The creaking of the floor is a strong indication of old flooring. However, there are conditions under which even laminate will creak. Especially in older buildings, creaking and squeaking floorboards are a common issue.
Most creaking and squeaking sounds can be traced back to individual planks that have begun to spring due to cracks or breaks in the wood.
Naturally, there is also a method for dealing with creaky floors. Success can be achieved in various ways, each of which is context-dependent.
Why does your wooden floor squeak?
Wooden floors that make annoying noises can be very annoying to those living in the home. The annoyance of a creaking floor is only part of the problem, as tiny cracks in the wood usually cause the squeaking. Pain in your feet is unpleasant no matter what causes it, even if it’s just larger splinters sticking out.
You must first determine whether or not the noises are coming from a floating floor. Or if the floor is made of planks screwed down to a subfloor.
These two cases have opposed solutions. Floating floors frequently require adjusting the tightness of something or making it smaller, while screwed floors frequently require fixing something that has become loose.
Squeak on Laminate and hardwood floors
Let’s pretend the floor is installed without any subfloor. In this case, an adequate edge joint must be ensured during installation to allow the wood floor to expand and contract with temperature and humidity changes without squeaking.
Are the floorboards rubbing against a heating pipe because the joints between them weren’t big enough? To determine the root of the issue, having a helper walk the floor as you search for it is helpful.
Floating laminate flooring is simple to remove, reposition, and reinstall. When the laminate is properly reinstalled, almost any issue disappears. However, glued laminate doesn’t give you this choice.
Now imagine that you have removed the floor and can measure the height differences between the rooms (it is best to use a straight edge and measure as many places in the room as possible).
The leveling compound will help you achieve a flat surface on which to install the new flooring.
Fix creaky laminate floors
Laminate flooring is not resistant to floor creaks. Besides the floorboards themselves, which usually make noise because they are broken or too springy, there are some other things going on here.
- uneven ground (this is often overlooked but is a very common cause
- of unclean click connections
- to little wall clearance of the laminate (if it creaks from the start)
When laying laminate, the floor must be perfectly flat. This article teaches how to level a floor and fix minor elevation differences.
Shortening and trimming
Allow the floor covering plenty of room to expand and contract during the floating installation process. If your laminate floor is making noise, it’s probably because some planks are too long.
A multi-tool or oscillating vibration saw is perfect for the job. You can easily trim off fine details and reach into tight spaces.
- Remove baseboards
- look for problem areas
- crop areas
- Reattach skirting boards
Fasten the creaking floorboards
One option is to secure the boards one at a time if you notice any creaking. Use nails that you drive at an angle into the floorboard to secure them.
Alternately, the floor structure can be designed so individual floorboards cannot bounce, which is especially useful if there are many creaking floorboards.
Relaying the floorboards over a chipboard subfloor is one option for this.
Alternatively, dry screed can be laid below the floorboards, and the boards reinstalled on top, though this is a costly and time-consuming option (however, it is also very effective).
Nail or screw the floorboards
A plank severely torn or cracked in one spot can be repaired with a screw. Nailing it is a recommendation from many experts.
However, the right amount of pressure can be applied to the wood much more precisely with a screw. If that still doesn’t work, you can always unscrew the screw and try again.
- Screw in the screws at an angle
- Slightly countersink the screws
- at least two screws per damaged area
Pad the floorboards
In the past, many wooden floors were installed directly onto a screed subfloor. Today’s standard of impact sound insulation is often obviously missing.
Even if you screw down a wooden floor directly to the subfloor, there may not be enough to prevent moisture from seeping through. Unfortunately, you’ll be the one to do the legwork and make the full floor recording.
- Glue masking tape to each floorboard and number it
- Unscrew the floorboards
- Lay the screed floor with impact sound insulation
- Pad the substructure with rubber-sealing tape
- Screw the boards back on in the correct order