities, thereby reducing operating costs. In the process, JEA is also able to sometimes identify private plumbing issues with individual homes and businesses.
JEA uses a special machine designed to blow white, harmless, non-toxic smoke into the sanitary sewer system through sewer manholes. The smoke then travels through the sewer system and escapes by rising through openings in the system. These openings can include JEA pipes that need fixing, sewer clean-outs without caps, roof vent stacks and private plumbing. The rising smoke will alert our testing teams to potential problems which they will promptly investigate.
Customers will be notified by JEA should any plumbing issues be discovered on private property.
Smoke will not appear in customers’ homes or businesses unless there are dry fixtures or issues related to their private sewer systems. JEA recommends that customers run water through all sinks, toilets and other plumbing fixtures to make sure they have water in them or in the traps prior to testing. Simply pour water into the drain of any unused or dry fixture to fill the bowl or trap. This will prevent the smoke from entering the home and force the smoke to exit through the rooftop vent.
Should the smoke enter into the home or business, open a window or door and the smoke will naturally dissipate. The smoke used for this work is very similar to condensed air and is not harmful to people or pets.
JEA crews working in the neighborhood will be handing out informational door hangers to customers in the areas being tested 24-48 hours prior work in the immediate area.