I have some water damaged floor that I have to replace. It has long
since dried out now. I had some estimates done, found only two people
who would do it and one was twice as expensive. Anyway I spent the
difference and the cheaper guy (who had great references) left the
country, so I'm stuck doing as much as possible by myself. I'm going
to at least tear out the old floor and then decide whether I want to
try putting in the new one or not.
Right now its a part tile floor and part vinyl, under both of which is
OSB. The plywood sub floor and joists are both fine, I as told. I've
already torn out part of the vinyl, and am starting to chip away at
the OSB boards that are obviously swollen beyond hope. Now for the
questions, since I've never done anything like this before.
How can I know which OSB absolutely must be replaced? Can I just
eyeball it? Some parts that got wet dont show any swelling; other
parts I dont remember whether they got wet or not because the damage
is old. I dont want to remove boards that are OK, and I dont want to
find out when I'm (or whoever) start to put down the vinyl that there
are still bad boards.
Other than that, what do I need to be aware of as I do this? I'm
worried I may accidentally damage the subfloor (though I cant imagine
how) or do some other expensive mistake. There is very little mold.
I'm guessing I will have to remove a min of 5-6 OSB boards across two
rooms, but at worst it could be closer to 10.
set an old skill saw for the thickness needed and cross hatch cuts to
make manageable pieces. Start again with new materials as you will
not be capable to clean the old OSB enough to put a finish floor on
Well I may have to replace the entire vinyl floor in the kitchen,
though that will be a major task. There are 3 very large banks of
cabinets, a sink and water heater that will have to come out. Ugh...
But I should be able to just replace part of the tiled dining room
OSB. It just has self adhesive tiles and most were replaced less than
2 years ago so new ones should match up pretty well.
Assuming you can get the same OSB to match you could likely get away
with that - but I'd never put OSB on the floor of any house I owned.
(or any roof - or sheathing for that matter).
As you can likely tell - I have no use for the stuff.
It sounds like the water heater might be an issue, but draining and
moving it is relatively easy.
As for banks of cabinets, unless you have evidence that the damage
extends under them, you can probably replace flooring and floor
coverings up to the base of the units and use a trim to conceal the
edge. Ideally all the old OSB would go - your comment about "little
mold" is telling. Playing with possible mold has all sorts of nasty
consequences. If you ever get inspected down the line and mold comes
up, that's a big black mark.
When I replaced flooring in our place after a large water damage
issue, I took out all the boards with any evidence of water contact,
then the boards adjacent to them. I was "fortunate" in finding that
our old place had a tiny slope to the floor, so moisture travel was
restricted. In the vinylfloor area (kitchen), I took up everything,
put down new ply, and relaid the new vinyl floor. In the rest, I was
fortunate to be using carpet, and underpadding can hide a multitude of
But bottom line, don't let the idea of a smaller (or cheaper) job
prevent you from taking up anything that could even possibly be water
damaged or contain mold. Just not worth it.
I'm finding it pretty easy to determine what got wet. Where the osb
got wet, it crumbles when I pry it up.
I have been finding small patches of mold/mildew in places where I
expected to, like along the wall. But everything is dry so I dont
foresee it sticking around.
I presume you don't have homeowner's insurance that would cover
Regarding how much to replace, it's always going to be a judgement
call, unless you replace all of it. Given the consequences of
failure, I'd err on the side of taking out extra, as opposed to
not. Anything that looks at all suspicios or that you know was water
logged goes. We don;t know the percentages, but it may be best to
just replace it all in the areas that are being redone.
On May 2, 8:18 am, email@example.com wrote:
I was paid already by the insurance company. I have few options for
contractors (Most never even called me back) got 2 quotes, one very
high, a lot more than I ended up with after the deductible, and one
very reasonable and less than they paid out. The reasonable guy left
the area so I was left with no choice but to do it myself, or pay $12
grand for a new floor largely out of my pocket. So I figured it was
time for me to learn flooring.
I'm going one sheet beyond the first clean, dry edge in each
direction, with one exception: I'm not taking out the kitchen sink and
all the associated cabinets and dishwasher, because there is no
evidence the water got that far. I might change my mind but it seems
silly when the edge next to it was completely clean dry and hard.
Anyway its been a learning experience and helluva lot of work. I think
I only have a few more sheets to go...I think I'm going to replace
with plywood, not OSB.
I'd be interested in ideas for not too expensive, not too difficult
coverings for when I'm done. For the kitchen I just want something
durable and easy. For the dining room (which is really nothing but a
huge, space wasting hallway) I just want something better than the
self-adhesive tiles which I hated. I guess there are some options that
take the place of the underlayment, but I know nothing about any of
this. I'm going down to Menard's and Home Despot tonite to begin my
BTW, there was a heavy paper material under the OSB. What was that
for?? This is also a good indicator of what got wet and what didnt. Is
it something I need to replace where it was damaged?
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