So, you have water damage. You have been forced to face the silent property destroyer that seems bent on stripping you of everything that makes your house habitable. Now your floors have been compromised. You know all about the dangers of water damage to your floors, from unsightly bulging to discolorations and horrible mold growth, to rotten floorboards that give way under pressure and worse, the failure of structure integrity, and you’re wondering if you can get your floors back. Well, I’m glad to tell you that you very much can. With the following steps;
Take off all floor coverings
Your floors are wet, so you must remove all floor coverings. The floors won’t dry properly if wet coverings are still sitting on it. Floor coverings include rugs or carpets and even mats. These must immediately be removed and as they are also wet, they must be cleaned. A wet carpet in your home will only accelerate the speed of mold growth and even quicker destruction to your floors.
Wipe off standing water
Immediately after taking out everything on the floor, it should be wiped off immediately. The longer water stays on floorboards, the more damage it does to the floor, the sub floor and the foundation of the house. You would not be able to get the water that is under the floorboards, but you should wipe off all the water on the surface using a mop or towel. However if it is a situation where the water is excessive. You might need a water pump. You can get a pump at a hardware store if you want to do it yourself although the prices are insane.
Disinfect and scrub wood
After water damage and floods, there is usually a lot of dirt leftover on the floor. Mud and silt would embed themselves into corners and crevices and there are many toxins that could be leftover by the flooding as well. After removing the surface water, get a stiff brush, some mild disinfectant, and detergent, and do a thorough job of cleaning out your floors. Make sure that you do this before the floors are completely dry, so this way, you won’t have to put water on the floor again in order to wash it. After the scrubbing is done, you can hose the floors down if concrete such as basement, and then proceed to wipe off all water remnants. Thus pushing it into a near by drain.
Wet floorboards tend to swell, as they have taken in a lot of water. This causes them to become pressed for space. Remove a few floorboards from your floor, to make the boards more scanty. Not too much, just between five and ten. This would give the boards room to breathe and not press against each other in their swelling. It would also help them to dry faster and not to bulge or crack. Keep in mind if the flooring is hard to match you may have more trouble on your hand than you realize. Water Restoration Professionals such as Dry Effect has specialized equipment to prevent this from happening thus saving your floor. Which could cost you thousands to replace.
The next step is the thorough drying process. You are going to need ventilation and a lot of good air circulations in your home. Open all of your windows when you can if low humidity, and then, get a fan or two to continually blow the floors which you have already made scanty by removing a few. Regular box fans might do, but then these are small and in the case of a large floor expanse would not be of little use. You might then get a large commercial fan. This will increase the speed of your floor drying.
Test to make sure
Wood is very tricky to dry. You might do your best and feel that you no longer feel wetness meanwhile mold is growing beneath the floorboards and popping up between them. Due to this, you must test it before you do the finishing again. To test your floor boards, you are going need a moisture meter. A moisture meter is a hand-held device which professionals use to test the moisture content of surfaces. The moisture content of your floorboards should ideally be within 5 percent of the readings from wood which was not in the water at all.
Give it time
As said, wood is tricky to dry. It very easily guzzles up water, but is too reluctant to give it up. As such, you should be patient with your floorboards. It might take a while to get them back in shape, and it is not ideal to rush the work simply because you don’t want to lose time. The wait is certainly worth buying whole new floorboards due to a little shortcut.
Floorboards are a stubborn part of the home when involved in water damage and are very tricky to save. All of these steps require a steady, trained hand to perform them and Water Damage Restoration companies offer just that. Having everything from the skill and expertise to the heavy machinery, Dry Effect is well equipped to handle your floorboards without struggle.