September 30, 2021
When you end up with sewage backup in your home, you quickly realize that it’s not easy to deal with. A backup can occur when sewer water overflows from the drains in your home, which include sinks, toilets, showers, and tubs.
It’s important to act quickly with the necessary steps to take control of the mess and ensure that your belongings and the affected space are properly sanitized. Delaying the water cleanup can cause any Chicago homeowner more damage and health hazards than expected.
CAUSES OF A SEWER BACKUP
A clog in your sewer line can occur as a result of solid materials building up over time. In fact, this is one of the most common reasons we see sewer backups.
When pouring things like fats and oils, coffee grounds, food solids, and large food waste into your kitchen drain, it can become lodged in the line and capture more solid debris in the sewer over time.
You can also experience a sewer backup when flushing hair, excess toilet paper, paper towels, and sanitary napkins down the toilet or a drain.
Another cause of sewer backup is broken or leaking pipes, poorly built sewer systems, snow and ice, or mainline backups as a result of vandalism, natural disasters, or infrastructure breakdown.
SAFETY AT HOME
Did you know that it is unsafe for your family to remain inside your home after a sewer backup? The contaminated water may be extremely hazardous to your health.
Be sure that your home has been fully sanitized before re-inhabiting it. With contaminated water invading your home, you will most likely need professional sanitation and water mitigation in Chicago.
HAZARDS CAUSED BY SEWER BACKUPS
Sewer backups can create serious hazards that go beyond the obvious damage to your home, property, or possessions. When untreated, the area affected by the sewer backup can spread disease through organisms like bacteria, viruses, and parasites.
Avoid contact with the sewer water at all times, as well as anything the water has been in contact with. The contaminants in sewer water can cause painful irritations and rashes when in contact with skin.
Ingesting contaminants can lead to nausea, abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, and even hepatitis-A. Even inhaling airborne microorganisms deposited into the air by sewer water can cause serious respiratory infections and allergic reactions.
If the damage isn’t that serious and you believe you can clean the home yourself, we recommend wearing rubber boots, protective gloves, goggles, and a facemask to minimize contact with any contaminants.
If, however, your home experiences a major sewer backup, including water in contact with electrical outlets or wiring, we recommend that you leave the cleaning to a professional company experienced with water restoration in Chicago. They are very well trained and know exactly how to deal with contaminants.
Many people believe that bleach is the best solution for major flood cleanup in Chicago, but that is not the case. In Fact, bleach does a poor job of eliminating the contamination left behind by standing sewer water. Although bleach works great as a common household disinfectant, sewer backup is much more harmful to your home and your health than common household stains. A sewer backup should be cleaned with much stronger disinfectants.
To appropriately sanitize all surfaces in your home affected by sewage backup, combine one-quarter of a cup of bleach with one gallon of water to create a solution that can clean all hard surfaces. Leave it on the surface for at least one minute, and rinse the area with clean soapy water.
For carpets and fabrics that weren’t damaged or touched by the wastewater, use a less abrasive ammonia product as your sanitizer. Once cleaned, rinse every surface again with soapy water, and repeat the process as needed.
DECIDING WHETHER TO KEEP AN ITEM OR NOT
Other than hard-surface items that can go through proper cleaning and restoration, it’s best not to keep anything that came in contact with sewer water. These items may have absorbed hazardous waste materials that could cause harm.
Sewer water is extremely hazardous, so you don’t want to risk your health or the health of your family, even if the item is important.
CHECK YOUR SEWER BACKUP INSURANCE COVERAGE
Did you know that sewer backup is not always covered in your home policy? In some cases, homeowners are responsible for a sewage backup or water damage restoration bill in Chicago. When you purchase property insurance, make sure sewer backup is a part of your policy as it can save you thousands of dollars and a great deal of heartache in the event of a problem.
Property owners are typically responsible for covering the costs of this type of damage, but renter’s insurance may also provide additional coverage.
A sewer backup can be a stressful ordeal to handle on your own. So it’s important to stay informed on all the necessary precautions needed to handle the situation. You can do that by speaking to a professional about water extraction in Chicago.