When your hardwood floors get flooded, it can be a stressful and overwhelming situation. Water can cause significant damage to hardwood floors if it’s not addressed quickly and correctly. But, don’t worry, there are steps you can take to mitigate the damage and restore your hardwood floors to their former glory. In this article, we’ll discuss what to do when your hardwood floors get flooded.
Step 1: Turn off the power and gas
If your hardwood floors are flooded, the first thing you should do is turn off the power and gas to the affected area. Water and electricity don’t mix, and it’s essential to prevent any electrical hazards from occurring. Turn off the main circuit breaker and gas valve to ensure everyone’s safety.
Step 2: Identify the source of the water
The next step is to identify the source of the water. If the water is coming from a burst pipe, turn off the main water valve to prevent any further flooding. If the water is from a natural disaster or a sewage backup, contact your local emergency services and follow their instructions.
Step 3: Remove the water
After identifying the source of the water, it’s time to remove the water from the hardwood floors. Use a wet/dry vacuum or a mop and bucket to remove as much water as possible. If the water is more than a few inches deep, consider renting a pump to remove it more efficiently.
Step 4: Dry the hardwood floors
Once you’ve removed the water, it’s crucial to dry the hardwood floors as quickly as possible. Use fans and dehumidifiers to circulate air and remove moisture from the hardwood floors. Open windows and doors to increase ventilation and promote air circulation.
Step 5: Inspect the damage
Inspect the hardwood floors for any signs of damage. Look for warping, buckling, or cupping. If you notice any of these signs, you may need to replace the affected boards or planks. Additionally, if the water has been sitting for an extended period, it can cause mold growth. If you notice any mold, it’s essential to contact a professional restoration company to safely remove it.
Step 6: Sand and refinish the hardwood floors
After the hardwood floors have completely dried, it’s time to sand and refinish them. Sanding removes any imperfections and smooths the surface of the hardwood floors. Refinishing adds a protective layer to the hardwood floors, making them more resistant to water damage in the future.
Here are some additional tips to keep in mind when dealing with flooded hardwood floors:
- Act quickly: Time is of the essence when it comes to water damage. The longer you wait to address the issue, the more damage it can cause. It’s crucial to act quickly and take the necessary steps to mitigate the damage.
- Use absorbent materials: To remove as much water as possible from the hardwood floors, use absorbent materials such as towels or rags. Place them on the affected area and press down firmly to absorb as much water as possible.
- Don’t use heat: It may be tempting to use heat to dry the hardwood floors quickly, but it can actually cause more damage. Heat can cause the wood to warp or buckle, which can be difficult to repair.
- Keep an eye on the humidity: After the water has been removed and the hardwood floors have been dried, it’s important to keep an eye on the humidity levels in the room. If the humidity is too high, it can cause further damage to the hardwood floors.
- Prevent future water damage: Once the hardwood floors have been restored, take steps to prevent future water damage. For example, install a sump pump, fix any leaks or plumbing issues, and avoid placing plants or other water sources directly on the hardwood floors.
In conclusion, when your hardwood floors get flooded, it’s essential to act quickly to mitigate the damage. Turn off the power and gas, identify the source of the water, remove the water, dry the hardwood floors, inspect for damage, and sand and refinish the hardwood floors. Remember, if you’re unsure of how to proceed, don’t hesitate to contact a professional restoration company for assistance.