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How to Bounce Back Fast from Water or Sewer Damage

One of the worst things that can happen in your home is water or sewer damage. It’s not only a complete mess, but if not treated immediately, is dangerous, expensive, and destructive.

Water Damage

Due to unforeseen circumstances like burst pipes, undetected leaks or flooding, water damage causes a lot of damage unless the water is removed quickly.

Potential Problems from Water Damage

It’s important that all of the water be removed quickly and completely. If not, damage escalates. Some of the damage and loss comes in the form of saturated drywall, swelling or rotted wood, rusted metal and the onset of mold and bacteria.

A professional water damage restoration company has the equipment to remove a lot of water very quickly. After that, industrial strength drying equipment is brought in to thoroughly dry all affected areas while moisture levels are monitored. They will clean and sanitize your home to prevent mold, bacteria growth and odors.

A professional service will also remove unsalvageable items and throughout the process, works directly with your insurance company.

Sewer Damage

There aren’t too many things worse than a sewer backup.

Sewer backups can be caused by long tree roots, old or damaged sewer lines and clogged drains. Older homes with older sewer lines are at greater risk to experience sewer backups.

There are usually warning signs that a sewer backup is coming.

  • Slow drains, always start in fixtures at the lowest level (first floor, basement)
  • Clogs in multiple drains; wastewater is not able to pass
  • Leaking or sewage coming from the cleanout pipe (located outside, in the basement)
  • Bubbling sinks, toilets
  • A foul, sewer smell coming from drains
  • Sewage coming up through floor drains or showers
  • High water levels in floor drain

Potential Problems from Sewer Damage

Because of the dangers associated with sewer water backups, you should always call in a professional to manage the cleanup.

To say sewer water is contaminated is an understatement. It may contain any type of human or industrial waste.

Sewer water is dangerous because it has high levels of bacteria which exposes homeowners to diseases of the worst kind. Even breathing in sewer water vapors can make you very sick.

Sewer water puts you at risk for E. coli and Hepatitis A. Airborne contaminants and pathogens can trigger asthma attacks and respiratory distress.

A certified restoration company will clean up the wastewater, in addition to your furniture, carpet and other items affected by the damage. They have the products to safely restore your home by disinfecting and deodorizing to kill and stop the spread of fungus and bacteria throughout.

The experts at RCS are only a phone call away, 24 hours a day. RCS has been proudly serving Santa Rosa, Sonoma County, and the North Bay area since 1975. We have the knowledge, equipment, and experience to manage the entire restoration of your home after water or sewer damage.

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Inhalation Health Effects of Mold

If your home has high humidity, you have recently had water damage, or you have excess moisture in any area of your home, you may have mildew and mold problems, which can ultimately lead to health problems if not dealt with. Within 24 hours of any moisture accumulating onto an area (and not evaporating), such as from a leaky pipe or a hot and humid basement, mold spores begin to grow and can easily migrate onto other surfaces as well as float in the air, causing health issues in humans and animals.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA):

Molds produce allergens (substances that can cause allergic reactions) and irritants. Inhaling or touching mold or mold spores may cause allergic reactions in sensitive individuals. Allergic responses include hay fever-type symptoms, such as sneezing, runny nose, red eyes, and skin rash.

Allergic reactions to mold are common. They can be immediate or delayed. Molds can also cause asthma attacks in people with asthma who are allergic to mold. In addition, mold exposure can irritate the eyes, skin, nose, throat, and lungs of both mold-allergic and non-allergic people. Symptoms other than the allergic and irritant types are not commonly reported as a result of inhaling mold. Research on mold and health effects is ongoing.

Unfortunately mold isn’t the only consequence of a damp area. The experts at the National Capital Poison Center (NCPC) list other things homeowners need to watch out for when things get wet:

  • bacteria
  • dust mites
  • break-down products of bacteria and molds, such as proteins, cell-wall particles (glucans) and volatile organic compounds (the actual cause of the musty odor associated with mold)
  • airborne chemicals, gasses, and particulate matter caused by destruction of materials by growing molds

And let’s not forget about Sassy and Fido! There are health repercussions for them as well. A doctor with PetMD lists the following signs that your pet has been poisoned by mold:

  • According to Coates, problems with mold in pets fall into three categories: inhalation, ingestion, and allergic reactions.
  • Inhaling mold can cause respiratory distress (breathing that takes more effort or occurs more rapidly than normal), nasal discharge, coughing, wheezing, sneezing, lethargy, and sometimes bleeding from the mouth and/or nose.
  • According to Dr. Mahaney, the ingestion of mold can lead to gastric symptoms such as decreased appetite, vomiting, and stool changes.
  • Signs of an allergy to mold might include excessive scratching, chewing, or licking, which sometimes progresses to the point of fur loss and the development of sores.

Whether you are prone to allergies, asthma, or have a compromised system (and even if you don’t), you won’t want to risk your health. If you suspect there to be a mold problem in your home, call professionals immediately to come out and test the area. In this situation it is definitely better to be safe than sorry.

Has your home recently suffered from water damage or an infestation of mold due to excess moisture? Do you need help from a restoration specialist to determine if you have a mold problem? Don’t worry—Restoration Certified Specialists, Inc. will take care of you! They have been proudly serving the Santa Rosa and North Bay areas since 1975.