A good number of people are aware that wood and water are entirely incompatible. When woods are in contact with water, they can be permanently be destroyed because the wood will absorb water via its pores leading to the warping and change of color. Therefore, if you have experienced floods or water damage or water has spilt on your hardwood flooring, you are expected to remove the moisture and dry your floor within the shortest time possible. The faster you take action, the less chance your hardwood has to be destroyed. When the hardwood gets into contact for long with water, there will be the worst experience ever. You may be in place to save the wood if only you remove the water from your hardwood floor and dry them using a proper way. Precautions will save you from the cost and hassle of ripping up and hauling away hardwood and also purchasing new wood and installation. Refinishing hardwood is way more expensive compared to replacing it.
Hardwood floors can withstand water in some cases and fail to in other cases. Water may ultimately damage hardwood flooring to an extend of being replaced, and in other instances, it may not have any impact on the hardwood; therefore, no need for repair. Four key factors contribute to how a protected hardwood floor is from water. It all depends on your response time, the type of wood, the level of damage and amount of moisture.
- How fast you should respond– Homeowners usually have a chance to save their floors from water if they act so quickly. If it stays undiscovered for an extended period, it becomes more complicated during restoration.
- Kind of wood available– Various woods are very susceptible to water damage compared to others. You should think of having engineered wood, or laminate flooring.
- The quantity of water or moisture– All kinds of woods can manage a particular amount of moisture, and if happens to be more than that, it may call for concern.
- Level of damage does not mean that any time there is water damage you have to replace your wood floor. In many cases, only severe damages will lead to the replacement of the floor.
After experiencing floods, recovering your hardwood floor may be tough to go back to its normal state. It always needs a professional’s services from a good restoration company; it raises the possibilities of saving your hardwood floor. When you fail to protect your hardwood floor from excess humidity and spill water many times, this could lead to irreparable damages and loss of your hardwood floor. There are several damages that water can cause when they come in contact with your hardwood floor. The damage might either be major or minor. Immediately you identify the damage on your hardwood floor; you have to check the leading cause of the issue and be fast to act to avoid further damages.
- Minor damage– Your hardwood being discolored or have white stains is a sign of minor damage. The issue can be easily managed by maintaining the floor’s dryness and buffing the wood surfaces using toothpaste or automotive polish.
- Severe damage– this may have resulted from the storm or busted pipe. Severe destruction may be apparent and need immediate action and restoration to do away with forever damage. This can be characterized by wet baseboard and drywall, squishy boards, and pooled water. Always dry out the place or lookout for a professional as soon as you can to work on the issue.
- Growth of mold– molds are hazardous to human wellbeing. It can result in breathing difficulties and allergic reactions when you contact it or breathe in the spores. If you discover any sign of mold and mildew pores on your hardwoods, you will be expected to remove the wax finish and treat your floor using hot water and oxalic acid crystals to kill the mold. You can opt to scrub your wooden floor using baking soda solution to do away with the old. After treating the decay, dry, stain, and seal the place, you can book a professional contractor to ensure your wood floor is well treated.
- Subfloors are found below your hardwood flooring’s decorative finish and are mostly designed from pine in older homes plywood in newer homes. Water can penetrate through into subfloors, including cracking, popping, cupping boards, and too much mold growth. Remove your damaged floor material, mend the leak, dry out the place and replace the new plywood. You can as well hire a professional to treat the damages of the subfloor correctly.
There are several ways of protecting your hardwood from being damaged by water including:
- Make good use of the mats- this is among the easiest and best ways of protecting your hardwood flooring from being affected by water. You are expected to use the mats by laying them down all over the house. Put the mats at the entrance f your home to keep away the wet, muddy shoes from penetrating onto your floor. Use the mats at any sink bottom to protect the splashing water from hardwood. The mats can also be used under the water bowl in case you have any pet. This becomes more efficient when you do not work from home; a pet may knock down the bowl, causing water leakage onto the hardwood floor.
- Maintenance- You can engage in several things around your houses to assist in protecting the hardwood floor. Always ensure that your pipes are crack free by frequently checking on them. This will enable you to prevent any unexpected flooding that could lead to severe damage to your floor. You can also practice maintenance by sealing your hardwood during the installation period. This will encourage a long-lasting hardwood floor and protection against dangerous materials and moisture.
- Clean it up- apart from cleaning up spills instantly as they happen; there are some cleaning tips to have in mind if you care about moisture damaging your hardwood floor.
After what period does water take to damage wood floors?
The period it takes for a hardwood floor to be damaged depends on the location of water damage. The top of the board is always treated to help in avoiding issues with small spills. A large amount of water will penetrate in between the boards and get underneath. The areas that are untreated on the boards will expand due to water absorption. Hardwood floor starts absorbing water immediately it comes into contact with it. There is no wood flooring that is waterproof but engineered hardwood and bamboo come closest. Their chances of warping from humidity or spills are meagre.
What results in hardwood floor water damage?
Hardwood floor water damage is resulted from the floor absorbing too much moisture. In most cases, water damage happens over time when problems such as plumbing leaks, foundation and structural leak damage, and extreme temperatures are not adequately addressed. The Hardwood floors become damaged when they stay wet for so long and do not have enough time to dry out.
- Plumbing leaks happen when there is a puncture, corrosion, or damage in the pipes or fitting that allows water to penetrate. Plumbing leaks can occur with water sources such as households’ pipes, appliances like washing machines, and dishwashers. In most cases, many leaks take place because of the devices in a home. You should always do time to time inspections of appliances that use water for you to discover any possibility of leakage.
- Foundation and structural leaks and damage: Water that penetrates through a foundation or structural leak can lead to an immense destruction level within a short time. The damage is likely to be experienced after and before floods when the home’s place is not dried and drained immediately.
Hardwood water absorption can result from several things; it may have resulted from floods caused by rain, leaking pipes, ice damming, overflow of a toilet, leaking roof, hurricanes, and many others. When there is an absorption of water by the hardwoods, they start to expand and end up warping. The wood flooring sides swell and rise higher than the boards’ centre, resulting in uneven surfaces. Always be aware that even if the water is on top of the wood finish, it often spreads via the crack between the planks or absorbed by the plywood sub-floor underneath the hardwood. If there is engineered hardwood, water can penetrate via planks and make the glue lose under, making the floor begin popping up as they expand. You experience water damage, always remove water faster and dry the bases to save your hardwoods from being destroyed and moulds from growing, which can be very expensive to resolve. Water is a great enemy of hardwood flooring because of its porous nature; moisture can be absorbed quickly into the material.
Water damage has become the top fear of homeowners worldwide since it affects almost everything in homes. The period it takes for water to damage wood floors varies depending on the location of water damage. Boards tops are always treated to avoid this, especially when dealing with a small spill. In contrastingly, a large amount of water will penetrate between the board and get below. The untreated areas on the board will absorb water and increase in size. Fortunately, there are several ways of reducing the damages to your wood floor. If your roof is leaking or your pipes have busted, there are manners of mitigating the harm caused and prevent damage to your hardwood floor.
What are the signs of water damage on hardwood floors
It may be challenging for you to tell which hardwood floor is damaged by water because of the color and lack of structure difference. You can sometimes fail to realize water damage in hardwood floors. Immediately you discover that there may be something off about your hardwood floor, the damage has already occurred. Always be cautious and wear protective gears when looking for water damage in hardwood. You need to be aware of signs of water damage in hardwood floors including;
- Water damage can destroy your hardwood floor in different ways depending on the type of wood and the layout.
- Hardwood floors destroyed by water can either be restored at home or by a professional.