The PuroClean Blog

How Do You Handle Sewage Backup in the Basement?

The sight of a sewage backup is never pretty and flooding resulting from sewage backups can cause extensive damage to a property. Sewage contains contaminants like bacteria, fungi, parasites, or viruses, making the sewage backup cleaning a health risk as well.

Not only is the restoration job dangerous, but moisture may hide behind walls and further problems like mould growth can follow. Calling a professional restoration company is the best way to deal with a sewage flood in a basement. Yet, here’s what property owners can do to mitigate the damage in their basement before the restoration team arrives:

  • The flooded area should be evacuated. Sewage contaminants are hazardous to pets as well.
  • The electrical power in the flooded area should be turned off. Electrical wires or appliances might come in contact with standing water or wet materials.
  • Caution should be exercised when attempting to turn off the main circuit breaker if it’s in the basement. Electrical devices that were touched by water can be dangerous.
  • Those who plan to walk through sewage water should wear protective clothing like a facemask, eyeglasses, gloves, and rubber boots.
  • The valve for the main water line of the property should also be shut off. Here’s how to shut off utilities during a disaster.
  • The insurance company must be notified about the sewage backup. This type of flooding is not covered by standard homeowners insurance, unless extra endorsements for sewers and drains are purchased.
  • Also to be notified is the municipal authority or sewer department if the property is connected to a public sewer.
  • The water supply system in the property should not be used (e.g. flushing toilets or drain tubs and sinks) until the backup problem is fixed.
  • Windows and doors should be opened to let fresh air in and ventilate the area.
  • Chlorine bleach can be added to the standing water to disinfect it a little.

As basements are the most flood-prone areas in a home, here’s how to keep water out of the basement and how to choose a sump pump. The PuroClean team stands ready to provide professional restoration services to any property affected by fire, water or mould damage.

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