Wet Subfloor

 
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Old 08-24-2007, 06:18 PM   #1
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Wet Subfloor


I just noticed a small shower leak that has caused my subfloor to be pretty wet. The subfloor has soaked the water up to about 2 1/2 feet away from the shower and is pretty damp right now. I have pulled the vinyl flooring back about 3 foot to expose the subfloor to allow it to dry. I am happy that I found this leak now before it actually rotted the floor out, but how long should this take to dry before i can install new vinyl? Damn shower door seal is the culprit.

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Old 08-24-2007, 06:35 PM   #2
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Re: Wet Subfloor


What material is it that got wet? If it was the particle board underlayment it may need replacing as it often softens and swells when wet.

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Old 08-24-2007, 08:27 PM   #3
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Re: Wet Subfloor


its a thin plywood of some sort, not particle
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Old 08-24-2007, 08:40 PM   #4
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Re: Wet Subfloor


You're probably looking at the underlayment (most likely 1/4" luan plywood).

I would remove the entire floor, down to the subfloor (vinyl and underlayment). If you don't, you'll have mold growing between the subfloor and the underlayment. Let it dry out & treat with a mild bleach solution & use a fan to dry it out. How long it will take obviously depends on how wet things got. If it's a long term thing, you may find the subfloor below the underlayment needs to be cut out & replaced.
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Old 08-25-2007, 08:36 AM   #5
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Re: Wet Subfloor


it is the underlayment not the subfloor that is wet. I had a ceiling leak downstairs because of this so i cut out part of the ceiling to see what the floor looked like. Everything looked good, I caught this very early on so its minimal now. The subfloor it self isn't wet, just damp from the wet underlayment. I did spray some bleach on the underlayment but it still smells musty. I guess I should pull it up

Last edited by Alex PCI; 08-25-2007 at 09:24 AM.
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Old 08-25-2007, 09:24 AM   #6
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Re: Wet Subfloor


Just pulled the underlayment up and found that it was put over old vinyl which looks like it stopped the water from going any further. Can i just cut out the bad underlayment, patch in some new and go over that with new vinyl
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Old 08-25-2007, 09:29 AM   #7
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Re: Wet Subfloor


here is a pic of the subfloor, its just a little damp around the corners but thats it

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Old 08-25-2007, 11:38 AM   #8
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Re: Wet Subfloor


For how discolored that wood looks I would cut it all out, and pull up some of the old vinyl it was put over to make sure the floor underneath isn't wet. It looks as if it has been leaking for a while and chances are the water seeped underneath the second layer of vinyl. In the long run the more you pull out the better off you will be. the musty smell will never go away until everything is completely dried and treated, I use a chemical called DX-50 that is very effective, but I know others that use bleach.

The biggest problem people have in trying to assess water damage is they try to go by the feel of the surface of the material. once the surface of a material is exposed to air, it will seem to dry very fast, but the parts beneath it still retain the moisture. An example of this is when people have a carpeted basement that floods, they call and say I think the flooded area is 9 x 9, because thats where they can feel the carpet is wet, but in general that means the pad is probably wet in an area 50% larger than that.
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Old 08-25-2007, 12:34 PM   #9
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Re: Wet Subfloor


I agree, cut it out of there. That looks like SYP plywood and that stuff buckles like mad when it gets wet.
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Old 08-25-2007, 01:11 PM   #10
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Re: Wet Subfloor


it seems that shower doors cause this sort of trouble quite alot from what ive been reading. Is there a better way to waterproof the floor so this doesnt happen again
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Old 08-25-2007, 05:16 PM   #11
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Re: Wet Subfloor


Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex PCI View Post
it seems that shower doors cause this sort of trouble quite alot from what ive been reading. Is there a better way to waterproof the floor so this doesnt happen again
Yeah, tile it, and use ditra and kerdi
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Old 08-25-2007, 05:22 PM   #12
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Re: Wet Subfloor


doesnt the water still go through the tile, I know the ditra stops it but what does it do then? Does it just stay on the ditra forever
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Old 08-26-2007, 12:11 PM   #13
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Re: Wet Subfloor


Alex

Are you sure its the shower doors? I cant imagine that that much water is getting outside the door without you noticing this for so long. You need to find out for sure before you spend any time and money putting things back together. It could be the drain leaking or something else as well.
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Old 08-26-2007, 12:32 PM   #14
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Re: Wet Subfloor


Use Georgia Pacific DensShield to patch the drywall that you removed on both sides. Skim coat it with drywall setting compounds. That floor is still very wet in the pics, I can smell it from here. Either let it dry out completely then go over it or remove it. As long as it's dry and it's stable and flat it doesn't matter what you do. Silicone all the seams of your new vinyl where it meets the walls and is covered by the base, install the base and silicone the gap between the base and the new vinyl.
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Old 08-26-2007, 04:57 PM   #15
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Re: Wet Subfloor


I was meaning to add this, no matter what you decide to do, you will want to invest in a shower curtain, even with the shower door, the curtain will solve 99% of your water problems. (if the door unit is the actual problem)
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Old 08-30-2007, 08:50 AM   #16
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Re: Wet Subfloor


You need a pin type wood moisture meter to determine when the wood has dried out. Anything else is just a guessing gamble.

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