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Home » Why Does My Floor Creak? (Solved)

Why Does My Floor Creak? (Solved)

  • Zak 
why my floor creaks, creaky floors, floors that creak

Have you noticed that certain parts of your floor creak or squeak when you step on them? If yes, then that is a sign of loose boards. In this article, we will tell you why your floor is creaking and how to fix this problem relatively quickly.

The creaking noise is caused by the movement and bounciness of loose boards. Any floor can creak, but staircases and hardwood floors are the most common culprits. Although floor creaks don’t signal structural damage, the sound is very annoying, especially when trying to sneak downstairs for a midnight snack. Fortunately, fixing a creaking floor is a simple task.

The quickest and easiest way to fix a creaking floor is by first identifying the main cause of why your floor creaks.

So, to help you with that, I’m going to share a list of reasons why your floor creaks, along with the relevant solutions.

5 Causes For A Creaky Floor

why my floor creaks, creaky floors, floors that creak

1. Uneven subfloor 

One of the top reasons why your floor is creaking is because the subfloor is uneven.

If your subfloor is uneven, it could leave gaps between your floating floor, causing it to create this irritating noise.

The creaking noise can also be created if the underlay has not been fitted correctly, leaving spaces or gaps between the floor and the subfloor.

The solution to this problem is to lift the floor to access the subfloor and even the surface. You can also fix the problem by injecting epoxy into the gaps. However, this solution will only work if the gaps are small.

2. Use of incorrect nails

Another reason why your floor creaks when you step on it is because the nails used to secure the flooring and the floor joist are not strong or long enough to keep the floor secure.

As a result, the floor moves back and forth when pressure is applied, thus producing a squeaking noise.

If the creak in the floor is caused by the use of incorrect nails, you can fix the problem by removing the current nails and replacing them with ones that are strong and long enough to secure the floorboard.

3. Excessive moisture

A floor that is exposed to leaks or an overly humid room can swell and produce a creaking sound when someone steps on it. All floors usually expand and contract because of changes in moisture and temperature levels.

A floor that is exposed to excessive moisture can change shape, causing gaps and bends that make the floorboard produce a creaking noise.

The best solution to this problem is to remove the damaged floorboards and install new ones.

Make sure you leave at least a 10mm gap for expansion and contraction.

Add a moisture-blocking underlayment on the floor to help prevent the floorboards from making noise when they rub against each other.

Also, ensure that you clean up any leaks or spills on the floorboard immediately.

4. Gaps between the floor and joists

Joists play a crucial role in holding floorboards in place.

If joists are weak or damaged, then they will not be able to perform their work properly, and this could create gaps between the underside of the subfloors and the top of the floor joists.

To fix this problem, access the top of the floor joists and then apply some glue.

Put a thin wood shim in the gap.

If the gaps are a result of the floor joist shrinking or bending, then you need to install a long plank of timber on the affected joist, but at a slightly raised height, to allow it to reach the subfloor and fill the gap.

5. The flooring has not acclimatized

Acclimation is the process of adjusting or conditioning the moisture content of wood flooring to the environment in which it is expected to perform.

Acclaiming is a very important process that allows the planks to be unified in the humidity and temperature that are identical to the conditions of the room where they will be installed.

Failure to properly prepare for acclimation before installation may compromise the integrity of the floor, causing it to start creaking.

Excessive warping, gapping, and cupping can occur later, causing the floor to creak.

If your floor creak is caused by a failure to acclimatize the wood flooring, the only solution you have is to replace the current flooring with a new one.

However, to prevent the problem from occurring again, you need to give your new wood flooring enough time to acclimate before installing it.

Other Questions You May Have

1. How do you stop a floor from creaking?

Prevention is better than cure.

So, when installing wooden floor boards, be sure that the subfloor is even, a moisture-blocking underlayment is installed, and the correct-size nails are used for securing everything in place.

If none of these solutions work, then it may be best to remove the boards that are damaged or warped and replace them with new ones.

2. Are squeaky floors safe?

Yes, for the most part, squeaky floors are safe because they don’t necessarily indicate structural damage.

However, this is usually the case in single-story homes.

In double-story homes, squeaky floors on the upper level may be an early sign of concern, and you may need to consult with a professional to rule out any growing structural issues.

3. Do squeaky floors mean water damage?

In many cases, yes, squeaky floors could mean water damage has occurred.

This is especially true if everything was adequately placed, installed, and secured.

Upon inspection, you’re most likely to find that water damage has occurred at some point and was left untreated for too long, causing a squeaky floor.

Final Thoughts

Floor creaking is a common problem that affects all types of flooring. However, it mostly affects wood flooring, which is why you should consider carpeting and/or tiles if such options are available at your disposal.

Fortunately, a vast majority of these problems that cause a floor to creak are simple and can be easily fixed even without the help of a professional.

Just follow the solutions in this article, and you should be able to fix the problem without breaking the bank.

But if you’re not too skilled with tools and flooring, perhaps you should consider getting someone to fix it for you.

With that being said, I hope this article on why does my floor creak was insightful and easy to understand. If you’d like to read more useful articles on flooring, check out the following link:

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