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Water Use Restrictions

Restriction Change

Board action by the Southwest Florida Water Management District on February 25, 2014 returned Tampa and the surrounding 3-county area return to twice-weekly irrigation allowances starting March 1, 2014.  When twice-weekly irrigation restrictions are in place, Tampa locations should follow year-round water use allowances, which include the following schedule for irrigation at homes and businesses:

  • At addresses ending in 0, 1, 2 or 3 - Mondays and/or Thursdays

  • At addresses ending in 4, 5 or 6 - Tuesdays and/or Fridays

  • At addresses ending in 7, 8 or 9 - Wednesdays and/or Saturdays

  • At locations with no address (common areas, entry areas), and locations with mixed addresses (office complexes, shopping centers) -  Wednesdays and/or Saturdays

Irrigation may be done on your permitted days between midnight and 8 a.m. or between 6 p.m. and midnight. Reclaimed water users are not affected by the restrictions.

Tampa remains under a Phase II Water Shortage Order (WSO) and water users are encouraged to irrigate only as needed. During this period, these additional restrictions also are placed on outdoor water use:

  • Reduce recreational water use to the maximum extent practical. Use of sprinklers and sprinkler-like devices used for recreation purposes is limited to days/times allowed for irrigation.

  • Wading pools, water slides and other similar child-oriented water recreation devices should discharge or drain on lawn or landscape areas requiring irrigation.

  • No person or entity shall enforce any deed restrictions or other community standards that contribute to increased outdoor water use, including suspension of requirements to replace plant materia to meet aesthetic standards. [Questions regarding this portion of existing WSO should be referred to Southwest Florida Water Management District at 813-985-7481.]

Customers are advised to review the information provided below about avenues available to receive and monitor irrigation restriction changes. Restrictions are subject to change at any time in response to water supply conditions. 

View Water Shortage Order

The Tampa Water Department publishes updates and changes to local water restrictions in these ways: media releases, Twitter Facebook, RSS feeds, informational Alert Tampa emails, "The Pipeline" electronic newsletter, email blasts to registered Neighborhood Association contacts, and utility customer billing inserts.  Water use restrictions are in place year-round to help ensure a sufficient quantity of drinking water for the Tampa community. Violating water use restrictions in Tampa may result in penalties ranging from $100 to $450 and a mandatory court appearance. Restrictions are subject to change in response to local and regional water supply conditions.

Using water efficiently can help you manage your utility costs. Tampa's Schedule of Rates includes a multi-tier rate structure where the price of each billing unit of water increases as the quantity of water used in a billing cycle increases. This means that using more water will result in a higher utility bill due to the increased tier charges.

Water use restrictions for customers located outside Tampa city limits are enforced by Hillsborough County Code Enforcement. Call Hillsborough County at (813) 245-7094 or 274-6600 for more information.

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Not sure if your address is inside or outside Tampa city limits? Enter your address to find your watering day using My Tampa Address.  

 

 

 

Year-Round Watering Days Inside Tampa City Limits: 

 

  Note:  The Year-Round Watering Days shown in this table will not be in effect between Dec. 26, 2013 and Feb. 28, 2014.

  • At addresses ending in 0, 1, 2  or 3 - Mondays and/or Thursdays;

  • At addresses ending in 4, 5 or 6 - Tuesdays and/or Fridays;

  • At addresses ending in 7, 8 or 9 - Wednesdays and/or Saturdays;

  • At locations with no address (common areas, entry areas), and locations with mixed addresses (office complexes, shopping centers) -  Wednesdays and/or Saturdays.

 

This is only a summary of the restrictions in place under Tampa Code Sec. 26-97, and Chapter 40D-22, F.A.C.  For complete information on restrictions in effect refer to the source documents.

 

  • Printable Summary of Year-Round Water Use Restrictions, (PDF, 65K)

     

    Water use for all water sources, except reclaimed water, (including but not limited to: public, private, well, pond, lake, and harvested rainwater) inside the Tampa city limits is restricted year-round under Tampa Code Sec. 26-97 and Chapter 40D-22, F.A.C.

     

    Restrictions are in place for water uses including (but not limited to) irrigation of new and established landscapes, low-volume micro-irrigation, hand watering, irrigation system maintenance, and chemical treatments.

     

    Irrigation of established lawns (turfgrass) and landscaping (non-turf) is allowed up to TWICE PER WEEK, on assigned days. All irrigation must be accomplished between 12:01 a.m. and 8 a.m. OR between 6 p.m. and 11:59 p.m. on the allowed day.   Any one zone of a property may only be watered once during an allowable day, NOT both in the morning and again in the evening. These restrictions apply to all water sources, except reclaimed water, although reclaimed water customers are encouraged to use only what they need.

     

    Watering of landscapes using an in-ground irrigation system (rotor and spray sprinkler heads) or a hose equipped with a portable sprinkler is limited to the same twice-per-week schedule. The same lawn area may not be watered by multiple means, such as using an irrigation system and a hand-held hose to water the same area twice on the same day.

     

    Allowed Hours:

    All irrigation must be accomplished between midnight and 8 a.m. OR between 6 p.m. and midnight on the allowed day. Any one zone of a property may only be watered once during an allowable day, NOT both in the morning and again in the evening. No irrigation is permitted between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. on any day.

     

    Hand-watering:

    Hand-watering and micro-irrigation of flower beds, shrubs and other plants (other than lawn) may be done on any day, during any hours. Remember to use an automatic shutoff nozzle when using a garden hose.

     

    Irrigation of New Lawns and Landscaping:

    Follow these rules for watering new lawns (including sod, seed, plugs, etc.) and all landscaping. Note: All irrigation must be accomplished between midnight and 8 a.m. OR between 6 p.m. and midnight on the allowed days.

    All new plant material (including turfgrass) -- the establishment period is limited to 60 calendar days.

    • On days 1-30, beginning the day of installation, you may water any day of the week. On the day the plant material is installed, this extra watering can occur only ONCE during otherwise restricted hours.

    • On days 31-60, even-numbered addresses may water on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays; odd-numbered addresses and those locations with no address (medians, rights of way, and common areas) may water on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays.

    • Following this period, all plant material is considered established, and must follow the restrictions for established landscapes.

     

    Sprinkler System or Hand Water? - New plant material must cover at least 50 percent of an irrigation zone in order to water with an in-ground sprinkler system during the initial establishment period. If not, the new plant material must be hand watered. (Example: If you purchased one flat of grass plugs to place throughout your front yard to fill in bare spots, this would not cover 50 percent of an irrigation zone. Hand watering would be required.) Even if you water by hand, you must follow the same guidelines for new lawn establishment.


    Also, only those zones containing 50 percent new plant material may be watered, not the entire yard. (Example: If you had your entire front yard re-sodded, but not your backyard, only those zones covering the front yard could be run during the establishment period. The backyard zones would have to remain on the regular watering schedule.) Most irrigation timers have an A and B program. Program A can be set for the regular watering. Program B can be programmed for multiple days to only water those zones containing the new plant material during the establishment period. After the establishment period has ended, be certain to clear all information from Program B, as these irrigation controllers are notorious for resetting after a power outage or spike and running all programs at the same time, even if Program B is turned off.
     

    Use hand watering or micro-irrigation technology to meet the needs of potted plants, flower beds, shrubs, or specimen trees if they will require more than twice-per-week watering after the first 60 days.

     

     

     

     

     


     

     

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    (page last reviewed: 07/31/13)