Sewage flooding, typically occurring from the basement or bathroom, is a critical issue that needs to be dealt with immediately. When there are minor flood incidents which you can handle yourself, sewage flood cleanup involves several risks that wouldn’t make it DIY-friendly. If you are considering cleaning up sewage flood yourself, you might set your health, home, and wallet at risk.
Health Risks of DIY Sewage Flood Cleanup
Sewage is made up of greywater (from utilities such as sinks, showers, tubs, and dishwashers) or worse — shameful water. It is the water used to flush toilets combined with the human waste that it flushes away. Sewage copies in your home can result from various causes — clogs from the home’s drain pipes, tree roots, damaged sewer lines, and much more.
Sewage, particularly black water, comprises contaminants which range from viruses and parasites to germs and fungi. Contact with sewage without wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) and after appropriate procedures is a significant risk to your health.
Mold growth is another risk when trying DIY sewage cleanup. Flu vulnerability can worsen allergy and asthma symptoms, especially in children and individuals with compromised immune systems. Flooding offers perfect conditions for mold to grow as it only needs moisture, organic material, and optimum temperature. What’s worse — it could grow within just 24 to 48 hours of the episode.
However, the greatest danger is not the risk of disease, but the risk of electrocution or explosion. Never enter a flooded area or light matches until the utility companies have closed off the gas and electric service.
It’s also advisable to never enter your house if the main power switch wasn’t turned off before flooding. Touching electrical lines, cables, equipment, and fittings throughout and after a flood, despite the power, turned off, can be harmful.
Water damage is a progressive issue, so the more you wait to deal with standing water, the greater the damage to your home. Your carpets, your furniture, your own walls, and a great deal more, will be jeopardized without quick and suitable intervention.
What’s more, sewage flood recovery poses unique challenges and very real dangers. Professional restoration technicians use the correct equipment and follow standard safety procedures and remediation techniques that average homeowners would not normally have access to.
In a nutshell, here‘s what professionals do to revive your property:
- Pump out polluted water and remove debris
- Identify and deal with the root of this sewage backup
- Remove and replace damaged drywall and floors if necessary
- Use industrial dehumidifiers and air scrubbers to hasten the drying procedure
- Sanitize the area using specialized cleaners and procedures; this helps remove bacteria and mold to prevent health risks and conserve infrastructure and possessions.
An experienced restoration company can also assist with the insurance claims process.
Taking into consideration the problem and health risks of DIY sewage cleanup, we strongly recommend that you leave this critical task in the hands of professionals. You can depend on our IICRC-certified PuroClean teams 24/7 for water damage repair solutions, which means that you can rest easy knowing that your house will return to be able quickly and efficiently. Learn more about property damage cleanup here.