When sewer lines become obstructed, the thick, black water that forms as sewage is a health hazard, and is extremely unsanitary as it contains contaminants like pathogens, bacteria, and viruses that can present a risk of severe illness if exposed to people or pets. 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 dirty water all over your home or business. Knowing the cause of sewer backups, however, may help you avoid a hazardous occurrence in your basement, home or business. Following is a list of items that may help to prevent and handle sewage backups:

Causes of Sewage Backup

  • Heavy Rainfall – Excess rains can overpower your town or city’s storm sewer mainlines. If this happens, the waste can back up into the attached sewer lines putting your home or business in possible danger of water backflow. Growing rivers and streams, hurricanes and other similar events can force flood and sewage waters to mix and present serious health related problems. You should be highly cautious when walking in this type of water, and even stay watchful after the water recedes and dries up. It’s viable for the organic matter to become aerosolized and respirable, meaning there’s a chance you could inhale it into your lungs. To protect from contact or risk of breathing in these contaminants, proper PPE should be used at all times.
  • Roots from Trees – Trees can have strong roots that grow into water or sewer lines and crush or break them. Damage to pipes and a sewer 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 lines 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, sewer filled basements as well as entire home flooding. The older your neighborhood or dwelling may raise the chance of this type of damage occurring.
  • Clogged and Blocked Drain Pipes – If your home or business’s main sewer pipes or drain pipes become clogged, sewage may back up inside the building. A perfect example is: if a single toilet causes a sewage backup, the lines connected to that toilet, or the main drain lines of more toilets, will also suffer backflow flooding.
  • Old and/or Damaged Lines – Aging sewage systems have a propensity to fail and crack, leading to sewage backups and flooded homes or businesses full of sewage. If your home or neighborhood is older, the likelihood is greater that you’ll experience failing sewer lines than newer ones.
  • Copious Rainfall – Heavy and rapid downpours can overpower your local storm sewer lines rapidly. If these public sewers can’t deal with excess downpours, water can backup and progress 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 similar weather events can cause clean water to mix with sewage water and other chemicals and harmful toxins that cause serious health difficulties. Use extreme carefulness when moving on foot in this type of waste, but also remain cautious once it dries. The dried organic material can turn airborne and turn respirable. The right PPE needs to be utilized at all times to stop contact and risk inhaling contaminated air.
  • Blocked/Clogged Pipes – A clogged pipe or sewer line can force sewage to back up into your home or business. If only one toilet becomes fouled, the sewer water backup can spread on to the sewer lines and influence all attached toilets on that line.
  • Roots from Trees – Tree roots can cause damage to water and sewer lines. The roots from huge trees can grow into and around the lines and damage them excessively. If the roots around your property are not the problem, roots from closely located trees can cross property lines and harm your sewer pipes, causing a sewage issue. Be extra aware of all tree roots that could affect your mainline sewer pipes and/or pipes connected to your septic tank.

PuroClean’s sewage cleaning and sanitation process in Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ

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

1. Ensure all personnel and occupants stay safe by restricting access to the site to remediation employees only in order to prevent any health-related problems.

2. Valuation of the work place along with health and safety reviews.

3. Be confident that all restoration specialists are equipped with the correct personal protection equipment (PPE). This includes but is not limited to:

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

4. Use established engineering controls, critical barriers, to prevent cross-contamination.

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

6. Removal of bulk water, soil, and contaminates.

7. Disposal of all contaminated porous and semi-porous materials that are not able to be saved, which can be but are not limited to:

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

8. Implement cleaning processes and use of EPA certified biocides and antimicrobials

9. Physical 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. Drying of all items affected by the sewer water intrusion back to pre-loss dry state

12. Post remediation cleansing of all equipment used

13. Disposal of all remaining materials removed from the building

For the Perfect Professional Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ Sewage Cleanup Company, Call PuroClean Today!

If a sewage drain pipe backup takes place in your home or business, call the PuroClean specialists for sewage removal and cleaning services. Our technicians use state-of-the-art equipment and cleaning systems to efficiently remediate the damaged structures and contents.

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

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

FAQ

What is Biohazard?

Biohazards are any biological contaminants such as those found in sewage, mold, or any viral or bacterial contamination such as MRSA. Biohazards also include toxins found in decaying organisms, as well as [...]

Why can’t I clean up biohazard myself?

When a biohazard occurs, professionals are needed to clean and disinfect as improper treatment can spread contamination and lead to illness or life-threatening conditions. [...]

What does BBP mean?

Bloodborne pathogens (BBPs), as defined by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), means pathogenic microorganisms that are present in human blood and can cause disease in humans. These pathogens [...]

Is blood a biohazard?

Blood itself is not a biohazard, it’s what may be in the blood that is potentially hazardous, such as bloodborne pathogens (BBPs) or infectious microorganisms, that can cause diseases. [...]

Will my insurance cover crime scene cleanup?

Most homeowners insurance will cover crime scene (biohazard) cleanup. We recommend that you consult your insurance agent/carrier to find out if you can make a claim for your particular circumstance. [...]