Creaky floorboards can quickly become a household nuisance, especially if they’re hidden under a worn out carpet, or one you’ve simply grown bored of. So, if you think it’s about time to replace your carpet, why not kill two birds with one stone and fix that troublesome floorboard too? You may also have exposed floorboards, but just haven’t plucked up the courage to fix the creaky ones – but it’s not as tricky as it may seem, as our useful guide below should demonstrate!
First things first, find the creaky floorboard! If it seems secure (don't forget to check the adjacent boards too) then it could be a relatively quick fix, as this means the noise is due to the friction between the floorboards themselves, or the nails and screws in them. To rectify this, simply sprinkle some talcum powder or chalk through any surrounding cracks to stop them rubbing together, which should sort the problem.
If the creaking persists - or if the problematic floorboard seems loose - then it’s likely the floorboard has come loose from the supporting joist, so you’ll need to add some new fixings. Before you do this, walk over the floorboard again to identify which part needs to be secured, and be sure to prise up the board to check you won’t be screwing or drilling through any cabling or pipes. Once you are sure it’s safe to proceed, you’ll then need to find the joist, as this is where you’ll be inserting your new fixing.
You can use either nails or screws for the new fixing, however we’d recommend going with screws, as these will give you a firmer hold. With hammering nails you also run the risk of loosening other nails in the board due to the vibration it causes, so we think it’s best to stick to drilling. If you’re wondering which screws you should use for the new fixing, we’d go for countersunk slot head screws, as crosshead screws are more likely to become blocked, which makes it difficult to remove them later.
The final step is to drill a clearance hole with a 2mm wood bit, making sure you countersink it to ensure a flush finish when the new screw is in place. And there you have it, a perfectly functional floorboard and a bit of peace and quiet at long last!