How to Repair Water Damage on Laminate Flooring

By Cezar

If you have laminate flooring in your home, it’s important to know how to repair water damage. Depending on the type of flooring you have, water can cause the boards to swell, warp and break down. If your entire floors are submerged or stay in contact with water long enough, it can cause serious damage.

The first step is to identify the source of the water and take steps to prevent further damage in the future. Once you’ve done that, it’s time to start repairing any existing damage.

Identifying Water Damage on Laminate Floors

Before you can begin to repair water-damaged laminate flooring, you’ll need to identify the extent of the damage. This will help you determine whether you need to repair or replace damaged planks and prevent the damage from spreading further.

Some of the signs of water damage on laminate floors include:

  • Warping or buckling of planks: If you notice that some of the laminate planks have started to warp or buckle, this is a sign that they have been exposed to moisture.
  • Bubbling or swelling: Another sign of water damage is bubbling or swelling of the planks, which occurs when moisture gets trapped between the layers of the flooring.
  • Discolouration: If you notice discolouration on your laminate flooring, this is a sign that moisture has seeped into the planks, causing them to warp or buckle.

If you notice any of these signs of water damage on your laminate flooring, it’s important to take action right away to prevent the damage from spreading and causing further problems.

How to Repair Laminate Floor

How to Prevent Water Damage on Your Laminate Flooring

Preventing moisture damage to laminate floors requires a few simple precautions, but they can make a big difference in the longevity and beauty of your feet. By following these tips and tricks, you can ensure that your flooring looks great and lasts for years to come.

  • Install a Vapor Barrier

A vapour barrier is a thin layer of flooring material that is placed between the subfloor and the laminate flooring. It helps prevent moisture from seeping through the floorboards, which is especially important in high-moisture areas like bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms. A vapour barrier can be made of materials like polyethylene or roofing felt, and it’s relatively easy to install.

  • Leave a Gap Between the Floor and the Walls

Laminate floors need room to expand and contract with changes in temperature and humidity. Leaving a small gap, typically around 1/4 inch, between the flooring and the walls will give it the necessary room to move. This will also help prevent buckling and warping of the boards.

  • Use a Sealant

Applying a sealant on top of the laminate flooring can help protect it from water damage. There are many types of sealants available on the market, including polyurethane, epoxy, and acrylic. Choose a sealant that is specifically designed for laminate flooring and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.

  • Regularly Clean and Vacuum

Dirt, debris, and small stones can scratch the surface of laminate floors, making them more vulnerable to water damage. Regularly cleaning and vacuuming with a soft brush attachment will help remove these particles and keep your floors looking new. Avoid using abrasive cleaners or harsh chemicals that can damage the protective layer of the laminate.

  • Protect from Sunlight Exposure

Direct sunlight can cause laminate floors to fade and discolour over time. To prevent this, keep windows covered with blinds or curtains during peak sunlight hours. You can also use UV-resistant films on windows to reduce the amount of UV light that enters the room.

Laminate Floor Repair Job

If you have laminate flooring, you know how easy it can become damaged by water. Whether it’s from a burst pipe, a dishwasher leak, or an overflowing sink, water can quickly seep into the cracks and cause unsightly warping and buckling. But fear not! With a few simple steps, you can repair your water-damaged laminate floors and have them look as good as new.

Stop the Flow

The first step in repairing water damage on laminate flooring is to stop the flow of water from its source. If you have identified a leak from your dishwasher or another location, it is important to take immediate action to stop the flow of water before beginning any repairs. This can be done by shutting off the main water supply or calling a professional plumber to assess and fix the issue. Once you are sure that the source of the leak has been addressed, you can focus on assessing and repairing any water damage that has occurred on your laminate floors.

Clean Up Your Flooring

Once you have identified and stopped the source of the water damage, it is time to focus on cleaning up any excess water that may remain on your laminate flooring. This is a critical step in repairing water damage, as the longer, the water sits on your flooring, the more likely it is to cause permanent damage. Begin by using a wet/dry vacuum cleaner to remove all excess moisture from the surface of your flooring. If there are any areas that are particularly saturated, you may need to use a towel or cloth to carefully blot up any remaining moisture. Once all visible signs of water have been removed, you can then proceed with further steps in repairing your damaged laminate floors.

Inspecting the Damaged Areas

The next step in repairing moisture damage on your laminate flooring is to closely examine the affected area. This is important as it will help you determine what needs to be done to repair any potential damage. Start by inspecting each laminate plank, looking for signs of warping or buckling. If there are any areas that appear to be damaged, use a small knife to pry them up and check for signs of moisture underneath. You may also need to use a moisture meter if you suspect that moisture has penetrated deeper into the wood. Finally, if you notice any stains or discolouration on your flooring, you will need to sand and refinish the affected area before applying a sealant.

Remove Damaged Planks

If you have identified damaged planks during the examination process, it’s time to remove them. To do this safely and effectively, use a thin tool or knife to get underneath the board and lift it up. Be sure to take your time with this process as the pieces are designed to fit together snugly. Once you have removed all of the affected boards, dispose of them in the appropriate manner. In some cases, you may be able to salvage pieces that are only slightly warped or damaged – but for more serious damage, it is best practice to replace all of the affected planks with new ones.

Replace the Damaged Planks

With the damaged planks removed, it’s time to replace them. Begin by measuring the size of the space left by the damaged planks, then cut replacement planks to the appropriate size. When replacing the planks, be sure to insert them at an angle and then snap them into place. Use a rubber mallet to ensure a tight fit. Once all of the replacement planks have been installed, use a laminate seam sealer to fill in any gaps and provide additional protection against moisture.

Dry the Subfloor

Before installing new laminate boards, it’s essential to dry the subfloor thoroughly. Use a dehumidifier or fan to dry the affected area. If the subfloor is wet, you may need to remove the damaged subflooring and replace it with new material.

Install New Laminate Boards

Once the subfloor is dry, you can begin installing new laminate boards. Start by measuring the length and width of the area you need to replace. Cut the new boards to size using a circular saw, leaving a 1/4-inch gap around the perimeter of the room to allow for expansion. Install the boards by clicking them together and attaching them to the subfloor using adhesive or nails.

Replace the Baseboards and Molding

Finally, reinstall the baseboards and moulding around the perimeter of the room. Use a finish nailer to attach the moulding to the wall and baseboards to the floor. Fill any nail holes with wood filler and sand the surface smoothly. Finish by painting or staining the baseboards and moulding them to match the rest of the room.


Water damage is one of the most common and frustrating issues that homeowners face. When it comes to laminate flooring, it’s essential to act quickly to minimize the damage. Water can cause warping, swelling, and even mould growth, which can lead to costly repairs. However, with the right approach, you can repair water-damaged laminate floors and restore them to their original condition.