Are My Hardwood Floors Ruined After Water Damage
Hardwood floors are tricky and they are vulnerable to becoming water damaged. If your water damage needs to be looked at by a professional due to the size and gravity of the situation, knowing which service & company to rely on might help you save your floors.
There are a few things that factor into whether or not your floors are salvageable. Know them to know if your hardwood floors can be dried in place.
Water damage can be devastating to hardwood floors and if the job is not done quickly or is done inadequately your floors may need to be replaced.
1. Response Time
Mold can grow in as little as 48-72 hours on almost all household material if the moisture level is 16% or higher. Be quick to call a professional to help dont put it off until later.
2. Type of Wood
Not all wood is created equal and it is important that you do not confuse laminate floors with the real thing. Laminate floors are even more vulnerable to damage and there is little that can be done to help solve the warped moldy mess that has been created by water damage.
3. Amount of Moisture
It is normal for there to be moisture present in hardwood floors. Normal levels of moisture in hardwood floors fluctuates up to 12%. However, a flood can bring those levels to a whopping 40% or higher! When this happens there needs to be some sort of intervention and the best thing youll do is call a professional to handle it.
4. Degree of Damage
Causes Of Black Mold Growth
In order for mold to grow on any surface, but especially wood, moisture must be present. In homes and other buildings, moisture build up can be caused by many different things. If you have a large household, you have a better chance of finding the black fungus when we breath we give off moisture. Additionally, hot showers and even cooking can contribute to the moisture-level in homes. However, moisture build-up can also occur from certain malfunctions in your home. Black mold can show up after youve had a leaky roof or pipes as any moisture that is trapped can turn into black mold.
Preventing Carpet Mold Growth
Water damage to carpets never happens on a schedule that fits your busy timetable. When affected areas stay wet for more than 24 hours, mold quickly takes hold, and that makes DIY strategies less effective. Standing water saturates carpet padding, underlayment, sub-flooring and baseboards, so its very difficult to completely dry things out with conventional methods.
Before starting the cleanup process, take a realistic assessment of your carpets water damage. You can save time and hard work by calling in a professional service. A restoration contractor uses heavy-duty equipment to quickly remove water, completely dry affected areas and immediately address mold growth. Expert water extraction and mold remediation can also save the expense of replacing water-damaged carpets.
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Tip : Make Sure Your Bath Fan Is Big Enough
The next thing to consider for how to prevent mold after water damage is whether your bath fan is big enough. If the fans arent clearing out most of the moisture in your bathrooms after five to 10 minutes, your fans may not be moving enough air. Fans are certified by the volume of air exhausted out of the room. To find the recommended fan capacity for your bathroom, multiply the bathroom square footage by 1.1 . Check the cfm volume of your fan, usually marked on a label under the grille. Replace it with a larger model if its too small for the size of your bathroom. Heres what to do if you spot mold on your bathroom walls.
What Are The Signs Of Mold Under Hardwood Floors
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S To Prevent Mold Growth
Weather the water damage is the result of a storm surge or a leaky faucet, when water is trapped behind walls or paneling, the elements needed for mold growth will most likely be present. It is best to take action at this time to mitigate the damage and prevent mold growth from occuring.
Dry areas immediately. Try to clean and dry areas subjected to water within 48 hours to help prevent mold growth.
Be aware or warning signs. After cleaning and drying, continue to be sensitive to musty odors in the affected area.
Take look outside. Check the exterior of homes and buildings regularly for accumulating ground water. When the ground is saturated mold can begin to form outside and find its way inside. If water is accumulating against your foundation, take measures to drain the water away from your building. Keeping things dry is the key to preventing mold growth.
Remove damaged materials. If materials are wet and cant be cleaned or completely dried, remove them from the building and replace them with new materials which may be more mold resistant. Fiber glass doesnt have the food needed for mold growth but often when insulation gets wet, the water which intruded into the cavity was dirty and brought food along with it. If you have wet insulation, replace it with new mold resistant insulation.
How Do You Get Rid Of Mold On Mulch
There are a few different ways to get rid of mold on mulch if it is bothering you, including:
- Drying it out
- Treating it with vinegar
- Digging it up and disposing of it
By the way, you can avoid mold and decomposition of wood mulch by using cedar mulch, which resists rotting.
However, you might already have mold on your existing mulch. In that case, lets look at mold removal methods in a little more detail.
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Best Moisture Meter For Hardwood Floors
The General Tools MMD950 Moisture Meter is a pin and pinless deep sensing moisture meter which gives you the option of using pins in direct contact with a surface or using a spherical pinless sensor for a more versatile means of measuring. The meter specializes in detecting moisture content in subfloors and underneath wood flooring.
Why Mold Removal From Wood Is Harder Than You Think
Mold is a nagging problem that we all encounter in our homes frequently, however clean we are. It quietly sneaks in and, if humidity is present, combines with it to create a problem that requires urgent attention. Wood attracts molds because of its porous nature. The water it absorbs provides the perfect environment for breeding mold.
Removing mold from wood is not easy – and can take longer to get rid of. And It is considered more challenging because:
Wood is porous, meaning all removal of spores is challenging. It involves a long process, which makes the elimination dangerous when inhaled. Inadequate removal will cause it to spread further. Using the wrong solutions will only scratch the surface but not completely clear it.
You may attempt to remove them yourself but if it becomes problematic and resistant, enlist a professional like AdvantaClean. They will address the root cause of the problem and ensure your home is mold-free.
How To Remove Mold From Wood Floors
How To Get Rid Of Mold In Basement Easily: Easy 7
Remove all the severely damaged areas, then use a cleaning agent to kill the fungus. This method is how to get rid of mold in basement settings.
Mold can be a pain it looks ugly, smells terrible, and can even be harmful to your health! You need to remove every trace of it once you have an infestation.
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How To Use Cleaning Vinegar
Cleaning vinegar can be used undiluted or mixed with water, depending on the job. For tough stains on fabric furniture or clothes, use cleaning vinegar alone on a sponge or rag to wipe away the spot. Undiluted cleaning vinegar can irritate your skin or nails, though, so be sure to wear gloves.
For everyday cleaning jobs, diluted cleaning vinegar will get the job done. Make an all-purpose cleaner by combining two-parts cleaning vinegar and one-part water in a spray bottle. If you dont like the smell of vinegar, you can add a few drops of your favorite essential oil. This DIY cleaner is great for countertops, sinks, bathrooms, stainless steel appliances, and even windows. If you have an extra dirty job to tackle, like a greasy stove top, use the same spray bottle solution but add one tablespoon of dish soap for extra cleaning power then shake to combine.
What Is Increasing Your Chances Of Mold Growth
Untreated or water that is left to soak into the wood planks can cause mold growth. It can become a serious health hazard for anyone living in the house or walking around in that environment, especially crawling children, pets and the elderly.
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Does A Dehumidifier Help With Mold On Wood
As mold readily spreads in consistently high humidity environments on porous, organic materials and wood areas or furniture, using a dehumidifier may help control indoor humidity and prevent mold.
Ensure to properly clean and maintain a dehumidifying appliance to prevent mold growth inside it, as is known to sometimes occur.
Keep Your Greenhouse Clean
Maintaining proper moisture levels and air circulation inyour greenhouse is important for preventing mold. Once you have done this, it is time to comeup with a plan for keeping the greenhouse clean, including tools of the trade and the structure itself .
Sterilize Pots, Containers, and Tools
To keep mold at bay, you should have a regular cleaning schedule for any tools you use in the greenhouse.
Even if you dont see any mold growing, it is important to clean to get rid of any mold spores that are waiting for the right time to start a new colony. Start by sterilizing your pots and containers.
First, empty out the soil and plant matter from the pots. You can add the soil and plant matter to your compost pile and reuse it next year.
Next, rinse off the soil from the pots, and use a rag towash them with soap and water. Rinse thesoap off of the pots.
Then, soak the pots in a solution of water and vinegar to kill any mold.
Finally, rinse the pots off with clean water and let themdry. Store them in a clean, dry placefor next year.
You may also want to sterilize your gardening tools, such aspruning shears, on a regular basis. Tosterilize your tools, use a clean rag and some rubbing alcohol to wipe themdown and kill any pathogens.
This will prevent the spread of diseases between plants, anda healthy plant is more likely to resist mold growth.
Clean Surfaces between Seasons
To clean the surfaces in your greenhouse:
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How To Remove Mold From Wood
Mold commonly grows on wooden surfaces, as wood is very good at absorbing water. Add to this moisture warm temperatures and mold spores , and its the perfect storm for a mold infestation. Read our guide to learn how to easily remove mold from wood.
The good news is that if the affected area is no larger than ten square feet and you arent dealing with toxic black mold, you can eliminate the mold yourself using everyday household cleaners. But dont delayholding off on this project will give the mold colony a chance to expand, and prolonged exposure can be bad for your health.
What if youre dealing with black mold? It can be difficult to distinguish toxic black mold from other species that are black in color, so its best to call in a professional in this situation. Toxic black mold is particularly harmful when inhaled, so you shouldnt touch it.
How To Clean Mold Off Wood
The Spruce / Georgia Lloyd
The most common type of mold found in homes is mildew. Mildew is a surface mold that grows in warm, damp places like basements, laundry rooms, and shady porches. Mildew begins as a gray or white powdery colony and eventually turns black or brown. To test if the wood is covered with mildew or just dirt, dab the stain with a cotton swab dipped in household chlorine bleach. If the stain lightens or disappears after two or three minutes, it’s mildew. If not, it’s probably just dirt.
Mildew can discolor and slowly harm wood surfaces but there are much more dangerous molds that can damage the structure of your home. If a fuzzy or slimy black or green mold is visible and the drywall or wood underneath is soft or crumbles, there is irreversible rot and the damaged surfaces must be removed immediately.
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How Do You Clean Old Weathered Wood
If you have old weathered wood, you must consider cleaning it before reusing it. You have to clean because the wood has been taking a beating from different elements while it was not in use.
First, give the wood some time to dry even if it has not rained for the previous couple of days.
Drying will help to kill molds that might have grown on the wood while you had abandoned it. Depending on the condition of your weathered wood, you may want to start by hosing it down to get rid of bugs, mud, old sap, and other residues before cleaning.
After this, give it some time to fully dry before you can lightly sand it down to achieve a smooth texture. If you do this, you rest assured of preventing slivers or splinters when cleaning.
Your old weathered wood is now ready for cleaning and sanitizing.
When cleaning, youll want to use a brush and soapy water to scrub down the wood. Alternatively, you may consider using a combination of bleach, detergent, and water.
While cleaning, ensure you have protective clothing to protect yourself from fumes and mold spores. If you realize the wood is not well cleaned, dont hesitate to repeat the process.
Another method of cleaning is by starting with dry scrubbing the surface then cleaning. Doing this will help in breaking down the mildew or mold. Suppose your wood has paint that you dont want to remove. Consider using a tad bit more bleach and scrub lightly.
Heres how to clean reclaimed wood:
Learn How To Prevent Mold After Water Damage
If youve had any water damage to your home after a storm or flooding, you have roughly 24 to 48 hours to prevent the growth of mold and mildew. This Mold can be extremely hazardous to you and your familys health. Its highly important that you start the process of drying out your water damage or you could be left with repairs to your home that are even more time consuming then they already will be.
Not to mention that mold can cause health issues like fever and difficulty breathing. Those with existing health problems such as Asthma are especially susceptible to these issues and should not be anywhere near mold.
If mold begins to grow, the process of getting your home and life back to normal must wait until all the mold is removed and your restoration company is given the OK to get started on the repairs.
Keep in mind that the process of drying out the water damage is not always straightforward and often what appears dry is not. Most moisture is often hidden in the walls and flooring, so its critical to identify and dry all the affected areas to prevent the growth of mold!
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