Water under your laminate flooring can cause severe damage if not dried quickly. Laminate flooring is relatively easy to install and maintain, but there are a few things you need to know about how to dry laminate flooring with water under it. If you’re a homeowner, then you know that there’s always something to be fixed or improved on your property.

Dry laminate flooring with water underneath it is one of those problems that can quickly become a more significant issue if not addressed early on.

To get started, you need to know the basics of what is needed.

Are Laminate Floors Waterproof?

First off, let’s talk about what makes up this type of flooring. Four layers make up the material: 

  • Back Layer: The bottom layer; protects the plank from dampness and levels the floor.
  • Above the back layer comes the Core Layer, a rigid, high-density board that protects against indentations and dampness.
  • Above the core layer is the design layer, which contains a high-resolution image of the floor’s surface look.
  • Wear Layer: The top layer; is a transparent aluminum oxide layer that protects against fading, stains, and surface burns.

The wear layer is where you’ll find the water-resistant qualities in laminate floors. Their design cannot hold an entire spill; however, it won’t allow water to penetrate immediately. 

The amount of water that can penetrate depends on the water resistance of the individual boards.

The good news is that you can address most spills pretty quickly, and if they do make contact with your floor, you should be able to wipe away any liquid, in most cases, without much issue.

You can also spot-clean any minor stains or spills to help cut down on the likelihood of setting in.

Source: canva.com

The one thing you want to be aware of is that if a liquid manages to soak through, it’s important not to walk across your floor until you have addressed the problem and then dried it off.

What Level of Moisture Is Safe for Laminate Floors?

As with any flooring, you want to avoid excess moisture to keep it looking and working at its best. That means preventing large spills and leaks whenever possible and, if they do occur, taking quick action to wipe them up. It’s also a good idea to invest in a water-resistant flooring protector to help keep your floors safe.

These protectors are easy to apply, which you’ll appreciate if you ever need to do so after an accident. They also provide peace of mind knowing that the risk of damage is low even if something does happen.

We’ll then cover some tips on best protecting your laminate flooring from water damage.

If you do not treat spills and leaks immediately, it may harm any laminate flooring that isn’t waterproof. Usually, the major problem isn’t water on the laminate floors’ core surface. When the liquid leaks into the locking mechanism around the edges, the problem occurs. Warping, cupping, and buckling in flooring may develop as a result.

How To Dry Laminate Flooring With Water Under It

Drying laminate flooring with water can be complicated. Still, if you use the proper method for your situation, you should have no problem making your floors safe again after flooding or any other type of water damage.

There are several things you can do to dry your laminate flooring with water under it:

Clean up any remaining water on the surface using a dry cloth or towel. If the water is deep, suction it up using a wet vac or a water pump. If there is a substantial quantity of liquid, avoid pushing the fabric into it as you clean; instead, put the cloth immediately on the spill and allow it to soak in naturally.

While dehumidifiers actively remove moisture from the air, fans enhance air circulation and may aid in the fight against mold and mildew.

The best solution is to use purpose-built dehumidifiers. They will assist in removing any moisture from the air and will also assist in removing any water from underneath your laminate flooring.

Large fans or a ceiling fan promote air circulation, aid in the fight against mold and mildew, and have the effect of speeding up the drying process of your laminate flooring.

A space heater, preferably one with a fan that will create a wind-tunnel type of airflow around it, can get airflows going underneath the laminate flooring and speed up the process by which water evaporates from the underside of the laminate flooring.

Now, you’ll need to work your way around the board, beginning with the wall on the groove side.

You must remove any flooring surrounding cabinets and walls. You do not want water to leak into these locations, causing damage to the baseboards or walls. Repeat the procedure for each board in the affected region.

Once you eliminate the first row, the following rows will be easy to pick up. If the water damage was not extensive, you might want to consider replacing the flooring with new laminate or hardwood.

However, if the water leak has resulted in mold growth and persistent moisture under your floorboards, it is preferable to cut your losses and replace the old floor. 

Most significantly, you’ll need to repair any damaged flooring near cabinets or walls.

Allow the wood to cure completely before laying the new floor.

After removing the floorboards and placing them in an area untouched by the leak or spill, you may assess how much wood needs replacement.

After removing any waterlogged flooring, position the boards near a dehumidifier or fan to expedite the drying process. Please make sure the panels are flat so they don’t warp. Flat boards help prevent warping, making reinstallation difficult or damaging the surrounding flooring. If a warp is terrible enough, you may need to replace that board.

Depending on the severity of the spill or leak, you may choose to begin with an ammonia-free dish soap and water solution. The method may aid in breaking down oil or other sticky things, making them more straightforward to remove. Following that, it is typically a good idea to clean the underlayment. Allow it to dry completely before washing it with a bleach solution if there is mold or mildew underneath, and replace it if it is damaged to protect your flooring from dampness.

Laminate flooring is popular, durable, affordable, easy to install and maintain. Laminated floors are installed over an underlayment for protection by adhering them to the subfloor with adhesive.

However, if water damages your laminate floors, you may have some questions about what you should do next. 

When cleaning up water-damaged laminates:

  • Clean the surface first using ammonia-free dish soap and warm water – depending on the type of spill or leak.
  • Scrub with bleach solution afterward.
  • Remove underlayment and disinfect the subfloor.
  • Let the floor dry.

Whether you have a water-damaged laminate floor or other types of laminate, make sure to check out our full line of hardwood and laminate flooring products.

Begin by liberally applying an ammonia-free dish soap and water combination to the damp laminate flooring, taking care not to saturate it. After that, completely dry with a towel or cloth before proceeding to the following step. Utilize a sponge mop or towel designed for this purpose to apply a bleach solution over the whole surface. 

Ensure that no puddles remain after applying this mixture since they impede the drying process. Allow for the evaporation of any surplus bleach solution. Finally, dry the flooring again using a towel or cloth before reinstalling them.

If you’re reusing an existing underlayment, inspect the point where the pad adheres to the wall and the connection points between each piece. If they are still in excellent condition, adjust them until they are secure.

When installing new underlayment, follow the manufacturer’s directions. Typically, the initial piece will be applied to one wall, extending slightly above the floor. Once that component is in position, use the adhesive strip to secure the next part. You should repeat the procedure until you reach the opposite wall.

Before restoring laminate flooring, be careful to lay down the underlayment.

Now it’s time to replace the laminate flooring, either with a pry bar or with your hands, whichever is most convenient for you.

As a precaution, you may wish to consult the manufacturer’s directions while restoring your laminate floor. Because most laminate floorings operate identically, this may not be essential.

If you have old, worn-out floorings that are no longer usable in your home or business then it’s time for an upgrade. Replace them with something more durable like hardwood floors and don’t worry about cutting down any boards because they can be installed exactly where their predecessors were laid!

When you’re done installing flooring, make sure to install any trim that was removed. You can simply hammer nails into place for this task!

Today’s Homeowner Tips

Many methods protect laminate flooring from water damage. Numerous possibilities are incompatible with laminate, so you’ll want to check the manufacturer’s label to see if a compatible product is available. If you take preventative measures, you might apply a sealant.

I hope this article has been helpful and answers your question about drying laminate flooring with water under it. Please write any comments or suggestions down below, and don’t forget to share with your friends on social media so they can also learn how to clean up water damage on laminate flooring.

Editorial Contributors
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Matt Greenfield

Matt Greenfield is an experienced writer specializing in home improvement topics. He has a passion for educating and empowering homeowners to make informed decisions about their properties. Matt's writing focuses on a range of topics, including windows, flooring, HVAC, and construction materials. With a background in construction and home renovation, Matt is well-versed in the latest trends and techniques in the industry. His articles offer practical advice and expert insights that help readers tackle their home improvement projects with confidence. Whether you're a DIY enthusiast or a seasoned professional, Matt's writing is sure to provide valuable guidance and inspiration.

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