If your home has been subject to flooding, leaking pipes, improper sealing from the elements, or other water-related issues, it is more than likely that it has suffered some form of water damage. In cases like these, water damage restoration services are there to return your home to a pristine, undamaged state. Because this kind of damage can affect homes in so many ways that are not obvious or are difficult to correct, restoration services that specialize in water damage need specific skill sets that most contractors do not have. To determine how much specialty is needed, and how expensive the repair is, it is important to understand the different types of water damage.
Water damage can be broken down into many different types, each requiring different levels of expertise to correct. A water damage restoration company will start by examining the damage and classifying it in two ways: class and category.
Class 1 water damage is minimal. A room that has had a little water soak into the carpet and was caught quickly falls into class 1.
Class 2 damage is an entire room that has had water soak into the carpet and walls.
Class 3 damage is when a room has been thoroughly soaked, affecting walls, ceiling, and floor.
Class 4 damage is when serious damage has affected difficult to repair materials like stone or hardwood.
Category 1 water damage is damage done by clean tap water or other fresh water, such as from rain, broken pipes, toilet tanks, and the like.
Category 2 water damage refers to grey water. This is water that is not pure water but does not contain hazardous or unsanitary elements. This can be water from a shower, dishwasher, washing machine, or other water that has been used for cleaning.
Category 3 water damage is done by hazardous, disease-carrying water. This includes sewage, water that has been allowed to sit long enough to grow dangerous bacteria or mold, or some cases of flooding from a river or other outside water flow.
By combining the class and category of water damage, the cost and difficulty of restoration can be relayed to the contractor responsible for the job. The classification determines what type of equipment will be needed, and what skill sets are necessary. A higher classification level means a much more difficult, dangerous, and expensive repair job.