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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

How Is Water Damage Classified?

1/4/2022 (Permalink)

Air movers in a kitchen floor Air movers in a kitchen after a water loss.

The Categories Of Water Damage

Restoration professionals classify water damage into three categories. The category corresponds to the degree of contamination. Category One water damage has the least contamination and requires the simplest cleanup process, even though damage from a pipe break can be extensive. Areas exposed to contaminated water must be disinfected. Learn more about the categories of water damage.

Category One

Category One water is not contaminated. This water originates from a supply line and has several distinctive qualities:

  • Clean
  • Treated
  • May burst or spray

This category of water damage may involve large amounts of clean water. It is important to shut off the water supply and contact a plumber as soon as possible. Gather water and take immediate action to remove all standing water, as Category One water can degrade into contaminated water in as little as 48 hours.

Category Two

Category Two water is sometimes referred to as gray water. This category includes water from appliances, baths, or showers. This water may contain chemicals or microbes, but does not contain solid waste. It is still necessary to disinfect areas exposed to Category Two water.

Category Three

Category Three water is also known as black water. This water is highly contaminated and either contains solid waste or originates from outdoor flooding. There are a few common causes of incidents involving this category of water:

  • Sewer backups
  • Flooded toilets
  • Heavy rain
  • Rising bodies of water

It is a good idea to wear personal protective equipment while cleaning up Category Three water. It is also necessary to thoroughly disinfect any area exposed to this water.

These are the three categories of water damage used by experts. A homeowner may clean and dry minor leaks, but larger incidents or contaminated water may require the expertise of a residential cleanup and restoration firm in Homer City, PA. Professionals can properly treat primary damage and prevent additional damage.

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