With the colder weather, I’m getting floor squeaks in several areas of my house. It reminds me of my grandparents’ home! Can you help?
I sure hope so. I know what you mean about the older homes, as my grandparents had the same noise, and every time I hear these squeaks, I think of them. I’ve also found that the colder winter increases the volume of the squeaks.
There are several remedies, depending upon the flooring. If you have carpeting, I’ve found a great product to help. It is basically a special screw made for this. The screw goes right through the carpet and subfloor, then into the joist. When it gets into the joist, the screw head breaks off at just the right height, leaving no part of the screw above the subfloor. Home Depot may carry these screws, called “Squeeeek No More”. If you have trouble finding them in a store, give them a call at 1-800-459-8428 or visit them on the web at www.123itsdone.com. They also have videos on the website that show you how to use them.
The hardest part is finding the joist and doing this takes a little time and guesswork. Begin in the area where the squeak is. Use a hammer and softly tap around the area to see if you can find where the joist is by listening to the difference in the sound. This is similar to tapping on a wall to see where the stud is, but just a little harder to hear.
Begin by drilling one of the special screws into the floor. If you haven’t found the joist, the screw will keep on spinning and won’t go down any further. If you didn’t get the joist the first time, leave the screw there, as a marker. Try another screw about two inches from the first, going in a straight line towards an outside wall of the house. You’re trying to find the joist, so you should find one within 24”. If not, go in a 90 degree direction, as the joists must be going the other way.
Once you’ve screwed one of these screws into a joist, you’ll know it, as it will be harder to get the screw in, and the next thing you know, the screw head will break off. Once you know where the joist is, place several screws along this joist and in the area where the squeak is.
Although there are other methods for squeaks in hardwood floors, vinyl floors, and stairs, we’ll have to leave them for another article.