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Old 03-01-2004, 12:20 PM   #1
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Saltwater effect on hardwood floors

I've had my 90 gallon wannabe reef now for just over a year. In that time I've been basically nursing along a piece of garbage known as a prizm skimmer. It's moved from the back on the tank to the side of the sump in that time, has taken constant adjustments and many people have advised my to trash it and 'get a decent skimmer'. Well I should have listened.
Last week I was away in California on business. My wife called me in a panic at 6:00am. Apparently the skimmer had malfunctioned and dumped 10 gallons of saltwater onto our nice hardwood floors.

My question is: does anyone have any experience of this. The floors are now obviously dry on the surface but there looks like water still in the joints - many joints are dark and slightly ridged. Does this clear up when the floor gets totally dry or should I claim on the insurance now??

Just for info. luckily all the inhabitants of the tank are fine. My wife, in a panic (she was worried about the water getting cold since the heater was in the sump and she had immediately shut off the pump) had dumped kalkwasser and RO watre in the sump, whereupon all the calcium precipitated out. She decided to call me before turning the pump back on (thank god!). Now I've cleaned out the sump, got the pump back on and have a new skimmer (an in-sump model this time) on order.
Just a total bummer on the floor though.....
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Old 03-01-2004, 01:30 PM   #2
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I've had sw on my hardwood floors many times and it didn't do any damage.
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Old 03-01-2004, 01:46 PM   #3
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Andy,
Sorry to hear about your floor. Our whole house is hardwood, (well, the last room is getting done next month!) and yes, they are beautiful. I really feel your pain.

Why don't you call the installer and see what they say -- if the water will dry out itself or if you should file an insurance claim and get new floors. Or maybe the installer/place you bought it will polish it up for you, or try to fix it somehow.

I have been thinking about getting a SW tank for a while now. If I do I'll start this summer. How many people have SW tanks on hardwood? ( I realize that a spill on carpet is no fun either.) I was thinking of getting one of those computer chair mats and putting it under my tank. Will that help, or possibly rub too much, on the hardwood?
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Old 03-01-2004, 01:53 PM   #4
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I hope your insurance company is cooler than mine or they will nicely say it was "negligence" and not covered. If you see water in the crack still go to the hardware store and rent yourself a wet/dry shop vac and suck out the water. Might even consider investing in one for your home in case it happens again. I have carpet under my tank which poses the other side of the spectrum, sure it dries but mildews underneath. My wet/dry sucks about 90% of it out of the carpet. Good luck to you!
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Old 03-01-2004, 02:29 PM   #5
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Salt isn't the problem. Standing water of any kind can cause discoloring and warpage. If you get it mopped up fairly quickly it shouldn't be a problem. Personally I think the 10 gal would need to sit there for a day or 2 before any real damage is done to the wood itself. Just put a fan on the area and all should be fine.

A little moisture in the cracks is really no big deal... the fan will dry it out quite fast.
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Old 03-01-2004, 03:22 PM   #6
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I would imagine alot of it depends on the quality of flooring, the sealant on the floors and things along that line.....
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Old 03-01-2004, 03:33 PM   #7
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Thanks guys for your replies.
I guess I'll give it a go at thoroughly drying out the area before panicking any more.
Hara, this was a new house built 18 months ago. If you knew how much the flooring company charged for fitting this floor it would make your hair stand on end!!!

We shall see....

By the way Lisa, the algae in the fuge was originally from you - been growing like wild fire ever since I got it. The couple of days in virtually zero salinity / high calcium water doesn't seem to have left this stuff much the worse for wear - we shall see here as well!!!
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Old 03-01-2004, 03:48 PM   #8
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Even the lower grade engineered flooring in use today is quite impervious to water. Solid hardwood flooring is not usually glued down but rather nailed to allow for natural expansion and contraction. You'll notice over the years that hardood floors will tend to appear warped depending on the humidity level at that time.
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Old 03-01-2004, 06:59 PM   #9
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i have a flooring store up here in pa and if your wife has cleaned up as much of the water as possible there wont be as problem no mater what kind of floor it is there may ge a little difference at first but once it drys should be as good as new
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