Water damage occurs in many different ways, but it's just as important to know the type of water damage as it is to know the source. The three categories range in areas of contamination and include clean water, gray water, and black water. Each of these is referred to as Category 1, Category 2, or Category 3, respectively. These categories require a different type of handling and mean different things for the structure and restoration of your home or business. In this post, we are going over what each category of water is, some examples of each, and how to properly handle when each type enters your home or business.
Category 1: Clean Water
Clean water is any water that is free from bacteria, viruses, and other harmful microorganisms. Water is clean when it has been treated to remove contaminants from the source or from its container. This water is likely clear in color and harmless to humans. This is the easiest type of category to clean up, as it doesn’t require any special protective gear. Clean water also comes from broken water supply lines or overflowing bathtubs or sinks.
Category 1 flooding is likely something you begin to handle on your own while you wait for help from JGB to arrive. You begin by opening windows, placing fans, and trying to get as much water cleaned up as possible. Obviously, if this is a large water loss, consider letting the experts at JGB handle it from the start.
Category 2: Gray Water
Gray water is water that is not contaminated with sewage but is also not clean. This type of water is harmful to humans, and you should use caution around this type of water. For the most part, this category of water is only harmful when ingested in large quantities.
Gray water comes from broken aquariums, overflowing dishwashers or washing machines, or an overflowing toilet with no feces. Category 2 water should be handled with care. We are specially trained to handle your category 2 water damage event, and we make sure to handle the situation in a safe and appropriate manner.
Category 3: Black Water
Black water is contaminated water that contains pathogens and pose a serious health risk. It often comes from sewage, but is also caused by other sources as well. Some blackwater examples include seawater flooding, groundwater, river water, sewage, and toilet overflow from the other side of the toilet trap. Black water contains bacteria, viruses, and parasites that are harmful to humans. It causes illness and disease like gastroenteritis (stomach flu), cholera, typhoid fever etc., so it is important for you to take action if this happens at home.
Category 3 water needs to be handled by professionals. At JGB, we have the right equipment and the right training to make sure you, our workers, and your building are safe throughout the entire mitigation and restoration process.
You should always try to prevent black water from entering your home during a flood and clean up as soon as possible. This helps limit damage as much as possible. If the problem is too big for you to handle, call the JGB right away.
The three types of water damage need to be handled uniquely. JGB is the local expert in water damage restoration, and we ensure that we use the highest standards of safety and cleanliness, and restoration when it comes to all categories of water. If your home is affected by water damage, there are steps you should take immediately, including calling a professional.