Congratulations To Our Most Recently Certified Water Restoration Technicians, Matt Drinkwalter & Billy Apostal
We are very proud off all of our employees and are committed to providing them with the latest in education. We keep our team members certified and constantly learning.
The Water Damage Restoration Technician course is designed to teach restoration personnel that perform remediation work to give them a better concept of water damage, it’s effects and techniques for drying of structures. This course will give residential and commercial maintenance personnel the background to understand the procedures necessary to deal with water losses, sewer back-flows, and contamination such as mold.
There are two key questions your water damage restoration contractor must be able to answer. First, what is the category of water? Second, how much damage or destruction has the water caused? Answers to these questions enable the water damage restoration contractor to create a professional scope of work and action plan.
What are the categories of water?
According to the IICRC, there are several different levels and classes involved in liquid destruction. From the IICRC’s S-500 standards, there are three categories describing the type of liquid involved:
Category 1 Water (Clean Water)
Water that originated directly from a sanitary source and when exposed to it, either through the skin, inhaled or ingested, does not cause a great deal of harm to humans. Examples of Category 1 Water: broken water supply lines, melting ice or snow, falling rain water, and tub or sink overflows (no contaminates).
Category 2 Water (Gray Water)
Defined as water with bacteria present, but no solid waste, carrying microorganisms and nutrients for microorganisms. Category 2 water does have the potential to cause discomfort or sickness if consumed or exposed to humans. Examples of Category 2 water: discharge from dishwashers or washing machines, toilet bowl overflows (urine, no feces), seepage due to hydrostatic pressure, and sump pump failures.
Category 3 Water (Black Water)
Contains pathogenic agents and is grossly unsanitary which includes raw sewage and other contaminated water sources, such as flooding from sea water, ground surface water and rising water from rivers or streams. To learn more about Category 3, read our two part series which described some of the challenges we faced during the Calgary flood in 2013.
HOW MUCH DAMAGE OR DESTRUCTION HAS THE WATER CAUSED?
According to the IICRC there are four classes of destruction:
The lowest and easiest to deal with, this has a slow evaporation rate. Only part of a room or area was affected, there is little or no wet carpet, and the moisture has only affected materials with a low permeance rate, such as plywood or concrete.
With a fast evaporation rate, this level affects an entire room, carpeting, or cushioning, the wetness has wicked up the walls at least 12”, and there is moisture remaining in structural materials.
This class has the fastest evaporation rate, and ceilings, walls, insulation, carpet and sub-floors are all saturated. The liquid may have come from overhead.
This class is labeled as specialty drying situations, which means there has been enough liquid and time to saturate materials with very low permeance, such as hardwood, brick, or stone.
It is important to understand that when you experience water damage, the longer you wait to begin dealing with the concern, the worse it can get. You should not allow the water to sit because the risk of bio-hazard increases. In short, in 2 to 3 days, category 1 water can turn into category 2 water and eventually category 3 water as other bacteria and pathogens begin to proliferate.
Bottom line, act immediately. Call a restoration professional to assess the category of water and extent of damage. Once this is determined, the scope of work will assess structural issues based on the class of damage, outline what contents need to be removed, how to deal with and remove excess water, a drying and monitoring strategy using air movers and dehumidifers, and a sanitizing plan to ensure a healthy environment.
It is important to understand that the goal of water damage restoration is to restore the property to pre-loss condition. With this in mind, once all the work has been done we strongly advise that you hire a Third Party Environmental consultant to perform post-remediation tests, particularly, if any mold or category 2 or 3 water was present. This final step will provide further peace of mind that the water damage restoration contractor you hired did a professional job.
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