If a pipe under your kitchen sink froze, burst, and flooded into the cabinet, then it is important to get it dried out as soon as possible!
By quickly drying out the cabinet, you will likely be able to save it. However, the water damage restoration process needs to happen immediately to prevent wood rot, swelling, and mold growth.
To have the best chance of salvaging your kitchen cabinet, follow each of these steps:
Step 1: Stop the Flow of Water
Before you do anything else, you must stop the flow of water into the cabinet. To do so, turn off the local shutoff valve if your sink has one. If not, then you will need to turn off the water to your whole house.
Step 2: Turn Off the Electrical Power if Necessary
If there is an outlet in the wet cabinet for a dishwasher or garbage disposal, then you need to turn off the power to the receptacle before you do anything else.
Flip the breaker for the sink area of your kitchen in the power panel, then use an outlet tester to ensure the power is truly turned off.
Step 3: Remove Everything from the Wet Cabinet
Take everything out of the affected cabinet. This gives you more room to work. It also ensures no water is trapped under items inside of the cabinet.
Step 4: Survey the Damage
Now that the water and power are turned off, it's time to survey the damage. Not only do you need to check inside of the cabinet for water, but also:
- the floor under the cabinet
- the wall behind the cabinet
- the toe kick and trim pieces
This is important because if you don't thoroughly dry every wet surface, then you will end up with mold growth later on.
Step 5: Clean Up the Standing Water and Thoroughly Dry Out the Cabinet
Using a shop vac and towels, remove all of the standing water. Dry everything as well as you can by hand and then turn on fans to facilitate the rest of the drying process.
If it is warm and dry outside, opening up the windows can really help speed things up.
If the cabinet is wet around the door hinges, then remove the doors. If you don't remove them, then the weight can cause the cabinet to warp. If this happens, then the doors will never fit correctly again.
Step 6: Inspect for Damage Once Everything is Dry
Finally, once everything has dried out, then it's time to take a good look at the cabinets and surrounding areas to ensure nothing has unrepairable damage.
If so, then it will need to be replaced. However, if this is the first time your cabinet has flooded, then following the previous steps should be all that's necessary to save the cabinet. For more information, contact someone like Great Lakes Abatement Co., Inc in your area.