Whether we are working from home or if the kids are back in school, Americans do a lot of laundry. American families wash more than 660 million loads every week. And that many clothing items need a lot of water.
That breaks down to an average household washing 50 pounds of laundry per week. According to the ENERGY STAR database, front-load washers use an average of 12.5 gallons of water per load, while top-load washers average 19.6 gallons per load. But you only need one washer overflow to flood your laundry room and cause thousands of dollars in water damage restoration costs.
Imagine many buckets of water tossed into the enclosed laundry space. The walls will be splashed, the baseboards soaked and the floor flooded. To withstand the general wear-and-tear, plus the risk of flooding, laundry room flooring should be up to the task. If you are about to replace your floors, look for materials that are easy to clean and affordable. Plus:
The latest luxury vinyl mimics high-end materials like wood or stone at a lower price. Luxury vinyl tile (LVT) is made from multiple layers of material fused on a vinyl backing, the core, and a top “wear” layer. The outer-facing protective layer withstands moisture, humidity, and foot traffic in the laundry room for 10 to 30 years.
A cheaper sheet vinyl is glued down to the laundry room subfloor in large sections for fewer seams than LVT flooring. However, it’s thinner than LVT, offers less insulation against the cold, sounds, and dents. The lifespan is 20 years or less.
Ceramic tile is the least expensive but grout grunge adds to cleaning effort. In wet spaces, it can be slippery, cold and noisier than other choices.
Waterproof for the problem that you haven’t had YET! For example, with all these flooring options, run a bead of sealant around the edges where the floor meets the wall to protect laundry sheetrock from a potential spill. But think bigger. Prevent a leak from flooding the rest of the house by building a curb across the laundry room’s threshold.
Add an inexpensive washing-machine drip pan under the washer. The lip is about two inches high and can hold a modest sized overflow. It will also buy you several minutes of time in an emergency. You can have a solid pan, or you can have it direct water into the floor drain.
Make sure the supply hoses are in good shape. Check older hoses for cracks and replace worn hoses with the newer style braided stainless steel over rubber.
Consider electronic shutoff valves that automatically stop the flow of water when they sense a leak.You can even have smart devices that can alert your phone if there is a leak.
Laundry rooms are a flashpoint for plumbing issues. The problem could 1) build up over time with a drip, or 2) create an immediate disaster from a broken water supply line. When flooding isn’t corrected immediately, that stagnant water can encourage mold growth, cause structural damage, and ruin your belongings.
In Minneapolis, our water damage restoration experts at ICC will find, correct and restore any signs of water damage at your home. Years of drying hardwood floors, plaster walls, tile and concrete has given us tons of experience and expertise. Our restoration experts use state-of-the-art drying procedures to help minimize potential health hazards that can be caused by water damage.