Last night I was writing about floor damage, primarily around tubs and showers. The specific topic had to do with failed caulking. For a simple topic, this garnered a surprising amount of interest as it is a problem everyone sees on occasion or maybe even more often than not. In that blog, I made reference to what I consider to be a poor judgement call -- expensive wood floors in areas where water might end up spoiling them. Personally, I know something about this as a door in my house, from outside, opens onto an oak floor. If I was to do it again, the area in front of the door at the inside would be tile. The photos below I took the other day. They are from an expensive home.
The first one is the result of repeated spillage of water onto the floor through a shower curtain.
The second photo is a closeup view of the same area and there is not only unsightly and warped flooring but actual rot in the floor, at the upper left side.
The last picture is from the same house and, obviously, the laundry tub has had some leaks. This spoiled the floor and not much can be done other than replacing it in that area and that will probably not match well either.
I have friends, in a very nice home on Camano Island, and they have an oak floor in the kitchen. One day the washing machine sprung a leak in an adjacent room, the water ran out to the kitchen, so now they too have a warped floor. They have had, lesser, but similar problems when the garbage disposal backed up and the hose came off. I like hardwood floors, but there is a place and a time for them and it is not in areas where it is probable that, at one point or another, water will spill onto them. They have almost no tolerance for this abuse.
Thanks for coming by.
Bellingham WA home inspector
Steven L. Smith