530-751-3821 or 855-224-4651

Categories and classes of water damage

Water Damage Benefits



Categories and classes of water damage


To help create a common language and to help allow for standardization between agents and adjuster, the institute of inspection, cleaning and restoration certification (II CRC) has created the IICRC S500 water Damage Restoration  Standard and Reference Guide. It is a standard of care for the water Damage restoration industry. Industry. The IICRC S 500 breaks down water damage into categories and classes and gives us guidelines to follow when dealing with each.


Category 1- CLEAN WATER originates from a source that does not pose substantial harm to humans, include such as:


• Broken pipes

• Incoming water supply line to washing machines

• Broken toilet tank (above the toilet)

• Rainwater or melted ice (provided it has not been contaminated)

• Sink or overflow (with no contamination)


Please note: category 1 may originate from a clean source, but when it comes into contact with a contaminated source it may change to a category 2 or even 3. Time can also change a category 2 or 3 loss.


Category 2 – unsanitary or gray water contains a significant degree of contamination, either physical, biological or chemical, and has the potential to cause discomfort or sickness if consumed by humans


• Examples of category 2 water source may include:

• Small overflow of toilet bowls with no feces.

• Broken aquariums

• Dishwasher and clothes washer over-flows

• Flooding from sump-pump failure

• Punctured water

Water from hydrostatic pressure (not surface from saturated ground)


Note: category 2 source can turn into category 3 loss over time


Category 3- Grossly unsanitary or black water contains pathogenic agents.


Examples may include:

• Sewage back – flows (may contain unknown contaminants beyond urine and feces)

• All forms of ground surface water, water, sea water and flooding from rivers and streams (contains organic contaminants)

• Water that contains chemical or other wastes.

• All toilet back-flows that originate from below the trap.



• Extent of damage by what areas are affected

• The type of flooring

• The location and the size of the affected area


CLASS 1 WATER has a slow rate of evaporation and affect only a small area or portion of the room with materials absorbing minimum moisture. Class 1 water loss would involve materials with a low – permeance factor, such as VCT concrete, particle board, plywood and structural wood (beams joists, studs etc.). If carpet and cushion are involved, it would be minimal and confined to a small area or a small amount of water, and only affected


CLASS 2 WATER has a fast rate of evaporation and affects the entire room of carpet and cushion. Water may have wicked up the walls but no more than 24 inches. After

Extraction, moisture remains in structural materials such as plywood, framing, etc.


CLASS 3 WATER has the fastest rate of evaporation, typically, water originates from overhead, damaging ceilings, walls, insulation and floor coverings. All or the majority of the room is affected. Excessive moisture content in walls can be measured above 24 inches. Although typically it comes from overhead, a class 3 can also come from ground level. If all other factors are present.


CLASS 4 WATER is Specialty drying which involves materials with very low permeance, such as hardwood floors, concrete, brick, concrete, sub-floor and Areas with heavy saturation which will require very low specific humidity in order to accomplish proper removal of bound water and special areas such as crawl spaces.

When working with insurance adjusters and other industry professional it is best to describe the loss in terms of category 1, class 2 water loss, instead of water came from a broken incoming water line. But it was found quickly and only affected one room. The carpet and pad is wet, but we got to it soon enough that the water only wicked up the walls six (6) inches.



In order to ensure full completion of a water restoration job. We must first understand the principles of a balance drying system so we can ensure complete restoration.



A balance drying has been achieved when the dehumidification is equal to (or greater than) the rate of evaporation from the structure water and.  Extraction and protection of contents speed up the drying from structure / content.



Excess water removal can be accomplished by many methods it may be as simple as wiping or mopping water from hard surfaces. Restoration technician are not usually called to perform extraction unless the amount of water dictates the use of professional equipment. Thorough extraction is necessary in order to contain the migrating water, remove excess water and speed up drying process extraction and protection of contents when restoring water-damaged carpet in order to decrease drying time, reduce the possibility of rust stains and protect furniture stains.



Evaporation is the process of water changing from a liquid to a gas/vapor. One of the goals of a balance drying system is to increase (maximize) the rate of evaporation from structure and contents.






Proper control and monitoring of temperature is a key factor in the balanced drying system. Temperature plays a crucial role in the science of psychometry, which will be discussed later. It is important to know that warm air holds more moisture than cool air. As moisture evaporates from a wet surface, its surface becomes cooler. This n effective is called evaporative cooling. This can create condensation on the surface, and thus impede BALANCED DRYING.



Psychometry is the study of the relationship between air, humidity (relative and specific), will help us take control of the environment (through various means) and create a situation where a balance drying system will exist. More efficient and effective drying can be accomplished when technicians understanding the relationship between humidity airflow and temperature (the drying HAT) without an understanding of Psychometry, it is impossible to do so. We are going to take this step and on each block build on each block until. We have reached a level of understanding that will enable us to design an effective drying program in every drying challenge we will face.



Water Damage Benefits


“Helping insurance professionals improve customer retention and reduces loose ration”

Water Damage- The benefits of advanced Drying Procedure’s

In the past, contractors had few options available to them when performing equipment was limited in its availability, variety, efficiency, and effectiveness. Mitigating. Damage and restoring structures to a pre-loss condition often proved ineffective. A common and accepted practice among contractors was simply to remove and discard damaged carpet, padding, and drywall. Of course, that required installing new replacements, resulting in additional l cost and time for insurers, Contractors and homeowners.

Today, the science of drying has improved significantly. Water-damaged carpeting, pads, and drywall often can be completely restored instead of replaced-sometimes in better condition than they were in prior to the damage.

Powerful Moisture Extraction techniques

Today’s powerful; extraction equipment is far more effective at removing moisture than wet/dry vacuums –a common practice used for moisture removal in times past. In fact, many tests have proven that with today’s extraction equipment, water can be extracted through carpeting, leaving the underlying pad slightly moist, but not wet todays highly efficient. Today’s highly efficient techniques keep repair costs down and drying times to a minimum. This means that all of the costs related to the former method can be avoided, such as:

• Turning back and/ or removing carpet

• Removing, discarding, and replacing the pad

• Replacing new carpet or relaying the old

• Long-term disruption for the homeowner

Quicker drying also means less time for mold or other fungi to develop or colonize. This helps alleviate possible health problems (including respiratory discomfort and allergic reactions) that occur as a result. Organic decay caused by fungi and mildew can weaken structural materials such as drywall and wood framing to the point that they must be replaced quick drying, through the use of advanced dehumidification system’s, robs these harmful agents of moisture-a primary requirement for their growth. With little or no moisture present, mold and mildew either do not start or die very quickly.


Another benefit of rapid moisture removal is the prevention of irreversible swelling in porous materials such as paper and d, shrinking in some fabrics (such as upholstery and drapes), metal rusting (doorknobs and hinges), and electronic equipment that could fail with high levels of humidity


Using modern, state-of –the-art equipment returns a structure and its contents to a pre-damaged condition as quickly as possible.

LGR dehumidifiers

A restoration professional will us a  low grain refrigerant (LGR) Dehumidifiers to reduce relative humidity to as low as 15%, removing up to 15 gallons of water from the air per day of operation older dehumidifiers struggled to reduce relative humidity, pulling perhaps  to 40% 5 gallons of moisture from the air per day. This disparity represents a vast improvement in efficiency, resulting in faster drying times (24 to 48 hours as opposed) to four or more with other methods).


In the right setting, a restoration professional will turn to a desiccant Dehumidifiers. Desiccants use materials such as silica gel that absorbs moisture from air desiccant dehumidifiers generate extremely dry air (down to 5%) and very warm temperatures (up to 100F). when necessary, they operate very effectively, even if the environment is below freezing. New technology allows these units to operate using standard household 110-volt circuits-making their use appropriate for residential, as well as commercial settings.

Forced Air

Another of moisture-eliminating equipment that a professional will employ dries the inside of walls without removing drywall. In this process, baseboards are removed and small holes are drilled through walls near the base. Air is then forced into the cavity behind the wall.- this dramatically reduces drying time for the wall-often to less than half of what it would take to dry it by other methods . The forced air approach also works for certain types of insulation, again eliminating the need to remove drywall in order to gain access. This method is especially appropriate when water damage originates from above the room being treated in many cases; it is the only way to effectively save the walls.

Experience counts

Knowledgeable restoration contractors invest in the latest equipment and know the most effective and efficient ways to remove moisture and dry structures and contents. That means the home is returned to a pre-damaged state more quickly minimizing all related costs and inconvenience, along with any additional living expenses for the insurance company and homeowner


Christian Ready Inc.

985 Albatross Ave

Yuba City, CA 95991

Telephone 530-751-3821 fax 53-671-7922





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