Comprehensive Articles on Damage Types - Water, Smoke, Fire, Mold, and Smoke

Professional Sewage Cleanup vs. Doing It Yourself

When you’re dealing with the messy after effects of sewage damage, naturally your first instinct will be to clean it up as quickly as possible. However, due to the potential health hazards involved with handling sewage, it may not be advisable to undertake the sewage damage cleanup process on your own. In fact, in many cases your best option is to step away from the mess and call a sewage damage restoration service immediately. These experts will have the tools, experience and knowledge necessary to restore your home to its former glory without putting anyone’s health at risk. On the other hand, there are some instances in which you can do the job yourself and save the expense and possible hassle of calling in outside help. The trick is knowing when you need a professional sewage cleanup crew and when you can do it yourself. Here are a few questions to ask yourself to determine whether or not you need a pro:

  1. How severe is the damage? If the mess is limited to one small area, like the bathroom or the kitchen, and you know the source of the sewage – such as a clogged toilet or a burst pipe – then it is probably safe to begin the cleanup process on your own. You won’t have to worry about cleaning your entire home, and the sewage is relatively harmless. (However, you should still take basic safety precautions, such as wearing rubber gloves!) In contrast, a large-scale catastrophe, such as a flooded basement, demands professional assistance. Remember, there are two steps to the sewage damage cleanup process: Physically removing the sewage itself, and then using chemical disinfectants to kill microbes and restore sanitation. If you’re dealing with anything larger than a single room, you will need help to get the job done right.

  2. How long has the sewage been present in your home? The longer you allow sewage to sit without cleaning it up, the more serious the problem becomes; that is why you need to begin the cleanup process as quickly as possible in order to minimize damage to your home and your family’s health. If it’s only been a matter of minutes or even hours and the affected area is relatively small, you could try cleaning up on your own, but if the sewage has been sitting for days or weeks, you need a professional right away.

  3. What kinds of objects have been contaminated? Again, if your sewage damage is limited to a room like the bathroom or the kitchen, consider yourself lucky. These areas tend to have tiled flooring, rather than wall-to-wall-carpeting, and the surfaces are usually non-porous, making the restoration process that much easier. Sewage that has contaminated carpets, rugs, drapes, fabrics, papers or other delicate materials should be given expert attention from a restoration specialist.

  4. Do you have enough ventilation to complete the job on your own? The sewage damage cleanup process must take place in a well-ventilated area for your comfort and safety. If you cannot open windows and turn on a large fan while you work, do not try to clean up on your own. Instead, call a pro and turn the job over to them.

In today’s tough economy, many homeowners are looking for ways to cut corners and save money whenever possible. Yet when it comes to the serious business of sewage damage restoration, you can’t afford to put your health or your home at risk. If you’re not sure that you can handle the task on your own, don’t hesitate to contact a sewage cleanup professional and ensure that the job is done right the first time.