Every house owner who experienced water damage knows this is a tricky situation to manage.
And the truth is that it is rather challenging to underline the exact steps to tackle issues concerning a wet floor or wall.
Still, you can use a dehumidifier to your advantage based on the damage’s severity.
Read on to find out our insights on how to dry a wet floor and walls using a dehumidifier.
You will be amazed by how efficient this solution might turn out to be for specific situations.
Why Use A Dehumidifier for Water Damage?
Let’s clarify why a dehumidifier is useful in this situation.
First of all, this device can retain moisture from the air, which can speed up the drying process of your damp floors and walls.
Secondly, if you clean the room of the waterflood and position a dehumidifier in the middle, you can diminish the damage and increase drying.
Still, keep in mind that if your water damage is rather severe, you might need several dehumidifiers to achieve the desired results.
Pro tip: use both a dehumidifier and a ventilation fan
For some households, the water damage to floors or walls might be too extensive for a dehumidifier to work.
This is why experts recommend using both a high-volume fan and a dehumidifier.
Combining those two devices will speed up the drying process because the fan will aid in evaporating water.
As a result, the dehumidifier will work faster and more efficiently.
Experts say you should never check if the surface is dry only by touching.
Your house might have some construction particularities, which might only allow the walls or floor to dry on the surface.
Thus, it is essential to check the area with a moisture meter.
This tool will get you insights into how dry an area is. Also, you can significantly decrease the chances of experiencing mold if you don’t allow any moisture on your walls or flooring.
How to Use A Dehumidifier for Water Damage?
When it comes to drying a wet floor or wall using a dehumidifier, you won’t have to worry about complicated steps.
If you have average water damage, a home dehumidifier can help you dry the room after you remove the excess water.
But you should know there is no tool to help you establish how long you should keep the dehumidifier running.
The drying time depends based on many factors, including how old your home is and how much water got leaked.
Thus, experts say that a home dehumidifier might take more than two days to dry a room, while a commercial device might dry it in up to 48 hours.
Also, you can use the data from a moisture meter to determine if the room is dry or not.
Besides this, our pro tips for drying a wet floor or walls using a dehumidifier are as it follows:
- First of all, you need to decide whether or not you need to rent a commercial dehumidifier. If your water damage is extensive, the standard home device might not help you dry the room.
- Secondly, you should use both a dehumidifier and high-volume fans. In this way, you will speed up the process and prompt the water in damp walls to evaporate fasters.
- Always remember that each dehumidifier was designed to shut off as soon as it reached capacity. Hence, it would be best if you emptied its tank frequently to keep up the drying process.
- If you are using a home dehumidifier, you should keep the humidity control set at its lowest. This will increase its efficacy, as most household devices are created to stop at 50% humidity.
- Lastly, but not least important, you should always start drying the room after removing excess water and furniture items. Having those around can significantly decrease the drying process, and it can even prevent a dehumidifier from doing its job.
Dehumidifiers Might Not Help You with Structural Drying
So, the general idea here is that a dehumidifier might help you dry the water damage caused to your floors or walls.
But before you get too excited about this, you should know that if your home damage is extensive, such devices might not keep up the pace.
As such, a dehumidifier is not created to help with structural drying.
This means it won’t dry the interior as it needs to, making room for additional issues to your house’s structure or air quality.
Of course, experts say that using a couple of dehumidifiers in the area with water damage can help you achieve structural drying.
The secret is to empty the tank as often as possible and adjust the settings on your dehumidifier.
For most devices, the capacity is the main problem that prevents them from drying your room accordingly.
Standard dehumidifiers might retain up to 9 gallons of water.
But this might not turn out to be helpful if you have water damage from a hot water tank of 50 gallons of water.
Thus, removing excess water is the first step.
But the second most important thing you need to do is to install several dehumidifiers.
And, of course, to modify the device’s standard 50% humidity setting.
This will enable the dehumidifier to retain more water and speed up drying.
Experts say that if you feel like a standard home dehumidifier doesn’t do much for drying your interior, you can always turn your attention to a commercial device.
As such, you might benefit from additional power in retaining water and drying your room.
Which Is the Best Dehumidifier for Water Damage Problem?
So, as mentioned above, a standard home dehumidifier can help you manage water damage to your floors or walls.
But it would help if you were prepared to wait for a more extended period for the room to completely dry.
This happens because home dehumidifiers come with a small capacity, and they retain small amounts of water.
Experts recommend using a commercial dehumidifier for faster and more reliable results. Such units might remove up to 1000 gallons of water per day.
So, we can say for sure this is the best solution for extensive water damage.
And the best part about it is that you can rent it for a decent weekly rate.
Are There Ways to Improve the Efficiency of My Dehumidifier?
After a lot of use, the efficiency of a dehumidifier drops to a great extent.
It may be because of several reasons like coils requiring replacement, improper usage, or it has reached its life cycle.
Here are a few tips you can follow to increase the efficiency of a dehumidifier, especially when you want to dry a wet floor and walls faster:
1- Look for the frost
An unexpected change in the climate near your dehumidifier may negatively affect the device’s functioning.
Frost sometimes develops on the device if it has been used in temperatures below 18 degrees Celsius.
If you see ice or frost developing on the dehumidifier on the filter or coil, then just depower the device and keep it in the area where the temperature is high so that the frost can quickly melt down.
2- Select an area where the air circulation is good
To add to the dehumidifier’s efficiency, ensure that you keep it at least a foot away from the wall or the things obstructing its flow.
Furniture and the wall can negatively affect the gadget’s efficiency by 50%. Keep all sides of the dehumidifier clean so that air filtering is 360 degrees.
3- Don’t use the dehumidifier close to open doors and windows
It is essential to place the dehumidifier correctly to add to its performance.
Ensure all the doors and windows of the place are closed where the dehumidifier is sited.
Opening the doors will prevent its functioning. You don’t want the dehumidifier to purify the air coming from outside.
It negatively impacts the lifespan of the product.
4- Wait for 10 minutes when you turn your dehumidifier on
A lot of product manuals come with an instruction that after every shut down of the device, ten minutes should go before it is turned off.
It is because the dehumidifier requires some time to recalibrate before it can start with its regular operations.
5- Keep the dehumidifier coils clean
The coils of your dehumidifier continuously function to catch the infected particles.
Hence, you should clean the coils from time to time. Just unplug the dehumidifier and vacuum the coils.
Clean it up with a disinfectant wipe in the end. Finally, the coils are cleaned, and you can use your dehumidifier again.
6- Keep the water storage unit clean
Using the right drainage method for your dehumidifier water container helps in the optimum performance of the device.
A lot of users ignore this part. If you don’t check the water container periodically, it will lead to a buildup of algae and other bacteria.
Hence, what you should do is depower the device and clean the water storage unit to ensure the highest dehumidifier efficacy and air purity.
7- Change and clean the filter of the dehumidifier periodically
The service life of a dehumidifier isn’t limitless. The filter collects dust, debris, mold, etc., and gets clogged up on the thin coils of the device.
Many manuals suggest that the filter should be cleaned at least once annually or replaced if it has completed its lifespan.
You can clean the filter by scrubbing it with a sponge and disinfectant supplies.
And, if you need a new filter, you should check out the model and place an order for the same to maintain the dehumidifier’s efficiency.
8- Do not run the dehumidifier if the humidity level is less than 50%.
Nowadays, dehumidifiers come with an in-built sensor to calculate the humidity level.
The sensors help in monitoring the humidity level of the room where it is functioning. It is constantly functioning irrespective of whether the humidity levels are 10% or 70%.
Thus, using the air cleaner only when the humidity level is less than 50% is not suggested because the device produces less impact while using the same level of power and work.
So, you can dry a wet floor or damp walls using a dehumidifier. All you have to do is be careful about the process and choose the correct device.
Thus, if you experience reduced water damage due to leaks in your home, you can easily use a home dehumidifier to dry the room.
But if you have severe water damage, you must take several steps into account.
Hence, you must remove items or furniture from the room while clearing the flooded water.
And, as experts say, it is always best to consider a commercial dehumidifier for faster results.
Meen Smith is a nurse by profession who loves writing online, spending time with her family and caring for the elderly. She has already worked as an associate editor on various moms, babies, home appliances, kitchen, and healthy living blogs. In her spare time, she also enjoys drawing, reading/writing kindle eBooks and improving her skills a bit.