Is a floor repair required? A reader question

A reader writes “faulty fitting on the dishwasher was discovered over Xmas dinner.. the new subfloor of 2 yrs is swollen in front of the dishwasher.. Flooring man wants “several hundreds” . today I have a heater in the dishwasher space ,

My question is if we dry out the subfloor through the lino would the swelling go down some .. so we don’t need the repair.

Insurance has some issues as we had a claim two years ago.
and if we claimed now they take us off the Mobile Home policy and go on Special Risk and 1000 deductible..

If it wont bother us.. Is it okay just to dry it out and proceed with hooking up dishwasher again.. th patch would be probaby 4ft by 4ft… but if we can save hundreds letting it dry.. that would be great.. not a flood leak.. just the faulty fitting split but we dont know how long ago it started dripping. Thank you.”

I doubt the flooring will level much even when dry. On the other hand, it’s your house so if you are comfortable living with it, I don’t see any reason not to. If you can get the subfloor completely dry there will not be additional damage. You may have to work on that for a while because it is not gong to dry quickly if it has vinyl or some other floor covering that won’t let water through it.

If the floor starts to fail completely to the point you worry about falling through you need to fix it or have it fixed. In your situation this might be a great time to study my floor repair suggestions and plan to do it yourself. A 4′ x 4′ section means you would not have to work with a huge piece of plywood to make the repair. Since the floor is already damaged there is no harm in drilling a few holes to see exactly where the floor joists are located. That will tell you how big an area and exactly where you will have to patch.

The patch does not have to be the same material as the original. With a good plywood subfloor repair you would have enough strength to support a ceramic tile surface. That would have the advantage of being water resistant. You could also think about wood laminate, although it wouldn’t be as water resistant.