Laminate flooring is typically resistant to water damage, but a large amount of moisture can still eventually destroy the floor. Fortunately, since this type of flooring is made up of several sections locked together, you can usually repair water damage on your own without having to peel the entire floor up. The first step is to dry the wet area so that there is no more water on the surface. You can then remove the parts that are damaged, and then dry the floor underneath. The final step is to put down new laminate in place of the damaged sections.
In many cases, a laminate floor becomes flooded when a dishwasher, washing machine, or refrigerator leaks, though of course standing water of any kind can cause damage. Once the source of the water is determined and fixed, the laminate floor should be dried thoroughly. This task can usually be completed by mopping or using a wet-dry vacuum, depending on the amount of water. Once any excess water is dried up, a fan should be placed on the floor to help dry the floorboards underneath before you repair the damaged sections.
You can typically use a circular saw or crowbar to repair water damage to a laminate floor by removing the wet sections. In most cases, you will need to use a chisel and hammer to start pulling away the damaged pieces without ruining the surrounding surface. The next step is to remove the tongue part of the laminate board using a knife. After you remove the old laminate, you should put a fan on the floorboards in order to dry them before adding new material. This can stop mold from growing in the future as a result of moist floorboards.
Before you put new laminate down, you will need to create a pattern that matches the current flooring. You should then add construction glue, followed by placing the first piece into the correct area according to the pattern. Be sure to wipe off any extra glue before it dries, and then place heavy objects on the area until it is completely dry. You may decide to use nails instead of glue when you repair water damage to a laminate floor. If you choose this route, you will need to nail the first section of the new floorboard to one of the existing sections so that it fits snugly.