When sewer pipes become obstructed, the thick, black water that presents as sewage is a health hazard, and is tremendously unsanitary as it contains contaminants like pathogens, bacteria, and viruses that can present a risk of extreme sickness illness if exposed to humans or animals. If you have a sewage backup in your basement, or your toilet has backed up, you will need to repair it quickly, or you will end up with sewage all over your floors. Knowing the cause of sewer backups, however, may help you avoid a hazardous situation in your basement, home or business. Here’s a list of items that may help to prevent and handle sewage backups:

Sewage Backup Causes

  • Considerable Rainfall – Excess rains can overwhelm your town or city’s storm sewer system. If this happens, the waste can expand into the connected sewer lines bringing your home or business in possible danger of water backflow. Swelling rivers and streams, hurricanes and other similar events can force flood and sewage waters to mix and present genuine health related problems. You should be immensely cautious when walking in this sort of water, and even stay vigilant after the water recedes and dries up. It’s viable for the organic matter to be aerosolized and respirable, meaning there’s a chance you could inhale it into your lungs. To stop contact or risk of inhaling these contaminants, legitimate PPE should be worn at all times.
  • Roots from Trees – Trees can have long roots that grow into water or sewer pipes and crush or impair them. Damage to pipes and a sewage backup can also be induced by tree roots that aren’t even on your property. Be very aware of any tree roots that can sprawl into your water and sewer pipes that lead to the central sewer line or septic system.
  • Old/Aging Sewer Lines – Older and aging sewage systems are susceptible to crumbling and cracking, inducing sewer backups, sewer filled basements along with entire home flooding. The older your neighborhood or dwelling may raise the threat of this type of damage occurring.
  • Clogged and Blocked Drain Pipes – If your home or business’s main sewer line or drain pipes become fouled, sewage may back up inside the dwelling. A perfect 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 become backed up.
  • Old and/or Damaged Lines – Older sewage systems have a tendency to suffer damage and crack, leading to sewer water influx and flooded homes or businesses full of sewage. If your home or neighborhood is older, the chance is greater that you’ll experience failing sewer lines than newer ones.
  • Heavy Rain – Heavy and sudden downpours can overwhelm your local storm sewer lines promptly. If these public sewer pipes can’t deal with excess downpours, water can backup and flow into connected sewer lines. This can put your home or business at risk of backflow problems. Local flood waters from events like rising rivers and creeks, hurricanes, or any other weather events can cause clean water to mix with sewage water and other chemicals and harmful toxins that cause serious health ailments. Use extreme caution when wading in this type of waste, but also stay cautious once it dries. The dried organic waste can turn airborne and turn respirable. Proper PPE needs to be utilized at all times to prevent contact and risk inhaling contaminated air.
  • Blocked/Clogged Sewer Lines – A fouled 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 influence all linked toilets on that line.
  • Tree Roots – Tree roots can wreak havoc on water and sewer pipes. The roots from huge trees can make their way into and around the pipes and damage them excessively. If the roots around your property are not the culprit, roots from closely located trees can grow under property lines and damage your sewer line, causing a sewage problem. Be extra aware of all tree roots close to your mainline sewer pipes and/or pipes that run to your septic tank.

PuroClean’s sewage cleaning and sanitation process in Northwest Austin, TX

PuroClean’s process for cleaning and restoration of Category 3 water, also known as sewer and contaminated water backup clean up according to the IICRC industry standards, is as follows:

1. Ensuring safety for all employees and occupants by placing restrictions on site access to remediation personnel only in order to prevent health related occurrences.

2. Inspection of the work place along with health and safety surveys.

3. Ensure proper personal protection equipment (PPE) is being utilized by all restoration personnel. This may include but is not limited to:

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

4. Put engineering controls in place, as well as critical barriers if needed to stop any cross-contamination from occurring.

5. Completely getting rid of any potential safety risks if possible.

6. Bulk water, soil, and contaminates removal

7. Disposal of all contaminated porous and semi-porous materials which are not salvageable, which can include but are not limited to:

  • Carpet, rugs, pad, or underlayment
  • Padded and upholstered items
  • Drywall materials
  • Vinyl flooring and underlayment
  • Wooden flooring

8. Cleaning procedures put in place and the use of EPA certified biocides and antimicrobials

9. Actual cleaning of all remaining structures

10. A third-party Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH) is recommended to perform clearance testing, to ensure the building is returned to a pre-loss condition for health and safety.

11. All materials affected by the water to be dried and returned to pre-loss dry standards

12. Post restoration cleaning of all equipment used

13. Disposal of all demo materials removed from the building

For Professional Sewage Cleanup in Northwest Austin, TX, Call PuroClean!

PuroClean technicians put to use state-of-the-art equipment and cleaning procedures to effectively restore and clean the affected building materials and items from your home or business. If a sewage drain pipe backup from blockage is your problem, call our highly trained staff for sewage removal and cleaning services.

The high standard of our sewage abatement and cleaning services along with the speed in which we complete the work, and the sheer compassion we practice throughout the process make us your complete damage restoration and remediation company. PuroClean promises to do whatever it takes to save, clean and restore all properties that are within our service regions.

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


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