A lot of thought goes into the selection of the flooring for the house. Some things which play a major role in its selection are quality, longevity, durability, aesthetics etc.
Hence seeing it getting damaged from water, which is a mandatory need in every house, can be quite difficult to comprehend.
But there are ways and means by which water damage to floor boards and tiles can be prevented and the tiles recovered if they are not extensively damaged by water. The only way to undo extensive water damage caused to floor boards and tiles is by replacing them with new ones.
Even though hardwood floor are most vulnerable to damage by water, other floorboards to suffer varying degree of damage due to the ravages of water. In fact the subfloor getting damaged due to the seepage of water is probably the worst form of water damage since it takes a lot of time and money to repair the same. Some ways which when adopted can save the floor from water damage or even minimise its impact are:
- Immediate cleaning of water spills prevents further seepage of the same.
- Sinks, toilets, dishwashers, washing machines and other gadgets which need running water directly from taps needs to be regularly checked for leaks and repair work needs to be immediately undertaken.
- Water leaks like flooding, damp etc., should be taken care of immediately to prevent them from spreading and causing extensive harm.
- Grouts between tiles and floor planks should be redone atleast once every year to prevent water seepage through holes and cracks in the same.
But in case water damage has already taken place, different types of flooring methods need different types of handling like for example:
- Carpets: Water spills on a carpet should be absorbed and removed almost immediately. Rubbing spreads the damage and should be avoided. Also the carpet needs to be thoroughly dried and given a good vacuuming to ensure there is no growth of bacteria, molds etc.
- Vinyl or linoleum: Simple removal of the spillage will ensure there is no damage or minimal damage caused but if the subfloor is water damaged too, then that particular tile needs to be removed.
- Hardwood floors: The wooden tiles and planks need to be dried immediately to prevent them from swelling and buckling. Professional help is the best way to undo harm caused by water since the boards and tiles might need to be removed and dried along with the subfloor before any further repairs can be taken up.
- Stone floors: They are generally not prone to water damage unless the grouting between tiles has weakened over a period of time with use. This grouting, when redone, solves the problem.
Water damage to subfloors is difficult to manage since the whole surface floor needs to be removed. Then the subfloor needs to be given time to dry by keeping all the doors and windows open. Care should be taken than repairs can only be done after the complete drying of the subfloor.
Water is a basic need without which life cannot survive and hence there is a constant usage of the same within homes and houses. Special care thus needs to be taken to ensure that floor damages do not occur due to the spillage or leakage of the same.