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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

The Difference Between Primary and Secondary Water Damage

4/20/2019 (Permalink)

As soon as water covers areas inside your business, the damage is considered primary.

You have probably encountered someone that had water flood his or her home or business from a busted pipe, an unexpected storm, a backed-up sewer, or a leaky roof. As the water flows into unexpected areas, the result can be extensive water damage in building materials and office furniture as they begin soaking up the liquid. If the area is not cleaned and dried swiftly enough, black mold may even be the result. But did you know there are two types of water damage that can result from the flooding water?

Primary Water Damage

As soon as water covers areas inside your business, the damage is considered primary. If the water is clean, as from

  • a broken pipe
  • a running hose
  • an overflowing bathroom sink

the area can be cleaned and dried quickly with little or no resulting problems. If the water is a gray or black category, the area can still be cleaned quickly, but the contaminated nature of the water means the area needs disinfection efforts before it can be considered safe to move back into.

Secondary Water Damage

The damage that occurs after, but concurrent to, a water infiltration event is considered secondary damage. High humidity during a water problem can often exacerbate the situation and cause black mold to grow and corrosion to set in, and both are considered secondary problems. If building materials soak up water, another form of secondary type damage may result in electrical problems or wood floor delamination. Since most secondary problems are difficult to see, it often takes a trained water damage specialist to notice the tell-tale signs.

Trusting your commercial building restoration to a specialty team after a water flood issue may seem unnecessary, but hidden secondary problems such as black mold can cause extensive restoration costs if not caught early. Keep your building safe in Affton, MO by addressing the flood waters as soon as they occur.

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