Fixing Squeaky Floors from Above

A second method for fixing squeaky floors is from above rather than below, as written about in a previous article how to fix squeaky floorboards. Start by removing the carpet from above the area of flooring which is squeaking, if you have a hardwood floor then obviously this step can be skipped and you can move on to finding the joist and boards that are to blame for the intolerable noise. When carpeted however, you’ve got a decision to make on how to remove the carpet, either pulling it up from the edge to the point of the squeak or cutting a small section of your carpet away and relaying it using a carpet adhesives after fixing the squeak. You could also use carpet screws that penetrate the carpet backing and secure the boards to the joist, although this method is as if you’re working blindfolded and almost leaving it up to chance whether you actually secure the boards to the joist.


Walk around the squeaky area until you find the exact spot of the squeak. Mark the spot by placing a small object on top and should you have a carpeted room, consider the options you have for removing the carpet from the area without damaging it. For best results and an unnoticeable fix you will either pull the carpet up from the nearest edge or a natural joining seam rather than cutting it.


Once you have removed the carpet from above the squeak point or if you’ve hardwood floors the next step is to locate the nearest joist. You can do this either by vision through the gaps of the boards or sound using a wooden or rubber mallet and tapping the flooring around the squeaking point listening for the change in sound. The sound when tapping above a joist will be a solid dull knock as oppose to an echoing empty noise created when tapping just the boards. To ensure you have located the joist drill a 2-3mm pilot hole through the board and into the joist, most boards are no thicker than 15mm so you will soon notice if you are drilling into a joist or not.


Once you’re sure you’ve located the nearest joist to the squeak you can move on to securing it. If you haven’t drilled pilot holes from the previous step then now is the time to do so. Drill the guide holes with a maximum diameter of 3mm through the boards, subflooring and into the joist. Use heavy – duty wood screws of an appropriate length to go through the floorboard, subflooring and into the joist by no less than 30mm.


Now that you have screwed the boards down and checked the intolerable squeaking has stopped you can fill the screw head holes with plastic wood filler. This step is more important if working on hardwood floors than carpeted floors, because your repairs will be left uncovered. Making sure to choose a wood filler that is the closest colour match to your wooden floor is also an inportant part of finishing the job with great results, various shades of both light and dark colour fillers are available from most DIY stores and online hardware shops.


If you have repaired squeaking boards under a carpeted floor, you will now need to relay the carpet using adhesive, while reattaching it to the carpet gripper rods at the edge(s) of the room.


Now you’ve fixed the squeaky floor, why not read our post on how to draught proof wooden floors