Dealing with sewage can be a nasty business.  This type of water damage carries with it risks to your health and your wallet.  Knowing these risks and what cleanup is necessary may help you better understand that this is a DIY project better left to the professionals.

Health Hazards

  • Sewage water contamination can range. Greywater is water from utilities like sinks, tubs, showers, or dishwashers and is considered mildly contaminated.  Black water refers to the water used to flush toilets that mixes with human waste.  This type of water can contain contaminants like parasites, viruses, bacteria, and fungi.  Contact with this type of water is considered highly hazardous as it can pose serious health risks including hepatitis A and encephalitis.
  • If proper protocols for cleanup are not carefully met, then people and animals are at high risk of becoming sick.


  • Sewage water will easily find its way into porous surfaces like walls, cabinets, and floors. That means that damages are not always easily visible.  Damages behind walls may not be discovered until it is too late.
  • Mold can begin forming in as little as 24-48 hours. Any surfaces that are not dried properly are at risk.   Mold exposure can bring with it health risks, especially to those with health problems like asthma or compromised immune systems.
  • Anytime there is flooding it is always important to be aware of the risks of electrocution or explosion. Shut off the power if you feel there is a risk and only if you can do so safely.  Never enter a flooded area unless electricity and gas have been turned off.  If there is a smell of gas, evacuate your home and do not return until it has been assessed by professionals.  Do not touch any electrical lines, equipment, or fixtures during or after a flood, even with the power turned off.


  • Any items that have come in contact with sewage waters are contaminated. That means that they cannot just be rinsed off and used again.
  • Any type of porous materials will need to be thrown out. That may include rugs, books, curtains, etc.
  • Hard surfaces can be cleaned with professional high-grade disinfectants.
  • Drywall, carpets, padding, and other porous materials affected will most likely have to be removed and replaced.

Leave it to the Professionals

  • Water restoration professionals are highly trained and carry the right equipment to get the job done quickly and efficiently.
  • They will take care in removing the water and sewage, removing any contaminated property, drying out the damaged area, and thoroughly sanitizing the contaminated area with high-grade cleaning products and techniques.

Any type of water damage is time sensitive, and it’s imperative that cleanup begins immediately.  This is especially true for sewage damage because it requires special care and consideration.  Anytime there is a high risk, it is best to leave cleanup to the professionals.  Only residential water restoration services like Pro Response have the professional equipment and knowledge to clean your home safely and thoroughly.  We are available 24/7 to address any water damage needs you have, including those that may be hazardous.  We’ll get your home cleaned up and back to pre-loss condition quickly and with care.  Call us today!


Related Blog Posts:

What Can Happen if I Leave Water Damage Untreated?

Effects of Water Damage on Materials in your Home

After Water Damage, How Long Does it Take for Mold to Form?

How Can Water Damage Affect Your Health

Preventing Mold in the Bathroom

5 Reasons to Call a Professional for Water Damage

Be on the Lookout for These Leaks

What Should I do if My Home Floods?


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