Sewage Backup Cleanup: Top 5 Restoration Companies in the Toronto Area
What to EXPECT After a Sewage Backup?
Sewage backup is something that no one ever wants to find in their home. The horrible smell will usually be what alerts you of your newfound problem. Although this is a huge inconvenience and may damage some parts of your home, there are more important things to worry about, your health. A black water leak poses a major threat to your health if the situation is not overseen correctly. A threat that you will want to avoid until you are able to acquire the proper safety equipment.
Sewage Water Cleanup Remediation – First Steps
The very first thing that you will need to do is minimize the health risks for everyone involved. That means that everyone will need to evacuate the premises immediately, especially the elderly, any children, sick individuals, and anyone suffering from breathing issues. They should stay a safe distance from the affected areas or leave the home until the issue has been completely resolved.
Depending on the severity of the problem, you may need to call the utility companies. Sewage getting into your furnace can cause much bigger problems by spreading the bacteria throughout your home. If the sewage encounters any electrical cords, outlets, wiring, or breakers it can cause serious issues. Locate your breaker panel, if it is in a safe accessible location, turn the main power off. Inspect the affected areas with proper protective equipment to assure that no electrical components have been affected before turning your power back on. If there is any concern that electrical components have been affected, contact a professional to assess the situation before turning the power back on.
If you have gas appliances that must be turned off, contact the gas company and have them temporarily shut off your gas until your appliances have been deemed safe to turn back on.
If it is in a safe and accessible location, turn your main water supply off. If you cannot safely do so, or if you do not know where it is, you can call the water damage company and have them shut off your water temporarily. This will help ensure that you do not use water for anything in the house. Using water in a sink or flushing a toilet will only worsen the already present problem.
You will want to go through your home and open all the windows and doors to help the odor ventilate out of your home. Do not use your HVAC system to cycle the air, this will only spread the contaminants and make your problem much worse. If there are any items in the vicinity of the sewage that have not been affected, you can move them to a safe location to help avoid contamination.
Before entering the area, you will want to make sure that you are properly protected. Rubber boots, rubber gloves, eye protection, and an EPA rated mask should be the minimum. While in the area, you can pour small amounts of bleach onto the pools of standing sewage. This will function as a first line of defense against any bacteria that is growing.
Never attempt to clear your drains after a sewage backup, wait until a professional can do it for you. Attempting it yourself may only make the issue worse and put your health at risk. A professional plumber will need to address the issue once the area has been thoroughly cleaned and made accessible.
Contact your insurance provider to find out if you have a policy that includes sewage back up, and if it does not, then what your policy covers as far as water damage. Contact a restoration company that specializes in these types of damages and repairs. A company like GTA Restoration has 24/7 emergency calls and has all the newest up-to-date equipment to help restore your home to before accident quality.
The Cause of Sewer Backup & How to Prevent it!
What could have caused this disaster? There are many possibilities such as tree roots, a septic tank issue, collapsed sewer pipe, and more. Getting your pipes and valves inspected at regular intervals will help ensure that you will not have issues like this in the future. Make sure that you complete any repairs that are recommended and follow their recommendations on how to maintain your system.
A few examples of what not to do are do not use commercial chemicals to clear the clogged drain, and avoid dumping excessive amounts of any other kind of chemical down your drains. Do not flush anything other than toilet paper down your drains. Do not pour kitchen grease down your drains, this can build up on the inside of your drainpipes and cause severe issues. Try and avoid planting any trees or bushes near your sewage lines to help keep any roots from growing into them in the future.
Black Water Clean Up & Remediation
The problem is a manageable size, and you are confident in your cleaning abilities. It is always advised to let professionals handle sewage clean up, but if you choose to attempt the cleanup yourself, here are some things that you will need to know.
Large messes will certainly need to be addressed by a professional. You may want to save money and clean up a big issue yourself. But large sewage backup problems need to be managed quickly, and effectively, by professionals. The health concerns of a large backup are extreme and require extensive cleaning. Which is best done by professionals, who will make sure that your family stays safe and healthy.
Make sure that if you are doing any cleaning that you are wearing the proper protective equipment. You will need rubber boots, rubber gloves, wrap around goggles, and an EPA approved mask at least. Sewage contains a lot of bacteria that can make you extremely sick if you are not careful. Also, be sure to clean yourself properly after every exposure.
Remove the sewage as soon as possible. This can be done with a sump pump, a shovel, or a wet vac. Use a shovel to put any large debris into a bag that can be sealed and dispose of it immediately.
Take anything from the area that has had little to no exposure that can easily be sanitized to a clean area with a concrete floor until the problem is resolved. Any cloth, carpet, trim, paneling, or insulation that has been touched by the sewage will need to be taken out of the home and disposed of.
Wash everything down, including the walls, with warm water mixed with the proper disinfectants. Follow up with warm soapy water for a second wash. Scrub your floors with a mild bleach water mixture. Remember to wear all your protective gear while doing this.
Remove all the excess water possible and allow the area to dry. If it is warm outside, you can open your doors and windows to help. You may need to use fans and dehumidifiers to help, because the area must be dry within 48 hours to avoid mold growth.
Inspect your property for mold. The excessive amount of moisture can inhibit mold growth in your home, even in places that were never contacted by the water. If any mold is found, be sure to wear all your protective equipment, especially a mask, and use an EPA approved mold cleaner to clean the mold. If the mold damage is extensive, you should have a professional mold remediation expert, such as GTA Restoration manage the issue.
Have anything with sentimental or monetary value that you do not want thrown away inspected by a professional. Some things may be able to be cleaned and sanitized by a professional company, so you do not have to throw them away. Other things may not be salvageable and will have to be disposed of. Any food items, heavily exposed linens, or porous items such as rugs, mattresses, stuffed animals, or curtains should be disposed of quickly and properly.
What if You Are Exposed to the Sewage Contamination?
Cleaning sewage spills has some serious health risks and is not normally advised to do yourself. It is always better to call in the professionals so they can clean up the mess without you ever risking your wellbeing. If you do clean up the sewage backup mess yourself then here are a few ways to protect yourself.
Every time you take a break or once you are finished, you should thoroughly clean your hands with antibacterial soap. Make sure to scrub every part of your hands, in between your fingers, under your fingernails, up your forearms, and anywhere else that may encounter the debris.
Do not ever touch your face, ears, mouth, or nose while cleaning. Sewage can contain all kinds of bacteria that can cause you to get extremely sick. Touching your face with sewage on your hands is an invitation to get sick.
Place all your exposed clothing and protective gear in sealed bags and store away from any clean items. It is especially important that you do not mix your dirty items with clean items.
If you become injured during clean up, then you will need to clean the wound immediately and extensively. If you have not had your proper vaccinations and depending on the extent of the wound, you will want to call and consult with your doctor as soon as possible. The same should be done if you start feeling unwell for any reason during the cleanup process.
When to call the Professionals
When is it time to call the professionals? In a sewage backup situation, it is best to call a professional from the beginning. If you have flooring that the sewage has gotten under, if the sewage begins to spread to other rooms of your home, if you have any compromised equipment such as furnaces or refrigerators, or if there has been an excessive amount of time that the sewage has been sitting, it is imperative that you call a restoration company immediately. Call GTA Restoration. They have a 24/7 emergency call line and are experts in their field. They will get your sewage cleaned up, the damage repaired, and you back to normal.
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