Your Floors Are Damaged From
Busted Water Pipes: Now What?

If you’ve ever been in this situation before, you know that frozen pipes can be a huge pain. They can also cause plenty of damage to appliances, floors, walls, cabinets, and more if they burst. Water-damaged floors can become very stressful for homeowners. Understanding the extent of the damage will determine what you should do next.

Who can help you if your floors are water-damaged from busted pipes?

You should assess the extent of the damage to your floors. If the damage is minor you may be able to repair it yourself. This also depends on if you have extra flooring material available. Often after a project is complete, flooring companies encourage you to keep 1-2 boxes left over. However, if the damage is extensive or the floor is unstable, it is best to call a reliable flooring company to assess the damage. They have special moisture reading tools to do so.

What is the first thing you should do if your floors are water-damaged?

Drying out the floor will be the first thing you should do if your floors are damaged from a pipe bursting. That usually will require the removal of your existing floor to help the drying processes. When pipes have burst in your home due to cold weather it is probably happening throughout your local area and neighborhood, so acting quickly is definitely important. Calling a company to dry out your floors should be your next step. In some cases, you might need to get your insurance company involved and follow their policy and procedures. Contacting a reputable flooring company first might help you understand the process of fixing your damaged floors, and also be able to advocate for you to your insurance company.

Will your hardwood/laminate floor lay back down after water damage?

Once the hardwood floor has cupped or buckled due to water damage the likelihood of it relaxing and going back to its pre-damaged condition is not going to happen. You may be wondering if you can fix only a small/damaged portion of the floor instead of the whole thing. In some cases replacing a small repair is possible but needs to be reviewed by a reliable flooring company. In most situations the faster you can remove moisture-damaged flooring in your home the safer it is for your family. Flooring companies typically offer this consultation service for free, so definitely call around your local companies to take advantage. If you are in the mid-south, Flooring Solutions offers this service and is happy to come to take a look and advise you on what to do next. Just click the button below.

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What does the process of fixing your floors look like?

When you have damaged flooring due to frozen pipes that burst there are typically several companies that could be involved. First and foremost the pipe that burst must be repaired. In most cases, a licensed plumber can perform that service, such as Smith’s Plumbing. To remove the water and the damaged floor you will want a home water damage restoration company, such as Dryfast. To replace your flooring after drying out and mitigation you can consult with a flooring company. In some cases, the extent of damage is large enough to file a claim with your insurance company which might refer you to a specialized general contractor.

How do you know your floors are water-damaged?

Different flooring types show different signs of water damage. Here is a list of each common floor type and an example of water damage:

    1. Hardwood: Engineered glue down and solid floors react to water damage from frozen pipes by cupping and buckling. You will see wood tent up on the sides. You may see ripples at certain light angles. Discoloration of the wood floors is also a sure way of diagnosing water damage.
    2. Laminate flooring: Water-resistant and traditional laminates are floating floors. When water from a busted pipe hits it, water will work its way underneath the laminate. Laminate will cup and buckle. It can delaminate when it starts to peel at the surface. When you walk on it you will hear the water moving under it.
    3. Luxury vinyl plank (LVP) and Luxury vinyl tile (LVT): This type of floor is sold as waterproof but it too reacts to moisture. In most cases, you will see a slight tenting effect where they lock into other planks. It is also a floating floor and any water from a busted pipe will likely flow underneath the floor. Yes it is waterproof but when a pipe bursts and water flows underneath you will probably need to replace
    4. Carpet: The carpet and the pad underneath will absorb water from a busted pipe. Discoloration is common when the carpet gets wet.
    5. Tile: Probably the hardest to detect water-damaged ceramic tile. In most cases, the water can glow under the tile. When you walk on it you will see water squeeze up through the grout joints and other voids.