How to Fix Squeaky Floors
Squeaky floors can be annoying, especially in the middle of the night when everything is quiet. They announce the movement of a pet, your kids, or even yourself. They are also not just common with old houses. Newer homes face this challenge as well. However, any homeowner will tell you they prefer a quiet floor. Fortunately, fixing creaky stairs and squeaky floors is not challenging.
Causes of Squeaky Floors
Before you start repairing, it would help to know the common causes of squeaky floors.
- If the subfloor fasteners pull in and out of the floors underlying joists, the floor is likely to creak.
- The nails and staples no longer hold the floorboard firmly.
- When two floorboards rub against each other, they are likely to produce a creaking sound.
- When uneven joists rub against the subfloor, they cause a creaking sound.
- Reduced levels of humidity can dry the wood, causing it to squeak. If that is the case, you might need a humidifier.
Here are some ways you can fix those squeaks.
Place a Shim into Gaps
If you can access the space below your floors via a crawl space or a basement, it will be easier to silence those squeaky floors. Go to the area under the squeaky floor and have someone walk across the floor. Listen carefully to pinpoint the exact location where the squeak is coming from. Using a flashlight, check if there is a space between the joist and the subfloor. If you see a gap, even if it’s small, get a thin shim and glue it on the gap using a carpenter’s glue.
Use Construction Adhesive for Long Gaps
When you find the gap along the floor joist is extended, using wood shims will not be as effective. However, Soen Hardwood recommends using a construction adhesive to fill the long gaps, voids, and cracks. A caulking gun can be handy here where you can force the construction adhesive into the gap directly. Check whether there are spaces on each side of the joist and fill them both. When the adhesive hardens, you will not hear any creaking noise.
Lubricate Your Floorboards
It can be hard to eliminate noise when there is no space underneath the floorboards to crawl under. In such circumstances, pour a dry lubricant like talcum powder, powdered graphite, and lock lubricant where the issue is coming from. After that, place a cloth and walk over it so that the lubricant is driven into the cracks. It will help reduce that friction between the woods, eliminating the squeaky sound.
Add some Blocks To the Noisy Joists
You can quieten the creaky floors by inserting a solid block between the floor joists. The block will have to be the same dimension as the floor joists. The blocks should not be too tight. Instead, they should fit snugly between the joists. You can use a construction adhesive for the blocks, then when they hold, drive 3-inch drywall screws to secure the block.
The above methods will restore some quiet back into your home when it comes to squeaky floors. However, if you are not sure what to do, call a flooring contractor to help with the job to avoid messing things up.