Water Damage Health Risks: Learn the 3 Types
While water damage is a relatively common problem for homeowners, many of them understand the effects it can have on their property. As there are many sources of water damage like burst pipes, sewage backup, and others, there are also different types of water damage. One thing that is common among these types of water damage is they can pose certain health problems. And, as a homeowner, you must recognize each type of water damage to protect yourself from any danger.
Categories of Water Damage
There are three categories of water damage and each is categorized depending on the level of contaminants included in the water. The higher the category is the more dangerous the water damage can be.
Category 1 Or Clean Water
– One best example of category 1 or clean water is the water from the supply line. It is clean and does not contain contaminants which means it does not pose immediate danger to people.
Category 2 or Grey Water
– This type of water contains some level of contaminants and poses minor health risks to people.
Category 3 or Black Water
– This type of water damage is extremely contaminated. This water can pose serious health risks to those exposed to it.
The Danger of Water Damage Increases With Time
The longer the water sits and is left unattended, the higher the chances of it getting contaminated.
Clean water might not pose an immediate danger to those who are exposed to it, but if it is not attended to as soon as possible; it can get contaminated through mold and bacterial growth.
It might only take 24 hours for clean water to become greywater and it is similar to greywater. Grey water can increase its contaminants and become black water when left unattended for a longer time. At times, when the conditions and environment are severe, clean water can turn into black water at once, like if the area has old and musty boxes.
It is never precise how each category of water turns out to be, but what is certain is the danger of water damage increases when water damage is left unattended.
Water Damage Health Risks
Health risks associated with the kinds of water damage vary depending on the water involved. But you have to keep in mind that the environment of the affected area and time can worsen the situation and can cause more contaminants to grow.
Category 1: Clean Water Damage
In most cases, clean water damage is a result of a leaky water supply line or a burst pipe. The water is free from any microorganisms that can be harmful to humans. With that said, there can be a few to no health risks associated with clean water damage. But, it is still best to take precautions when dealing with clean water damage. Moreover, you must clean and remove clean water immediately before any contaminants start to grow.
Category 2: Grey Water Damage
The most common sources of greywater damage are the overflowing water from the toilet, sink, bathtub, and/or washing machine. This type of water damage can cause discomfort or illness when ingested or come in contact with. Some health risks associated with greywater damage are digestive disorders and gastrointestinal illnesses.
If you experience this type of water damage on your property, make sure to protect yourself with gloves, boots, goggles, and face masks in removing water. Moreover, you must thoroughly clean and sanitize the affected area to prevent developing health risks.
Category 3: Black Water Damage
Among the three types of water damage, Category 3 is the most hazardous kind of water damage. The contaminants included in black water damage are feces, sewage, and microorganisms. The most common sources of this type of water damage are sewage backup and flooding. Contaminants, microorganisms, toxins, and mold, can pose different kinds of allergic reactions when ingested and when exposed for a long time can result in more severe respiratory illnesses like difficulty breathing and infections.
Make sure to keep yourself away from this type of water damage, thus it is highly recommended that you allow a professional restoration contractor to handle the entire cleanup procedure. They have the proper tools and knowledge to remove any contaminants in your property.
The Importance of Quick Response and Restoration
Regardless of the source of the damage, you have to understand that water damage can pose a danger to your health and that it is categorized based on its level of contaminants. Even clean water damage can be hazardous to your health when left ignored. That is why it is important to respond quickly to all types of water damage. The longer you let water stand in your property the more likely you need a restoration professional. But if you are dealing with extensive water damage or the water contains contaminants, contact a trusted water damage professional. They will make sure to clean up and remove any health risks on your property.