About Water damage and hardwood floors
Water damage is an everyday occurrence for hardwood flooring. Identifying the root issue is your primary goal. Once water issue is located, shut that water supply off immediately! Then get it professionally fixed.
The typical sources for water damage include: The dishwasher, water heater, the water line to the refrigerator, sink or toilet. The less obvious water leaks are slow leaking sliding back doors or windows that won't leak until it rains. If a leaky door or window is the issue, contact a window contractor/manufacturer or general contractor to properly address your concerns. If you are uncertain of the origin of the water leak, common sense would dictate that you check the water source closest to the damaged area.
The problem must be addressed immediately and corrected if you want to avoid looking over your shoulder in the coming months.
Homeowners insurance companies are ripping off their clients
We have found in the recent past that some homeowner insurance companies are implementing a "Hands off" approach with their clients when water damage has occurred. That basically means, in the event of a claim, the home owners insurance company will assign you the title of "General Contractor". Their goal is to get you to professionally assess the problem and then determine who you need to hire to resolve your own problems. Since water damage is not always obvious, a trained professional is needed to detect a slow drip. The slowest type of water leakage can sometimes be the hardest problem to solve. Most people don't have the slightest idea of how to deal with such problems.
Assigning the homeowner as the General Contractor benefits the insurance company in a few ways:
- The "Time" spent detecting and educating yourself about the issue is at your expense.
- The time spent having multiple contractors come to your home is your time. Some people have to take time off work. Now it's time and money.
- At the completion of the repair, the insurance company typically has you sign a release closing the claim leaving you out to dry if someting is missed or reoccurs down the road.
Water damage | Insurance claims | Hardwood floors | your rights
Have your insurance company send a water damage or water restoration company to your home NOW! These companies will typically tear into your walls and floors in an attempt to dry your home asap to avoid MOLD. MOLD begins to develop after about 48 hours after the water issue. That is why you must move now! The tearing into the walls and floor seem excessive, but it is absolutely essential they do this for you and your families health. It's not uncommone that the water damage people use dehumidifiers and water extraction tools to do the clean up. Don't be surprised if it takes a week or more for your home to completely dry.
Next, have the insurance company provide a seasoned General Contractor that has dealt with water damage. A lot of times, an insurance company will send a claims adjuster. These people are absolutely useless until you know what's going on behind the walls and under your floor. It is imperative to get a "Complete assessment" of the damages, including the root issue of the water source. Don't be fooled with a claims adjusters ability to act with authority. These are people who have never done the work and can't see through walls or floors. Have the General Contractor educate you as to what has transpired. At that point, the General Contractor should be able to produce a lined item(s) quote for materials and labor of the total cost of repairs. Without the total cost of materials and repairs needed, you may not get what you have coming to you as far as payout from the insurance company.
If the water damage to your hardwood floors is extensive, you must contact your insurance company as soon as possible.
- The root issue MUST be identified and corrected by a professional plumber prior to any repairs made in the future.
- Secondly, an important reason for contacting your insurance company is that "Mold" starts to set in after the first 48 hours.
- The total cost for "All" the service calls, water damage visit(s), materials and repairs can be very costly. Pay the deductible and move forward with your life.
WARNING: Any repairs made prior to the home being professionally dried is pointless, because the moisture issue must be "Completely" resolved. If not, that residual moisture will ruin the repair work. In other words, the last contractor to show up at your home is not responsible for the prior work executed by another company or contractor.
Water damaged hardwood floors
The floors will typically cup, expand and split (picture on the left). Dark discoloration will eventually follow. This is an indication of rot and or mold.
If the floors experience minimum cupping, a "Sand and finish" of your hardwood floors will correct the damage. This is evident in the "Before & After" water damage pics above.
If the damage is severe, board replacement will be necessary. If the majority of your floor suffered excessive moisture, then the entire floor will probably have to be replaced.
National Floors recommends waiting at least 3 weeks after a professional water damage team has left the property. We care enough to inform you and it would be great if you gave us the chance to fix your hardwood floors. Contact Us