Categories of Water Damage

Categories of Water damage loss as per IICRC - 500

Category 1 - Clean Water

  • broken water supply lines
  • tub or sink overflows
  • with no contaminants,
  • appliance malfunctions
  • involving water supply lines,
  • melting ice or snow,
  • falling rainwater, broken toilet tanks,
  • toilet bowls that do not contain contaminants or additives

Category 2 - Gray Water

  • discharged water from dishwashers
  • washing machines
  • overflows from toilet bowls
  • sump pump failures
  • seepage
  • broken aquariums
  • rain water or melting snow seeping through unsanitary surfaces.

Cushion from carpet must be removed and replaced.

Category 3 - Black Water

  • grossly unsanitary water
  • containing pathogenic agents arising from sewage or other contaminated water sources entering or affecting the indoor environment
  • toilet back-flows that originate beyond the trap
  • flooding from seawater
  • ground surface water

Carpet and cushion must be removed and disposed along with other hygroscopic material.

Definition of water loss is dependent on time and temperature characteristics present at the site. Category 1 and Category 2 water loss situations can become Category 3 water losses after sufficient time as defined by the IICRC S500 standard.

Quick Reference to Mold!

Mold needs moisture to grow. Mold does not grow on dry materials. Molds are microscopic fungi, a group of organisms which also includes mushrooms and yeasts. Fungi are highly adapted to grow and reproduce rapidly, producing spores and mycelia in the process.

You encounter Mold every day. Foods spoil because of mold. Leaves decay and pieces of wood lying on the ground rot due to Mold. That fuzzy black growth on wet window sills is mold. Paper or fabrics stored in a damp place get a musty smell that is due to the action of molds.

What makes Molds grow?

Molds will grow if we provide them water, moisture and nutrients. So If we keep the property dry, Molds dos not grow. High moisture levels can be the result of water coming in from the outside, through the floor, walls or roof, or from plumbing leaks, or moisture produced by the people living in the home, through daily activities like bathing, washing clothes or cooking. Water enters the building when there is a weakness or failure in the structure. Moisture accumulates within the home when there is not enough ventilation to expel that moisture or when water damage has occurred and proper mitigation and remediation is not performed.