One of the worst scenarios a homeowner can find themselves facing is a backed-up sewage system. With wastewater seemingly free-flowing, you can experience extensive damage to your home's flooring, an awful odor, and even face health hazards. If you ever find yourself in this type of situation, it's critical you know what to do to minimize the extent of damage and make cleanup a lot easier.
1. Clear Anyone at Risk
Make sure you get your children, pets, elderly loved ones, and any other person who might have a compromised immune system away. The wastewater from sewage systems is filled with all sorts of bacteria, which can be especially harmful and can lead to infection and other illnesses. To ensure your at-risk loved ones don't come in contact with the bacteria, vacating the area is best.
2. Contact a Repair Company
Alert a professional cleanup company that a backup has occurred. A sewage system never backs up randomly; the issue is always the result of a failure, such as a clog in the line. Sewer professionals can help you facilitate the removal of the water and address the underlying issue to help you avoid the problem in the future.
3. Disconnect Utilities
If the water is low, locate your home's main power box and turn off the power. Even a small amount of water around electrical devices can lead to a fire, which will only make matters worse. If the backup is significant and there is any water near the main box — do not attempt to disconnect the power on your own. You need to contact the utility company to complete the step.
4. Remove Valuables
Assess the area and remove as many valuables as you can that have not come in contact with the wastewater. As the water sits, the moisture and bacteria in the air can start to affect items that aren't necessarily in the path of the water. However, by removing the items, you can lower the risk of damage to them.
5. Contact your Insurance Company
Let your insurance company know what happened. Many people have flood coverage on their insurance policies, but it's best to contact the insurance company to see if you have flood coverage for a sewage backup. This step is especially important since the insurance company can typically help you cover the cost for any replacement items you need, as well as damage to your home.
Whatever you do, ensure you take action right away after a backup. The sooner you react, the better the situation. For more information, contact a sewer cleaning service in your area.