If you and your family are fortunate enough to have never experienced a sewage backup in your Virginia home… Yes, a sewage backup is exactly as awful it sounds. Some signs of a sewage leak can be very obvious, like odors and visible moisture. Others, can be easily missed. When it comes to sewage backups, early detection and quick response is key.
Unaddressed sewage problems can lead to water damage and mold growth.
Risks Posed By Sewage Backup
Sewage backups can leave you and your family with a multitude of problems. Fixing the problem can be costly and time-consuming. The presence of sewage is hazardous and can make you and your family sick. Unaddressed moisture will lead to serious property damage.
Sewage-contaminated water usually contains a variety of bacteria, viruses, and germs that can be hazardous to humans. If you do not take the necessary safety precautions around sewage, you can be putting yourself and your family at risk.
Sewage and sewage water can leave you with serious and costly property damage if it’s not properly cleaned up in a timely manner. Porous building materials may be non-salvageable after contamination. If the property is not properly dried out, you may be left with serious structural concerns as well.
If the water level has reached any plugs, electrical outlets, extension cords, or gas-burning equipment, do not touch anything! Get out of the building immediately and call the professionals as the risk of a fire is enormous.
If all your electrical equipment as well as the distribution panel is still safely above water, switch off the power as soon as you detect the problem.
What To Do After A Sewage Backup
When faced with a sewage backup, the best course of action is to contact a professional sewage cleanup company in Virginia. It can be dangerous to attempt cleanup on your own. Furthermore, an improper or insufficient cleanup can leave you with hidden moisture problems. However, here are some steps you can take while you wait for arrival of the professionals.
- Evacuate the flooded area. Keep children away from the affected area. Keep in mind that sewage contaminants can be hazardous to pets as well.
- If it is safe to do so, turn off electrical power to the flooded area. If you cannot safely turn off the power, do not go near electrical devices.
- Stop use of the water supply system. Do not flush toilets or attempt to drain tubs and sinks – shut off the water valve for the main water line until the problem has been detected and taken care of.
- Do NOT attempt to use harsh chemicals to unclog the drainage system quickly and easily. Harsh chemicals can damage your pipes and sewer lines, leaving you with even more problems.
- Wear protective clothing and use protective equipment: gloves, goggles, rubber boots, face-masks, etc.
- Open windows to allow fresh air in and ventilate the affected space.
- Add small amounts of chlorine bleach to standing water for some disinfection
- Notify your municipal authority or sewer department if your home is connected to a public sewer.
- Notify your insurance company about the backup. Keep in mind that the sewage backup may not be covered under your insurance policy. An insurance agent will be able to provide you with more insight on what is covered under your specific policy.
- Contact a professional cleanup company that will be able to safely and effectively handle the sewage cleanup and restore your property and peace of mind.
Remember that sewage backups should be dealt with as quickly as possible to prevent further, more costly damage. A professional Virginia Water Restoration Company will have the adequate equipment and experience required for a quick and efficient intervention. Improper or insufficient cleanup can leave you with future problems. If the affected area does not undergo a thorough cleaning and dry-out, there could be moisture left behind within your porous building materials or hidden within wall voids and underneath flooring. Addressed moisture can lead to property damage and potential mold development.
If you suspect mold development in the aftermath of a sewage leak, you should consider getting a professional mold inspection in VA. It only takes 24-48 hours for mold to develop in the presence of moisture. Following a sewage cleanup, you should monitor the affected areas for signs of indoor mold development. Like sewage backups and leaks, mold should be addressed right away, or it will only worsen with time.