When your home, or parts of it is unexpectedly filled with water, it can come from a variety of different sources. Knowing what type of water is pumping onto your floors can make a big difference in how the water should be cleaned up, and what steps need to be taken in order to insure your home is safe.
Before you start clearing out the water flooding from your home, read on…
Category 1 Water
While all water flowing into your home is potentially damaging, category 1 water damage is water of the least concern. Category 1 water damage comes from clean water sources. Example of clean water sources could be something like a broken water pipe, the water heater, or anywhere else clean, treated water could be leaking from. This even includes water from the toilet tank, but not necessarily the toilet bowl.
Clean, treated water is different from other categories because there is no danger of bacteria from these clean, treated sources.
Category 2 Water
Category 2 water includes water that may or may not have dangerous bacteria in it. If you’re familiar with the term “Grey water” this would be category 2 water. Water from laundry machines, the toilet bowl (possibly including urine, but never feces), used dish water, and similar sources. Category 2 water is more dangerous than category 1 water. This type of H2O will indeed require a water damage restoration expert. Category 2 water damage needs to be cleaned carefully in order to be safe, but it doesn’t hold the same dangers as our last category.
Category 3 Water
This is the most dangerous type of water, and should never be attempted to clean up without professional help. Category 3 water includes any water with feces in it, either from animals or people. This includes flood water, sewage pipes, and water from the toilet bowl with feces in it. River water, or water from any kind of natural flooding is always considered category 3, since you don’t know what sort of water is rushing through your home, or what kind of diseases are being carried along by it.
This water is very dangerous. Water from category 3 sources is crawling with potentially deadly diseases. A professional is needed not just to prevent ordinary water damage, but also to protect your family from the diseases and potential mold spores carried in by this water.
All three categories have their challenges. Category 1 and 2 flooding can easily move to a more dangerous category in certain situations, such as if contaminated water enters the already flooded area.
If you’re not sure what kind of water is flooding your home, you should always have a professional come help you clean up. If bacteria or mold spores are left behind after a home clean up, you could inadvertently cause your family or yourself to become sick through contaminated surfaces being left behind.
Some types of bacteria and virus are extremely stubborn, and even what appears to be a thorough cleaning job can leave behind bacteria. Professionals can help avoid this, as well as making sure the area is dried completely.