There are few common house problems as insidious as water damage. Water is an extremely destructive force when it’s not controlled and it can get into a building in so many different ways. A leaky roof, an old pipe rusting through, a sudden flood, a burst pipe – there are so many ways that water can cause damage to commercial or residential buildings.
Understanding some of these common causes can help you learn how to identify potential problem points and hopefully cut off some future damage scenarios either before they happen or while they’re a minor issue before they become a major one.
Leaks & Damaged Pipes
This is a very common issue, especially in older buildings or homes. Just like anything else, pipes need to be replaced every so often and if they’re not it is very possible they start leaking. Even a drop at a time really adds up, and this can be a hard one to recognize right away without inspecting for it every so often where exposed pipes can actually be seen.
This should be much more obvious, and are especially common after a very strong cold snap or the spring after a particularly rough winter. A burst or broken pipe can cause massive amounts of damage in a very short time and it is really unlikely to go unnoticed. However, in some cases the break might be far enough off that the affected building doesn’t see it where the most foot traffic takes place, in which case a massively reduced flow of water to a faucet, sink, or other water based appliances should be seen as a warning sign something is off the mark.
Everyone has seen pictures of an area that gets hammered with heavy rains that result in flooding. Sometimes the water damage from this is just that dramatic, sometimes it’s less so when an entire neighborhood of basements floods from the ground becoming over-saturated. Either way, the flooding needs to be taken seriously.
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This is one of the major pains of fire: not only do you have fire damage and smoke damage, but you also have water damage from putting the fire out. All three need to be accounted for if you want a full and complete restoration.
3 Categories Of Water
During the process one of the first things a restoration specialist will do is examine the water and put it into one of three categories based on how dangerous it is to people.
Category 1 water is known as clean water and is just as it sounds: water that poses no threat to people at all in and of itself.
Category 2 water is called gray water and contain a variety of hazards like bacteria, fungi, and other materials that can cause serious illness in people when exposed.
Category 3 water is referred to as black water and is incredibly unsanitary and dangerous to be around.
The category of water helps to determine the equipment and response necessary to make it work.
Water damage comes in many different forms and from a wide variety of causes. By understanding these causes and the possible ramifications, you will have a better knowledge of how to deal with any potential water damage situations.