How to dry out a flooded kitchen?

Discussion in 'Plumbers' Talk' started by Weetabix, Nov 24, 2021 at 9:49 PM.

  1. Weetabix

    Weetabix Member


    I'm currently renovating a small cottage.

    Last weekend, the corroded water pipe coming into the kitchen burst and flooded it a good 4" before the plumber turned up and turned off the water from the street.

    Luckily, there is currently no floor, so most of the water inflitrated into the exposed clay, but I've now got a 3m x 2.5m room that's very muddy underfoot and I need to dry it out before putting in the suspended timber floor.

    My questions are:
    1. Dehumidifiers - how big does it need to be? Can I get away with a domestic one - although this will need empyting and I'm not at the property full time yet...
    2. Should I hire a massive industrial one? They're about £400 a week which I just can't afford.
    3. Should I use fans?
    4. How long will it take to dry out?

    Any ideas/experience welcome - thanks.

    Attached Files:

  2. Teki

    Teki Screwfix Select

    I'm guessing you don't have any insurance sorted for the property yet?
  3. Weetabix

    Weetabix Member

    Nope - any ideas on how to fix it?
  4. quasar9

    quasar9 Screwfix Select

    It’s tricky at this time of the year ! Dehumidifier work by condensing out the moisture in the air but at this time of the year with low temperatures, the moisture levels will be low especially with no heating in the building.

    you need heat of some sort - you can hire industrial heaters but they are expensive to run.

    some domestic dehumidifier can have a plastic pipe attached so it can be run continuously without the need to empty the tank.

    fans may work slowly, but you need to vent out the moisture which means leaving window open, which has its own security issues.

    hopefully most of the water will drain down into the soil over the course of a few weeks
    Weetabix likes this.
  5. Weetabix

    Weetabix Member

  6. Weetabix

    Weetabix Member

    How about running an indistrial heater and dehumidifier for a couple of days - do you think that could work - or just hire a heater alone?
    I know it's going to cost $$$ to run, but I have to dry it out....
  7. jonathanc

    jonathanc Screwfix Select

    Quickest answer is to dig it out and refill with recycled mot - crusher run. You’ll wait months for clay to dry
    WillyEckerslike and Weetabix like this.
  8. Weetabix

    Weetabix Member

    ....good idea deep do you reckon would be enough?
  9. Weetabix

    Weetabix Member

    Does anyone else think that digging out would be a good solution? If so, how far down would I need to dig?
  10. jimbobby

    jimbobby Active Member

    If suspended floor going in anyway....put it in and just leave lots of ventilation openings.... till the summer dries the whole thing out.
    Weetabix likes this.
  11. Weetabix

    Weetabix Member

    Thing is - it needs to be stable for me to put the floor in on?
  12. jimbobby

    jimbobby Active Member

    You said suspended floor....
    What type.
    Put loose
    DPM down to work in the room without too much mess.
  13. quasar9

    quasar9 Screwfix Select

    Normally retrofit suspended floors are installed using joist hangers attached to the wall (above DPC), timber joist and than structural floor of choice! Ie wooden boards, chipboard or ply. Assuming you have airbricks at both ends to allow free flow of air below the joists, a requirement if they are to last for good many decades.

    there are concrete suspended floors too but they would not be appropriate here
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2021 at 6:23 PM
  14. Weetabix

    Weetabix Member

    The floor I removed was a floating structure, not attached to the walls on one, yes one brick sitting on the clay - it's *very* basic.
    I've spoken with a builder who has built a similar floating structure and that's what I'm going for...or maybe a wall plate....

    So how far down do you reckon I'd have to dig to pay down something that stable enough to take the load?
  15. quasar9

    quasar9 Screwfix Select

    How far to dig down ? Only a structural engineer can advise after checking the soil conditions and making an exploratory hole and working out the net load on each of the brick piers . Any reason for your choice of a floating floor rather than a suspended ?
  16. Weetabix

    Weetabix Member

    No reason really, just that that's the way it was.....
  17. MGW

    MGW Screwfix Select

    My cheap Lidi AC has a dehumidifier function, and it will dry the air. But de-watering is very different to dehumidifier, likely no damp course so water will naturally soak away with time, all the dehumidifier does is speed it up.

    Back to basics if there is ventilation and the room is warmer than outside it will dry out, speeding up the process may cause the surface to crack, and be unable to take the weight of the floor without movement.

    I would look at paving slabs to spread the weight anyway, ones made on a press, not cheap ones, we at work have just completed renovating a wood floor over a soil base, it had sunk over the years, due to being a heritage building our options were limited, but much depends on how much the floor is raised, 20210609_134031.jpg we could crawl under the floor and there was free air under the floor, so it would have dried even after the new supports were installed.

    With my mothers old house we laid polystyrene, then plywood, and then under floor heating mat, and finally tiles, the ground was around 12 inches below finished level, and clearly polystyrene will crush, so very little weight per square inch. We can only guess what you have, mothers house was built 1954, and the concrete floor was a poor dry lean, it was cement put on floor and watered with a watering can so formed a skin no more. Porous quarry tiles were laid on this, and washing day the floor would be flooded, and mopped up, moving washing between the twin tubs always caused water on the floor, it was mopped up and dried within 1/2 hour as is was absorbed into the floor. Even when the Bendix was bolted to the floor, (1960's) it regularly erupted coving the floor with soapy water, back then used soap, not special detergents for washing machines, water brushed out of back door, then mopped.

    I think you are worrying for no reason, I would not even try to dry out, just put down some porous surface so over time it can dry out, and ensure weight is spread over large area.
    Weetabix and jimbobby like this.
  18. jimbobby

    jimbobby Active Member

    Small room, no need for cathedral style supports. Use wall ledgers opposite or hangers.
    Ensure good ventilation flow and forget about it.
    Weetabix likes this.

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