Storm Preparation & Recovery

Palm tree blowing in an approaching storm

Understanding your water and wastewater systems will help you adapt to a storm.

Download Hurricane Preparedness information

Low-pressure wastewater disposal system

In order to protect your system, and to help prevent your house plumbing lines from clogging, please only flush toilet paper and human waste.

When the tank is full, a float system will activate the electrical pump and the wastewater will be pumped through low-pressure sewer mains to one of the City’s wastewater treatment plants.

The system is equipped with an alarm system that is generally located in the garage or on the outside of the home on the control panel box. The warning light and an audible alarm should activate as soon as the water level rises above the normal level.

When you hear an alarm, or your neighbor is not home and you hear theirs, you can silence the audio portion of the alarm by pressing the red light button located at the front center of the control panel box. You should then call (772) 873-6400 for service. We will assist you any time 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

You may also have a problem if you notice your toilets are sluggish when flushed and water drains slower than normal. You should make every attempt to conserve water until your service call is answered.

Bathroom interior showing toilet paper roll holder and toilet



Employee pumping down a residential grinder tank



Limit Water Use During a Power Outage

If the electrical power is off, the system cannot operate. Therefore, all grinder and STEP system customers must conserve water usage until their electric power is restored.

A toilet typically uses between 1.5 and 2.5 gallons of water per flush; therefore, customers should flush toilets only when absolutely necessary. You should also avoid taking long showers, using dishwashers and washing machines, and running the water unnecessarily, as this will quickly fill up your tank.

The Utility Systems Department will make every effort possible to pump out or pump down a customer’s grinder or STEP system during the recovery period after a storm or hurricane.

Water spraying from bathroom shower head



Using a Generator with your System

Customers may use a portable generator to power their residential grinder system during an outage. However, customers must consult with a licensed electrician to install the appropriate equipment to enable the feed to go through the home’s electrical panel (for example: a generator port, transfer switch, interlock, etc.).

Connecting a portable generator directly to the grinder system’s control panel is prohibited. A personal generator must be a minimum of 220 Volt / 6,500 Watts.


Residential electrical panel



Your Water Service

Instead of purchasing cases and gallon jugs of water to keep with your supplies, fill up containers with your tap water. Our water is treated by reverse osmosis and purified with minerals, like many bottled waters on the market.

Our water plants operate and push water out to your home at 70 to 82 psi. If distribution pressure drops below 20 psi during a storm, a boil water notice is issued. Because of our preparations prior to storms, we have not had to issue one. However, in the event we do, our water customers will be notified.

Water flowing from kitchen sink faucet