hardwood flooring

What to do if your hardwood flooring gets wet

First, don?t panic, but do act quickly.

Hardwood, especially solid, can be damaged by excess water and humidity. Although it can last for years, sometimes up to 100, it does need to be taken care of properly, which is as easy as wiping spills immediately. This hardwood can be damaged by water, so it?s somewhat limited as to where it can be installed, such as never in bathrooms, known as the wettest room in the house, or basements.

It also expands and shrinks to adjust to weather conditions, so ask your flooring expert about the easy acclimation process.

Engineered hardwood has a more stable construction and, while it?s not waterproof, it can handle liquid better. As a result, it can be installed in some places where solid can?t, such as below-grade areas, like basements. Wipe spills immediately, never submerge it in water, and don?t install in the bathroom.

If your hardwood gets wet
You don?t have to live in a subtropical climate to experience a flood. We?re sure the people in the northeast were surprised by Tropical Storm/Hurricane Sandy back in 2012.

Also, know that we create plenty of water and moisture right in our homes: Leaking and bursting pipes; broken chimney flashing; missing roof shingles and corroded washing machine hoses can do it, as well as everyday activities such as cooking.

If your hardwood gets wet:

?Remove any wet towels, rugs, or accessories from the area.
?Dry the floor with towels as much as possible.
?Wipe the surface with disinfectant, to be sure no bacteria is present.
?Use fans, dehumidifiers and, if the weather permits, keep the windows open.
?Call an expert to inspect, since water sometimes ?hides? under planks or between joists.

Prevention is better than treatment, so placemats or area rugs strategically in front of sinks, at entrances and anywhere there might be wet, muddy feet. If you have a pet, it might be a good idea to make a little place setting so the plastic mat, not the floor, catches drips.
Some decks face dining and/or living rooms. If yours does, and especially if you have a pool, make sure soggy towels aren?t placed on the floor and that wet feet are wiped off before entering.

For more information, come into the Carpet Mart showroom in Benton Harbor, MI.