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Flooring

Portable A/C Leaked causing buckling to the floor, mildew smell

I live in an older (25+ year old) trailer.  We plugged in our portable A/C unit starting a week or two ago, left for several hours one day and came home to the smell of wet laundry and while trying to find the cause realized our AC unit had been leaking (It was placed off the dining room, near a hallway, it's portable and has an exhaust hose that goes to a window).  We are not sure how long it was leaking, we had been draining it, it is several years old.  Now we have a raised area right under where the unit was.  How do we take care of this properly? It's a cool night so right now I have the portable electric heater pointed towards it (for safety with heater no where near water, no wet area on top of carpet now, used towels to dry, and heater not on raised area and area under and directly around is completely dry, wanted to clear that up before I get tons' of comments about safety with electric heater and water ;) 

Should we remove some panels in the skirting? Keep using the heater at night when it's cooler and fan during the day with windows open to let the moisture out? Is there anything else I can or should be doing?

Thank you for reading this and taking the time to answer.
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Posted 2015-06-13T06:19:38+0000  by Stitch Stitch
 
Should we be cutting up the carpet to get to the floor boards better for drying?
Posted 2015-06-13T07:02:56+0000  by Stitch
If you can remove the carpeting that would help but I suggest peeling it up carefully rather that just cutting it away willy nilly, unless you want to buy new carpeting.  Nice, neat cuts can seamed back together so that the cut is unnoticeable or almost so.  Use a sharp utility knife and a straight edge.

The critical factor when drying things is the actual air movement.  You would be better off directing fans directly at the floor than putting one in the window.  If you have it, run the air conditioning to lower the humidity in your home.  Just drop it down a few degrees below room temperature, so it runs and helps pull moisture out of the air.  You don't have to turn your house into a meat cooler. ;-)
Posted 2015-06-13T22:07:14+0000  by Adam444
A very common problem Stitch!

Like Adam, I always recommend drying for several days before deciding how to repair the damage.

It is possible that you have a wood sub-floor.

Plywood is exactly what the name describes ... layers or wood glued and pressed into sheets.

Once the glue between layers becomes wet enough to swell, it may take considerable dry-time for it to shrink back into place ... if it even will.

I also like Adam's suggestion for carefully removing the carpet.

Once removed, you should be able to see what is causing the swelling.

If you discover plywood sub-floor that is separating, you might consider spot-replacing that section before replacing the carpet.

HOW TO:

Locate the framing studs and make your cuts so the repair piece will rest on and attach to the studs.

Set your saw blade for a shallow cut ... just deep enough to cut the sub-floor without cutting anything underneath.

And, screw or nail your replacement piece into the studs.

Finally, use contact cement to anchor your carpet to the floor.

PREVENT FUTURE DAMAGE:

Maintain a gravity-feed passive drain on your air conditioner to carry water outside.

You might consider including a small port when you repair your floor.
Posted 2015-06-18T15:25:31+0000  by Pat_HD_ATL
 
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