What to Do If Your Floor Starts to Creak

May 31, 2024

Creaky floors can be a frustrating and annoying problem for homeowners. Whether you’re tiptoeing around late at night or entertaining guests during the day, the last thing you want is a floor that makes noise with every step. But fear not! In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore what causes creaky floors and provide practical solutions on how to fix them.

Understanding the Causes of Creaky Floors

Natural Wear and Tear

Over time, the materials that make up your flooring, such as wood or laminate, can wear down and become loose, leading to creaks and squeaks.

Subfloor Movement

Changes in temperature and humidity levels can cause the subfloor to expand and contract, resulting in movement that creates noise.

Assessing the Severity of the Problem

Identifying Problem Areas

Walk around your home and listen for creaks and squeaks. Pay attention to areas where the noise is most pronounced, as these are likely the problem areas that need attention.

Checking for Structural Issues

In some cases, creaky floors may be a symptom of underlying structural issues, such as a sagging floor joist or inadequate support beams. If you suspect structural problems, it’s best to consult a professional for a thorough inspection.

DIY Solutions for Fixing Creaky Floors

Tightening Loose Floorboards

If your floorboards are loose, try tightening them using screws or nails. Locate the squeaky spot and drive a screw or nail through the floorboard into the subfloor below to secure it in place.

Lubricating Squeaky Joints

For floors with squeaky joints, such as hardwood or laminate flooring, applying a lubricant can help reduce friction and eliminate noise. Use a silicone-based lubricant or powdered graphite to lubricate the joints and minimize creaks.

Adding Reinforcement

To reinforce creaky floorboards, you can add additional support underneath the subfloor. Install blocking between joists or add bridging to stabilize the floor structure and reduce movement.

Professional Solutions for Fixing Creaky Floors

Floor Refinishing

If your floors are old and worn, refinishing them can help eliminate creaks and restore their appearance. Sanding down uneven surfaces and applying a fresh coat of finish can improve the overall condition of the flooring and reduce noise.

Subfloor Repair

For more severe cases of creaky floors, professional subfloor repair may be necessary. A contractor can assess the extent of the damage and make any necessary repairs to the subfloor to eliminate noise and improve stability.

Floor Replacement

In some situations, the best solution for creaky floors may be to replace them entirely. Consider upgrading to newer flooring materials that are more durable and resistant to wear and tear, such as hardwood or luxury vinyl plank.

Preventive Measures for Creaky Floors

Maintaining Proper Humidity Levels

Maintaining consistent humidity levels in your home can help prevent creaky floors caused by subfloor movement. Use a humidifier or dehumidifier as needed to keep humidity levels within the optimal range.

Regular Maintenance

Performing regular maintenance on your floors can help prevent creaks and prolong their lifespan. Keep floors clean and free of debris, and address any signs of wear or damage promptly to prevent further deterioration.


Dealing with creaky floors can be a nuisance, but with the right approach, you can silence those annoying noises and restore peace and quiet to your home. Whether you opt for DIY solutions or enlist the help of professionals, addressing creaky floors promptly can improve the comfort and livability of your space. By understanding the causes of creaky floors and taking proactive measures to address them, you can enjoy a quieter and more enjoyable living environment for years to come.

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