31 March 2020

What to do if you have a sewage backup…

The first priority when dealing with the aftermath of a large sewage backup is your safety. You should contact your insurance company, prior to beginning clean up, to determine if the policy has any coverage. You should also shut off the gas and electricity, if you have standing water.

Thorough cleaning of indoor sewage spills is necessary to protect people from the harmful bacteria and viruses. Cleanup should begin as soon as possible to reduce the risk of exposure to sewage. If there is standing water, it should be pumped out slowly.

The following tips comprise a guide to help with proper sewage cleanup:

  • Keep children and pets out of the area until cleanup has been completed.
  • Have a first-aid kit handy for minor injuries that may occur while cleaning.
  • Wear rubber gloves and boots along with a mask or goggles.
  • If there is standing water, use pails or pumps, then vacuum with a wet-dry shop vac. This water should not enter the septic system.
  • Remove all furniture, loose rugs and so on from the area.
  • Saturated wall-to-wall carpeting and pad usually cannot be adequately cleaned. They should be removed, wrapped in plastic and taken to a transfer station or sanitary landfill. If you decide to keep the carpeting, hire a licensed carpet cleaning company to steam clean and disinfect the carpet.
  • All hard surfaces, such as linoleum, hardwood floors, concrete, wood moldings, wood, metal furniture, and so on, should be thoroughly cleaned with hot water and a mild dish detergent, and then rinsed with a bleach solution by mixing 1/2 cup of liquid household bleach to 1 gallon of water. Let the surface air-dry.
  • Upholstered furniture, loose rugs, drapery and so on should be professionally cleaned or discarded.
  • Remove and replace plaster, drywall and lath that have been saturated and are soft to the touch. If the surface has just gotten wet, clean as you would a hard surface but do not saturate the plaster.

We recommend having your septic tank pumped every 4 years to avoid a messy backup. If you cannot remember how long it has been since you last pumped your tank, it is most likely due. Call Cat Cans today to get an appointment scheduled. 785-539-9700