Insurance company wants repair; the pros say replace

Q: We have a prefinished wood floor in our laundry, hall and kitchen. It all flows together. Recently our washing machine leaked all over the floor, out to the kitchen. I called the insurance company and they recommended we go with one of their Premier Service companies. A man was sent out from a Premier Service co. and said the floor needed to be replaced.

He measured, took photos and a board to be sent to a lab. The claim representative, without ever having seen the floor, has decided to just pay for repairs to the floor. The flooring company stands firm the floor will not be returned to its original condition. Fillers will need to be used, the boards will not fully match, and the floor will not look like it did prior to the incident.

A: If it involves a large enough area, which it sounds like, I would definitely replace the floor. For one thing, all areas that were wet need to be removed to allow the sub floor to fully dry out. Your floor would have expanded beyond its original size, and even if by chance it went back to original specs, it would take considerable time to dry out, the entire floor would have to be sanded. The only practical thing to do is start over. That is why we pay insurance and I would make enough noise until they do what is right. A few thousand dollars is really nothing to them.