Floorboards creak and squeak increasingly

The creaking of floorboards can not be completely avoided. Even very old floorboards still "live" and the wood can develop noises through its structure. However, if the noise becomes disturbing and getting worse, it is worthwhile getting to the bottom of the cause and getting the best possible cure.

Determining the causes

If a plank flooring develops over time as it enters a louder and creaking squeal, an inventory of on-site conditions must be made. When looking for the potential cause, check the following points regarding the floor structure:

  • Type of fixing of planks (screws, nails, glue)
  • Condition of planks (breaks, cracks)
  • Distance to the ground or contact with the ground
  • Distance of the boards to each other and to bounding walls
  • Condition of the fillings with closed joints

From the result, which components are in contact (could) and which structural damages are present, the cause should be limited to possible involved materials:

  • Wood rubs against metal
  • Wood rubs against wood
  • Wood rubs on the ground
  • Wood rubs on joint filling


Often, nails and screws have loosened. First, the Nachnageln or screws should be done. Rusty metal fittings must be replaced. When replacing, nails or slightly larger diameter screws should be used to increase fixation. An additional gluing of the wooden floor and the attachment points can prevent the creaking plank movements.


If there are breaks or cracks within individual planks, the noises can be caused by rubbing together. The damage must be leveled and in case of complete breakage or splintering only the removal of the defective plank helps.

design flaw

Joint fillings without sufficient elasticity must be removed and renewed. If the planks on the surface such as screed, OSB boards, retaining strips, concrete, construction foam partially or completely rest, special lubricants help to prevent noise. With impact and edge contact as well as with the meeting of tongue and groove, warm linseed oil can help.

Tips & Tricks

Many do-it-yourselfers try to eliminate the creaking of floorboards by injecting construction foam. With this procedure you risk that the construction foam removes some noise sources and creates new ones in parallel. Preferably, friction reduction is always preferable to filling cavities.

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