How to Repair Water Damage on Baseboards in Step-By-Step
Water damage is a dreaded sight for every homeowner. However, that doesn’t stop it from affecting your home’s wood, including its baseboards.
In this step-by-step guide we’ll show you how you can repair what seems like irreparable damage to your baseboards.
Step One: Identify the Damage
Sometimes it’s perfectly easy, if not obvious, where water damage has arrived. You may discover damp patches around certain portions of the floor, or perhaps you have discovered frequent leaking in a particular area.
In other instances, it isn’t quite as obvious. When people hear water damage they tend to think of outright leaks, but this isn’t always the case. Cracks, bubbling, or swelling beneath the surface of your floor are all indicators of damage.
If you haven’t had any identifiable leaks from within your home, then your water damage may be coming from inside your walls. Broken pipes, even if only slightly damaged, can accumulate moisture over time. This moisture puts pressure on your baseboards which then causes water damage. Left untreated, this can become a real problem.
Step Two: Get Your Tools Together
You’re going to need some equipment if you’re planning on tackling your water damage by yourself. We recommend assembling the following supplies:
- Pry bar
- Utility knife
If your baseboards are wooden (as most are), then make sure you also bring some wood, glue, and filler.
Step Three: Remove the Damaged Area
If you’ve decided to proceed, the first thing you need to do is use your pry bar to get the damaged baseboard up. Take your time with this step. If you’re too heavy-handed you run the risk of damaging the surrounding areas in addition to the drywall.
To fully remove the damaged baseboard, you will need to break the seal between the trim and the wall. Slowly and carefully work away at it with the utility knife until the baseboard becomes loose enough for you to pry up.
Step Four: Clean Up
Using the same utility knife from before, chip away at any caulk or glue residue from where you removed the baseboard. When it comes to sealing the new board down, a clean slate makes for a much better fit. If you discover any rough spots, sand them down to ensure total smoothness of the drywall.
Now is also a good time to check for any further damp spots. If you see any signs of excess moisture, don’t bother applying a new baseboard. You’ll just end up damaging it again. If the damp/leak is persistent, it’s likely time to give up the DIY project and call in an expert.
Step Five: Measure Your Baseboard Replacement
Using the old, damaged baseboard section you just pried up, find a replacement baseboard of similar size. When you purchase your new baseboard, you want it to be a few feet longer than the original damaged piece. This is for if you make any mistakes when it comes to trimming it down. It’s always better to have more.
Step Six: Paint Your Baseboard to Match the Wall
A common mistake people make when replacing their baseboards is attempting to paint them after they’re fitted. It is far easier to paint them prior to fitting. Not only does this provide you with more manoeuvrability while painting, but it also means you don’t need to lay down any carpet or floor protection.
Step Seven: Fit Your New Baseboard in Place
Once you have primed, painted, and cut down your new baseboard, it’s time to secure it in place! You’ll need both caulk and nails for this portion to ensure it’s not going to budge in years to come.
Apply the caulk to the back of the replacement baseboard. Once that’s done, secure its placement by hammering in some nails to attach it to the wall. Job done!
Not Confident? Let Us Help
Replacing baseboards isn’t a straightforward task for everyone, and even if it were, water damage is difficult to deal with. This may be a job that’s out of your hands.
Contact our team at All Dry USA today to book an inspection! Our experts will come to your property, replace your baseboards, and prevent any water damage from happening in the future. Give us a call today!