How to Categorize Levels of Water Damage and Contamination
Despite what many people think, not all water damage is created equal. There are a number of different classes and categories of water damage all dependent on level of contamination and severity. According the IICRC (Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification), there are three categories of water/liquid and four classes of the damage.
Category 1 – This is basically any liquid from a clean and/or sanitary source like a faucet, a toilet, or fountain.
Category 2 – This refers to liquid/water that used to be called grey water, which can potentially cause illness if ingested. This includes things like dishwasher or washing machine overflow, toilet overthrow or sink drains.
Category 3 – This category used to be called black water; it is extremely unsanitary. This includes sewer backup, flooding from rivers, and stagnant liquid that has fostered bacterial growth.
Now let’s examine the classes;
Class 1 – This is very easy to deal with and only affects a part of a single room, with little to no wet carpet, with water only on surfaces like wood or concrete.
Class 2 – This class effects and entire room, and wetness has went up the walls about 12” or more, with moisture still in the structure.
Class 3 – This class basically means that ceiling, walls, carpet and insulation are all saturated with liquid or water. This is often due to water coming from overhead.
Class 4 – This class means that there has been enough water or time to saturate materials with very low levels of permeation, like hardwood or stone.
The IICRC has been the driving force in establishing the main industry standards and reference guides for professional carpet cleaning, water damage restoration and mold remediation. These IICRC standards take years to develop and require the coordination of experts in the field: manufacturers, industry organizations, insurance professionals, training schools, contractors, and public health professionals.
Every five years, the standards are reviewed and updated. The water damage restoration field changes rapidly with advancements in technology and science, and therefore the standards must evolve to keep pace.
Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration and we are an IICRC Certified Firm. We believe in continuous training: from initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property. Call SERVPRO of Lynnwood at 425-774-1148 for all your restoration needs!