What to Do if Hardwood Floors Get Wet

What to Do if Hardwood Floors Get Wet


Hardwood floors add beauty and value to any home, but they require careful maintenance, especially when it comes to moisture. Water is one of the biggest enemies of hardwood floors. Whether from spills, leaks, or humidity, excessive moisture can cause warping, staining, and irreversible damage. Knowing what to do if your hardwood floors get wet is crucial in minimizing damage and preserving the longevity of your flooring. This article will guide you through the steps to take if you find yourself dealing with wet hardwood floors.

What to Do if Hardwood Floors Get Wet

1. Remove Water Immediately

Quick Response

The first and most critical step is to remove any standing water as quickly as possible. Use soft towels or a wet vacuum to absorb and remove the water. The quicker you remove the water, the better your chances of minimizing the damage to the wood.

Preventive Measures

After drying the surface water, check for signs of water under rugs or furniture and remove them to prevent trapped moisture. Always ensure that the cleanup tools and materials themselves are not abrasive to avoid scratching the wood.

2. Dry the Area Thoroughly

Use of Fans and Dehumidifiers

Once the surface water is mopped up, use fans and dehumidifiers to dry out the area thoroughly. Position fans to circulate air across the affected area and run a dehumidifier nearby to help pull moisture out of the wood. This can take several days, but maintaining airflow and reducing humidity is crucial during this period.

Avoid Heat Sources

It's important not to use heat, like a heat gun or hair dryer, as this can cause the wood to warp or split. Gentle and consistent air circulation is the key to effective drying.

3. Assess the Damage

Look for Signs of Warping and Discoloration

After the floor has dried, inspect for any signs of warping or discoloration. If the boards are cupping or bulging, it indicates that moisture has penetrated deeper into the wood. Dark spots can be a sign of mildew or mold starting to form.

Consult a Professional

If there is noticeable damage, it may be necessary to consult a flooring professional. They can assess whether the floor can be repaired or if sections need to be replaced. In some cases, sanding and refinishing might be sufficient to restore the floor's appearance.

4. Prevent Future Water Damage

Routine Maintenance and Immediate Spill Cleanup

To prevent future incidents, ensure that spills are cleaned up immediately and consider using rugs or mats in high-risk areas, such as near sinks or doorways. Regular maintenance, including proper cleaning and occasional refinishing, will also protect your floors from moisture damage.

Invest in a Good Quality Sealer

Applying a high-quality sealer can provide an additional layer of protection against moisture. Ensure that the sealer is appropriate for your type of hardwood floor.


Water damage to hardwood floors can be distressing, but quick and effective actions can greatly mitigate the harm. By promptly removing water, ensuring thorough drying, assessing for damage, and taking preventive measures, you can maintain the beauty and integrity of your hardwood floors for years to come.

If you encounter severe water damage or need professional advice on the care of your hardwood floors, consider visiting Georgia Carpet and Floors in Bradenton, FL. Their flooring experts can provide you with valuable guidance and services. Alternatively, you can explore their offerings and resources online at Georgia Carpet and Floors to ensure your floors stay pristine and protected.