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water damage repair


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    About 5 years ago I had a water leak near my front door. The roof was replaced back then and the leak was fixed. I thought nothing more of it. However I am now replacing my peel and stick tiles by that front door and I have discovered a lot of bad (rotten) wood. There is a layer of old fake-wood flooring that is not strong enough to hold new flooring (spongy)

    I have removed most of the rotten wood flooring (which is dry, not wet) and the plywood below it where needed. There is a good sized area that needs to be fixed. Maybe 2 square feet, in an irregular shape. Below the rotten wood and rotten plywood is more solid wood - there are no joists visible. I guess I didn't get deep enough to hit those yet. This is an older house and I'm not sure how many layers of flooring there are, and it's difficult to get below that part of the house to check on things (it's a muddy and very low crawl space).

    Anyway, since the repair is quite deep and irregular (inch and a half deep in some places) my thought for fixing this are as follows. Would be interested in any opinions on this course of action.

    1) Remove any remaining rotten wood
    2) Apply wood hardener, wait until dry
    3) Fill and patch with floor leveling compound
    4) Apply my new stick-on tiles

    If this sounds OK, what is a good type of floor leveling compound to use?

    Thanks for any input.

  • #2
    Since you have multiple layers of floor, it would be easier to cut out the top layer in a square around the rotted area, then get a piece of plywood/OSB that is the same thickness and replace it the spot with screws. Just set your saw to the depth of the wood you want to cut out.

    If you're installing vinyl, you'll have to do a little patching around the perimeter of the section you replaced so that the joint doesn't telegraph through the face of the vinyl.


    • #3
      Thanks for the reply - I have been able to cut out a chunk of the old wood as suggested using my circular saw. I needed to buy a new blade though - the old one wasn't cutting much of anything. I got down to the level of the wood that was resting on the joists. Instead of plywood I guess back in the day they used 3/4" planks. The planks are about They seem sturdy, except for one closest to the door that is a bit worse for wear but still basically sound. This part of the house was built in the 1960's. It was interesting to see some of the old floral pattern that was installed back then, on some type of strong cardboard-like material. And beneath it all, tar paper like they put on roofs.

      I found some plywood at my favorite store (Menards) and the next step is to cut it to shape. I should be OK from here on out but if I run into more problems I'll post here again.

      Thanks again, I appreciate the help.



      • #4
        Muddy crawl space....

        You mention having mud in the crawl space. This a bad situation. It should be about as dry as a bone in there! This is a result of poor drainage from improper ground slope, too short of downspouts or maybe a leaking pipe. I recommend you check that out as it could be a mold starter, as well as deteriorating your house from under.


        • #5
          I believe the wet crawl space is due to water from the road running down the driveway and going through (under) the house, emerging on the other side. I am on a slope, the road is higher than my house and then it goes into the back yard. I guess the next item on my list should be to redirect that water away from the house. Thanks for bringing that to my attention. Always something to do around here...
          Last edited by lkeeble; 01-30-2010, 10:59 PM. Reason: say thanks to OP