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In many cases, the signs of potential water damage to a floor are obvious. A pipe bursts underneath your sink. Rain water blows in through a broken window. Your refrigerator springs a leak.
In other cases, however, the signs may not be quite as obvious. You may notice discolorations on hardwood floors, or spongy patches on your linoleum. Your carpets may be damp. Just because you don’t see any standing pools of water doesn’t mean the potential for water damaged floors is any less.
What should you do to prevent further damage to your floors? At what point should you seek the services of a professional flood water damage repair company?
When To Call In the Professionals
The first consideration when dealing with any type of water damage is the source of water that caused the damage. Many homeowners can deal effectively with water damage caused by clean water spills from leaky faucets.
Water damage from contaminated sources, however, such as dishwasher or washing machine overflow may require the services of a flood water damage repair company since this water contains chemical pollutants hazardous to health. Damage caused by sewage line backups, or groundwater overflows from streams or rivers, should always be tackled by professionals.
If the water damage is widespread, affecting more than one room, you should also call a water restoration specialist. Time is of the essence here, since mold spores begin to germinate within 12 hours. You won’t have the luxury of starting in one room and finishing the other room the following day. The wet floors and subfloors must be dried quickly, and this is best accomplished with the help of the sophisticated state of the art equipment that a flood water damage repair company has at its disposal.
Drying Water Damaged Floors
The first step in cleaning your floors after water damage must involve water extraction to remove any standing water from the surfaces. The longer standing water sits on your floors, the greater the damage will be. All excess moisture must be removed from floors and subfloors. All damaged hardwood and tiles must be removed from floors, and the subfloor must be replaced where water has damaged it. Water damaged tiles can generally be cleaned with a mild baking soda and water solution. Throw away any materials like carpet padding that cannot be salvaged.
Fans and other devices that ventilate wet areas with bursts of air can be used to dry wet surfaces. This treatment should be followed by dehumidification to eradicate any additional signs of moisture intrusion. After the area has been dried and dehumidified, it should be treated with a disinfectant to retard potential mold growth.
Restoring Water Damaged Wood Floors
To restore a hardwood floor, first use a leveling compound to make sure your floor remains even. Next, install hardwood flooring that matches the hardwood you were forced to remove in color, thickness and texture. Re-sanding and refinishing the floor will help the replacement wood blend into place.
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