5 Ways to Fix your Squeaky Hardwood Floor

Hardwood Flooring

If you have tried to sneak into the kitchen at night for a glass of milk or a scoop of ice cream without other family members knowing, then you know how surprising it is when you step on a squeaky floorboard. Hardwoods floors are designed to last but one thing every home owner has to contend with is the squeaks and creaks.

They are annoying and disturbing regardless whether the hardwood floors are covered by thick carpet or they are exposed. The good news is that there are ways to fix this problem. Before you begin to fix the problem, it is important to know what the cause is.

a. Winter time contraction is a common problem that causes hardwood floors. As the temperature drops, the air becomes drier causing humidity changes. This results in the wood having moisture and shrinking in size. Contraction causes the squeaking.
b.Loose floor joists cause the hardwood floor to squeak
c.Uneven subflooring is another cause.

Here are 5 ways to fix your squeaky hardwood floor.

1. Use constructive adhesive along extending gaps

Hardwood floors do have gaps that run along the entire joist. While applying shims helps to resolve the squeaking, when it comes to covering a large area, the time take and the amount of shim to be placed will be too much. Instead, one should use constructive adhesive to fill long gaps.
The first thing you need to do is dress up in safety goggles, gloves and protective hair cover. The reason for doing this is to avoid the adhesive from staining the hand, from getting into the eyes (especially the fumes) and from getting into contact with your hair (especially when applying from above.)
Once you have done so, you can begin locating the gaps on your hardwood floor. Purchase the right construction adhesive and begin applying it.

2. Wedge a shim

Majority of homes are designed with basements and upper floors. If the lower floor has squeaking boards, then you can wedge a shim. First and foremost, you need to identify which boards are problematic. You can have one of your children walk over different boards in order to identify them.
For every spot identified, wedge a shim that is coated with carpenter’s glue close to the nearest joist and below the subfloor. The joists are the beams that run across your house supporting the hardwood floor. They can be located easily via the basement or lower floor.

3. Nail a board

Due to age, moisture and other factors, the joists may be affected. This will result in it twisting, warping or deterioration. This causes a space to open up between the joists and the subfloor. This is what causes squeaking when foot pressure is applied.
This problem can be fixed by simply nailing a board alongside the problematic joist. Once you are done, you need to apply the construction adhesive along the top of the wood. This will help it butt against the sub floor. You can also screw in the board.

4. Use short screws driven from the bottom of the hardwood floor

Before driving the short screws into the bottom of the finished floor, you need to have the right equipment and tools. Start by purchasing the right short screws from the nearest store. If it’s your first time to make the purchase, you need to consult the store sales person. You need a cordless drill or driver. If a neighbor has one, you can borrow it for a short time but its best to have your own.
Joists are known to be a major contributor of irritating squeaks and creaks. This is caused by the wood floor rubbing against the underlying plywood subfloor. To eliminate the creaks and the squeaks, you need to drive short screws from the bottom of the subfloor. The short screws will end up into the bottom of the finished flooring eliminating the squeaking.

5. Lubricate the floor boards

If your home has an upper floor, probability of it having hardwood floors is great. This can be a problem especially when a few boards start squeaking and you need to fix them. The problem is the subfloor is covered by ceiling material thus preventing easy access to the joists and the underside of floorboards.
One way of eliminating creaks and squeaks from floor boards especially if you cannot access the underside is to lubricate them. You can use talcum powder, powdered soapstone or powdered graphite. This should be placed between the boards. Once you have done so, you need to place a cloth over the boards. Walk over the boards in order to work the powder into the cracks.
The powder will reduce friction between the floor boards thus eliminating squeaking.

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