What to Do With Water-Damaged Hardwood Floors

Discovering a flood in your home is never fun, whether it occurred because of a natural disaster, a burst pipe or a leak in your refrigerator water supply. While your first thoughts may be about your family’s safety, you will quickly switch gears to figuring out what to do with water-damaged hardwood flooring.

You can preserve your flooring in some cases. Your priority should be making your home safe for everyone who lives there, and treating your hardwood floors is one way to do that.

How Long Does It Take for Water to Damage Wood Floors?

It takes some time for water damage to occur to wood floors. Dropping a glass of water on the floor, for example, won’t cause any long-lasting problems. The issues arise when the water sits for an extended period, especially if the water covers the floor’s entire surface. Then it’s more likely to break down the wood. Signs of water damage may include:

  • Warps or bumps in the floor.
  • Dark staining on the edge of a plank.
  • Moldy smells.
  • Rusting where nails are visible on the edge of the board.

Removing Water From a Hardwood Floor

Calling in a professional is the only way to remove water from your hardwood floor thoroughly. But you can take a few initial steps to get rid of water sitting on the floor to avoid further damage. First, wipe up any moisture you see with absorbent towels. Remove all wet rugs and other objects that can make stains on the floor.

Move furniture to another room, and find a wet vacuum to remove the water you can’t absorb with the towel. Run the wet vac several times. You may not be able to see the water, but it could still be sitting on the surface. Once you remove everything you can, put a dehumidifier in the center of the room to get rid of any additional moisture.

Can Water-Damaged Wood Floors Be Refinished?

You can refinish water-damaged flooring after flooding. A professional can advise you on your options because they depend on how much damage your property sustained, but here are some ways you may repair the damage:

  • Allow the flooring to dry out. You may use industrial-strength fans to speed up the process and ensure the floor is fully dry before you attempt any repairs.
  • Remove the top of the hardwood floor, about 1/4 inch, by sanding the surface. You want to smooth away any stains or imperfections.
  • Apply a new stain to the wood. You may want to choose a darker stain to cover any remaining flaws.

If the damage is really bad in a particular area, you can also replace individual planks, retrofitting them to the floor.

Start With Professional Water Removal Services

If you need water damage restoration and extraction service in Chicago, contact ServiceMaster of Lincoln Park today. Our experienced team can assist you through this challenging period, offering the expert insights and advice you need and then tackling the big job. Call us today at 773-346-6767 to schedule an appointment.

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