Hardwood floors can be one of the most beautiful parts of your home, but they aren’t without the need for care and maintenance. One common problem with hardwood floors is warping. Warped floors are usually caused by water damage. Any time wood comes into contact with water there is the potential for problems, and this is made significantly worse by time. The longer the wood is exposed to water, the worse the problem. Sometimes plumbing problems are to blame, other times it can simply be a spill gone unnoticed. Regardless of how it happens, warped floor boards need attention and the sooner the better.
The first thing to address is making sure the source of the water is taken care of. After any plumbing issues like leaks are addressed, it is time to deal with the damage. Removing some boards in order to make sure the subfloor is totally dry is the next step. Running some fans in the area of the damage is a good idea to ensure that the moisture is completely evaporated. Any residual moisture can cause more damage and can even lead to serious health threats like mold. Once the area is one-hundred percent dry, patch the area with some new planks. Finally, sand the area and refinish it.
Even for the experienced DIY-er, hiring a professional contractor for this job is a good idea. Pros have tools like moisture meters and will be be able to better assess the situation. The patch job will also be nearly impossible to detect from the rest of the flooring, something pretty tough for the amateur to do. When looking to hire such a pro, it is wise to only consider licensed and bonded contractors. You should interview at least a few and check into their references. Refer to our articles on how to find a flooring contractor and questions to ask when interviewing.
The cost of this kind of repair varies depending on the extent of the damage, but luckily homeowner’s insurance will often cover this kind of accidental water damage. Even if your policy doesn’t cover it, dealing with warped floorboards is worth the cost. Warped floors not only look bad, but they also are potentially dangerous.
If you notice seasonal swelling or warping of your floorboards, humidity is the likely culprit. The best way to deal with this is to keep your indoor humidity level stable. Invest in a dehumidifier and use it regularly in the summer months. Making sure you have properly sealed your hardwood floors can also help significantly with seasonal warping due to humidity.
For more information on floor board warping and other moisture related issues reach out in the comment form below. We will often answer questions directly and sometimes even write articles centered on the subject.