How to Manage Black Water Damage

If you’ve recently experienced black water damage in your home, it’s important to first of all figure out what you’re dealing with. There are actually three different categories of water damage, each of which should be treated differently:

Category 1 is clean water damage. This type of damage occurs from safe, uncontaminated sources, such as clean tap water, and is easy to manage.

Category 2 refers to gray water damage, consisting of slightly contaminated water such as you would expect from a leaky dishwasher or washing machine.

Category 3, black water damage, means that the water is seriously contaminated, typically originating from floodwater or sewage backup. If you have an issue with black water damage, do not mop it up yourself – you’re going to need help from a professional water damage restoration company like Clarke Contractors. Here’s why:

What is Black Water Damage?

Black water can originate from a variety of different sources, but usually results from groundwater flooding or sewage waste. An overflowing toilet is a common source of black water. Because of the human waste content, especially fecal matter, the water is laced with harmful microbes.

If you’re dealing with the after effects of a flood, you need to bear in mind that the water will contain everything from the area, including sewage. For this reason, all floodwater is likely to be loaded with contamination, and as such, should be treated as black water.  

Other sources of black water can include laundry water if someone in the household is sick. Water left in a kitchen sink can also be classified as black water, since food remnants, grease, and oils provide the perfect breeding ground for bacteria.

Why is Black Water Dangerous?

Black water contains bacteria and viruses that can lead to disease and infection. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), exposure to Category 3 black water can lead to a variety of life-threatening diseases and illnesses, including gastrointestinal infections, respiratory infections, wound infections, rashes, and infectious hepatitis, to name just a few.

If not professionally treated withing 24 to 48 hours, black water can lead to mold growth, which can hide undetected behind walls, underneath floorboards and inside the smallest cracks and crevices. Inhaling mold spores can result in serious health problems that range from allergies to asthma.

It’s important to realize that any object that comes into contact with black water should also be regarded as dangerous. As previously stated, trying to clean up with ordinary household procedures will not resolve the problem – it’s time to call in a Professional Water Damage Restoration Company.

Who You Should Call

With the risk of irreversible property damage, along with the threat to the health of you and your family, the best solution is to call in a local reputable water damage restoration company. You need to call on the experts to make a full assessment of the damage by investigating all areas of the home that have been contaminated.

Clarke Contractors Inc. is an A+ BBB rated full-service damage restoration service provider with a complete line of restoration and mitigation services that include water damage restoration and mold removal. As the largest property damage restorers in the Cincinnati, Dayton and Tri-State area, Clarke Contractors has the experience and expertise to remove 100% of water, minimize further damage, reduce overall costs, and restore your home to its pre-flood condition.

Recognizing that, when dealing with black water, time is of the essence. Most water damage restoration companies will provide 24/7 emergency on-call service if needed.