Fouled sewer lines can release sewage; a thick, dark substance that forms. Sewage water is a dangerous health hazard and unsanitary; containing contaminants like pathogens, viruses and bacteria. These dangerous contaminants may present risks of serious sickness if animals or humans suffer exposure. Quick repair is key if you have sewage backup anywhere in your home or business . Quickly repairing this will prevent the hazardous waste water from lingering in occupied areas. To stop a hazardous condition occurring in your home or business, being aware of what leads to the sewer incidents could be beneficial. We’ve created a list of items to aid in preventing and dealing with home or business sewage blockages:

Sewage Backup Causes

  • Considerable Rainfall – Excess flooding can overpower your town or city’s storm sewer system. If this happens, the waste can expand into the attached sewer lines putting your home or business in possible risk of water backflow. Increasing rivers and streams, hurricanes and other relevant events can force flood and sewage waters to blend and present serious health related problems. You should be extremely cautious when wading in this type of water, and even stay cautious after the water recedes and dries up. It’s viable for the organic matter to turn aerosolized and respirable, meaning there’s a chance you could inhale it into your lungs. To stop contact or risk of inhaling these contaminants, appropriate PPE should be used at all times.
  • Tree Roots – Trees can have strong roots that grow into water or sewer pipes and crush or break them. Damage to pipes and a sewer backup can also be caused by tree roots that aren’t even on your land. Be acutely aware of any tree roots that can sprawl into your water and sewer pipes that lead to the main sewer line or septic system.
  • Old/Aging Sewer Pipes – Older and aging sewage structures are susceptible to crumbling and cracking, inducing sewer backups, flooded basements as well as entire home flooding. The older your area or house may raise the chance of this type of catastrophe occurring.
  • Clogged and Blocked Drain Pipes – If your home or business’s main sewer line or drain pipes become blocked, sewage may back up inside the building. A good example is: if a single commode causes a sewage blockage, the drains connected to that toilet, or the main drain pipes of more toilets, will also suffer backflow flooding.
  • Old and/or Damaged Lines – Aging sewage systems have a propensity to fail and crumble, leading to sewer water influx and flooded dwellings full of sewage. If your home or area is older, the probability is greater that you’ll experience failing sewer lines than newer ones.
  • Copious Rainfall – Heavy and rapid downpours can overwhelm your local storm sewer lines promptly. If these public sewer pipes can’t deal with excess rainfall, water can backup and progress into connected sewer lines. This can put your home or business at risk of backflow problems. Regional flood waters from events like rising rivers and creeks, hurricanes, or any other weather events can cause clean water to merge with sewage water and other chemicals and harmful toxins that cause serious health ailments. Use extreme carefulness when wading in this type of waste, but also stay cautious when it dries. The dried organic material can turn airborne and turn respirable. Proper PPE needs to be utilized at all times to prevent contact and risk inhaling polluted air.
  • Blocked/Clogged Sewer Lines – A clogged pipe or sewer line can force sewage to back up into your home or business. If only one commode becomes backed up, the sewer water backup can spread on to the sewer pipes and disturb all linked toilets on that line.
  • Roots from Trees – Tree roots can be harmful to water and sewer pipes. The roots from big trees can make their way into and around the pipes and damage them excessively. If the roots on your property are not the problem, roots from nearby trees can grow under property lines and ruin your sewer line, causing a sewage issue. Be extra aware of all tree roots near your mainline sewer pipes and/or pipes leading to your septic tank.

PuroClean’s process for sewage cleanup and sanitation in Birmingham, AL

Our methods for Category 3 water (also known as sewer and contaminated water backup) cleanup, following the IICRC industry standards, consists of:

1. To protect the safety of all occupants and workers by limiting jobsite access to restoration and cleanup personnel only to help stave off any health related situations.

2. Assessment of the jobsite and Health and Safety surveys.

3. Ensure all remediation personnel are equipped with the proper personal protection equipment (PPE). This may include but is not limited to:

  • Full face respirator
  • Nitrile and cut resistant gloves
  • Rubber boots with steel toes and shank
  • Entire body suit protection

4. Engineering controls put in place and condemnatory barricades used (if needed) stopping cross-contamination.

5. Eliminating any and all lingering safety risks if possible.

6. Clearing the site of all bulk water, soil, and contaminates.

7. Remove and dispose of all contaminated porous and semi-porous materials that are not able to be restored, which could include but is not limited to:

  • Carpet, rugs, pad, or underlayment
  • Gypsum board (Drywall)
  • Hardwood flooring
  • Vinyl flooring and underlayment
  • Padded and upholstered items

8. Implement cleaning methods and use of EPA approved biocides and antimicrobials

9. Physical cleaning of all remaining structure material

10. A clearance inspection by a third-party Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH) is recommended to ensure the building is returned to a pre-affected condition for health and safety.

11. All materials affected by water to be dried and returned to pre-loss standard

12. All equipment used on the project to be cleaned after restoration completion

13. Disposal of all demolished materials removed from the site

For Professional Sewage Cleanup in Birmingham, AL, Call PuroClean!

If a sewage drain pipe backup happens in your home or business, contact the PuroClean professionals for sewage removal and cleaning services. Our employees use state-of-the-art equipment and cleaning systems to efficiently remediate the damaged building materials and contents.

PuroClean has proved time after time that our methods and our technicians are top quality, efficient, and work with care and empathy for all involved. PuroClean is your ideal damage restoration and cleaning firm and we pledge to do whatever needs to happen to save and restore all homes and businesses in the communities we serve.

*Not all PuroClean offices provide sewage cleanup and sanitation cleaning services.

Great job Rey and crew. Our home looks wonderful. Thank again.

Michael - Pelham, AL

"The PuroClean team did a great job on my restoration and remodel project. They are top notch in both the quality of work and service they provide on all fronts!"

Zac - Moody, AL


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