If you have a situation involving underground sewage seepage, you need to take prompt action to correct the plumbing related issue. You also need to obtain immediate assistance from a reputable biohazard cleanup company.
One of the most dangerous things that can happen at your home or business is underground sewage seepage. Underground sewage seepage is the release of waste from your home or business, mainly in the form of human feces and urine. The release of human feces and urine via underground sewage seepage is not only sickening to contemplate but it presents a very serious health hazard. Underground sewage seepage at your home presents a health hazard that can threaten the health and wellbeing of your family. If it takes place at your business, underground sewage seepage jeopardizes the health of workers and patrons of your establishment.
There are some important signs that may indicate a problem with underground sewage seepage:
- Unusually high water bill
- Continual sound of running water
- Unusually low water pressure
- Poor drainage
- Unexplained damp areas
- Lingering unpleasant odor
- Cracks around foundation
- Alterations in landscaping
- Rat sightings
- Other types of pest infestation
In addition to these key signs of hazardous sewage seepage, a home or business owner also needs to have a basic understanding of the professional assistance needed to remedy the situation. Addressing a sewage seepage problem involves the assistance of plumbing and biohazard remediation specialists. This is discussed more fully at the end of this article.
Unusually High Water Bill
A key sign that underground sewage seepage may be occurring is an unusually high water bill. With this in mind, you need to understand that sewage seepage may increase a water bill in one of two ways. First, a monthly water bill may experience a sudden, dramatic rise. Second, when a sewage seepage occurs or exists, the increase in the amount of a monthly water bill might be slow and gradual. The increase might not be noticeable unless the bills over the course of some months are examined closely.
A water bill can increase when there is underground sewage seepage because more water is used each time an effort is made to remove waste matter from a residence or business. For example, more water will be used after a toilet flush when a broken sewer pipe is at issue because more water will be drawn into the system following the use of a toilet.
Continual Sound of Running Water
Due to the nature of underground sewage seepage, in many instances the sound of running water will be continually heard. The sound of running water may seem to be rather distant. With that said, you may be better able to detect this audio sign of what might be a sewage seepage issue at junctures like faucets within the residence. The sound of running water will “echo” through the pipe system in a residence, business, or other structure.
Unusually Low Water Pressure
Low water pressure may also be detected if a situation involving underground sewage seepage exists. A key indicator would be a drop in water pressure when a toilet is flushed. It can also be detected when water drains from a sink, shower, or bathtub.
On a somewhat related note, another indication that underground sewage seepage is occurring is poor drainage. An example of poor drainage can be found in a shower or bath drain emptying very slowly or incompletely.
Unexplained Damp Areas
Another sign of underground sewage seepage is found in the presence of unexplained damp areas. These damp areas might be found on the grounds of a residence or business. As sewage seepage occurs, the area in which wastewater accumulates can ultimately result in the presence of damp areas on the surface of the ground, including the lawn. It is also possible that damp areas might occur in a location in a residence like a storm cellar or crawlspace if such an area has a dirt floor. It also depends on the manner in which sewage or wastewater pipes are routed through a property.
Lingering Unpleasant Odor
When underground sewage seepage occurs, a lingering unpleasant odor is also apt to exist. The predominant unpleasant odor is most likely to be associated with hydrogen sulfide gas. This can have an odor similar to that of rotten eggs.
Cracks Around Foundation
A situation involving underground sewage seepage can result in cracks around the foundation of a home or other business. The contents of raw sewage which is found in this type of seepage can be particularly hard on the materials that make up a foundation. If cracks around the foundation begin to occur, it is indicative of either a more long-term situation involving sewage seepage. In the alternative, it can also be a sign that the sewage seepage is occurring at a particularly high rate.
Alterations in Landscaping
Underground sewage seepage can also cause alterations in landscaping. Because sewage technically contains nutrients that are beneficial to plants, vegetation around underground sewage seepage may look particularly lush. Other alterations in landscaping that can be indicative of underground sewage seepage include:
- Pooled water
- Uneven paving
- Uneven ground
Rats tend to be attracted to the smell of raw sewage. When underground sewage seepage begins to occur, rats oftentimes are the first sign that there is something wrong with a sewage system at a home or business. Because rats, and rat droppings, can carry serious disease, the presence of these rodents enhance the health risks associated with underground sewage seepage.
Other Types of Pest Infestation
In addition to drawing rodents, underground sewage seepage also attracts other pests. The presence of these other pests can prove to be signs of an underground sewage seepage or leakage issue. These pests include moth flies and window gnats.
Two-Phase Remedy for Underground Sewage Seepage
If you do have an underground sewage seepage issue at your home or business, you need to engage a two-phase remedy. The first phase involves engaging the services of a qualified, experienced plumber with a background in addressing situations involving sewage system malfunctions. The second phase is the hiring of a reputable biohazard cleanup specialist with a background in remediating situations involving sewage seepage, flooding, and similar events.
These two professionals need to work in tandem when it comes to resolving a situation involving sewage seepage. Depending on the facts and circumstances surrounding sewage seepage, a biohazard remediation specialist may need to undertake at least some sewage cleanup work in order to enhance the safety of a site for plumbing professionals. Ultimately, a biohazard remediation specialist cannot fully complete a sewage contamination effort until the plumbing system itself is repaired and the seepage has stopped.