Tips for Recovering from Water Damage
Water damage is one of the most common types of disaster affecting homes and businesses. Causes of water damage vary largely and can range from everything from leaking or broken pipes to flooding, appliance malfunction, or even humidity. Water damage is especially damaging because it affects everything. Water can infiltrate virtually anything, and once materials, appliances, and other personal effects have been affected by water damage, it can be difficult to recover.
Water damage is not all the same; there are three main classifications of water damage to be aware of. While any form of water damage is a problem, the specific classification will determine some of the severity of the damage and the approach to cleaning and restoration. Here is a brief look at some of the classifications of water damage and tips on recovering.
Clean Water- this refers to water that is not contaminated and does not pose a health risk. This is the type of water damage that results from an overflowing sink or a leaking appliance.
Grey Water- the next classification is water that contains some levels of contaminants–either chemical, physical, or biological. This type of water damage can lead to illness is consumed or as a result of exposure. Toilets, washing machine, or dishwasher water damage can contain grey water.
Black Water- this is the most contaminated classification of water. This water refers to waste water highly contaminated from sewage, river or stream overflow, or seawater. High levels of bacteria and pathogens are present in this water and can lead to illness.
Water Damage Restoration
Each of these classifications of water can cause serious damage, but the restoration techniques for each are distinct. Understanding what class of water damage has occurred is important in addressing the problem safely and efficiently. Dealing with grey and black water requires a different approach and more specialized method of cleanup. You may need to contact the local fire department and environmental protection agency in addition to a qualified water damage restoration specialist.
No matter the exact cause, location, or classification of water causing damage, the most important thing to do is act fast. The longer water is allowed to remain in place, the more damage, some irrevocable, will occur. The sooner you can begin to address the affected area, the more likely it will be to completely recover. Having an emergency response plan in place to deal with something like water damage is a good way to be prepared to initiate a quick response.