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What Happens When Hardwood Floors Suffer From Water Damage

Jan 24

Even water-resistant, hardwood floors suffer water damage at some time or another. Water seeping into wood can cause it to swell and buckle, or warp - making water damage the worst kind of damage for hardwood flooring. There are three basic types of water damage that can affect wood: water saturation, water infiltration, and water stagnation. Let's take a look at each of these water problems, as well as what you should do if your hardwood floors are suffering from this type of property disaster.

Water Saturation

Hardwood flooring is resistant to water saturation because the moisture simply sits on top of its surface without penetrating it. This allows any existing finish on your wood floor to protect it from absorbing too much water, with water eventually evaporating, leaving no long-term damage. This water spills over from high water tables, floods or other water disasters.

Water Infiltration

When water begins to soak into your hardwood flooring it becomes a more serious matter requiring immediate attention. Water infiltration can be caused by small gaps where water may seep through cracks in your subfloor, as well as around the edges of stair treads and door casings where water could have settled after flooding or rainstorms. These are just some of the most common types of water problems that can cause water infiltration - there are various reasons it could happen at any time! What is important is identifying wet areas quickly so that you can fix them before they cause further damage.

Water Stagnation

This water damage is the most dangerous of all. It's caused by water that has been unable to dry or evaporate due to a wide variety of conditions such as water pressure, temperature, and the amount of water present. Water stagnation can cause warping, swelling and buckling of your hardwood flooring – making water-resistant floors water-damaged floors! If you see these kinds of problems on your wood flooring, don't hesitate - call a water damage restoration specialist immediately.

Water Damage Cleanup and Repair is Best Handled By Certified Pros

If any area on your hardwood flooring shows evidence of water seeping into it… or if there are wet patches anywhere… or if water soaked up for any reason does not evaporate within a day or two, water damage in your hardwood flooring is a serious problem that should be handled by water damage restoration specialists.

Wood Flooring is Expensive and can Cost $5 to $25 a Square Foot for Replacement

If water damage has caused water to soak into or seep into the hardwood flooring, water-resistant hardwoods such as oak and maple can swell and buckle due to water saturation. Floorboards may even warp in severe cases. As a result, repairs for water-damaged hardwood floors aren't always easy, quick fixes - they are often expensive!

A replacement of warped or buckled wood flooring in a 20' x 30' room with 8" oak strips costs between $10,000 and $25,000 from most hardwood dealers. In some cases, it's more economic just to replace the damaged area completely when water damages the surface finish of your wood flooring. Replacing complete sections can cost around $10,000 to $15,000.

"Continued water saturation leads not only to water damage in hardwood flooring but also to mold build-up and musty odors it creates," says water restoration pro-Jeff Williams of Service Pros of Fort Lauderdale. "For this reason, you should never attempt water damage cleanup or water removal on your own because water that remains for an extended period of time can create a breeding ground for harmful microorganisms."

Water Damage Restoration is the Best Option if You Suspect Water Damage

If water stains are found on hardwood floors anywhere - whether it's from flooding, basement leaks or broken pipes - water restoration specialists should be called. This will prevent further water damage to wood flooring by stopping the potential of damage and mold growth early.