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I have a home built in the 1940's. The main floor creaks a lot and more squeaking and creaks seem to spring up in new places all the time.

Is there an easy way to stop the squeaking and creaking? I don't necessarily need to prevent future annoyances, but I would like to stop the loudest creaking now.

The basement ceiling (bottom of main floor) is mostly exposed (if that helps).

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See also diy.stackexchange.com/questions/392/… –  ChrisF Aug 3 '11 at 11:52
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The solution depends on the type of flooring you have. Carpet? Hardwood? Tile? –  mohlsen Aug 3 '11 at 19:59

4 Answers 4

The main cause of wood floors squeaking is wood shrinkage around the nails. If you can localize the areas that are the worst, a common way to minimize squeaks is to drive screws up from the bottom through the subfloor into the hardwood. Be absolutely sure to use screws that are long enough to grab the hardwood, but short enough not to stick through.

If you do not have hardwood floors then you'll have to decide among a few different techniques appropriate for specific floor coverings, ie. carpet, tile, vinyl etc.

With carpet, for instance, there are special breakaway screws (such as these made by McFeely's) that can be installed from above. With tile or vinyl, the screw from under method is often the way to go.

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Would cross bracing under the floor help? –  Tester101 Aug 3 '11 at 12:26

I have used "Counter-Snap" through vinyl and carpet, and it worked great.

All it takes is to locate the squeak, insert the patented “snap off” screw into the fixture, drill it down and let it snap off.

enter image description here

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also described here: diy.stackexchange.com/questions/392/… –  mohlsen Aug 3 '11 at 20:00

I just finished fixing squeaks in hardwood floors my 1950's house. Most of the squeaks were caused by gaps between sub-floor and joists. I just inserted wood shims in between ( I bought them in Home depot for 5 bucks). Have somebody walk or jump on the area where the squeak is, and if you can see sub-floor movement, just stick shim in there. Do not overpush them, because it will cause floor to raise too much.

Hope this helps.

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For a temporary fix, use some talcum powder. Work the powder into the joints between boards with a paintbrush and sweep away any excess.

http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/photos/0,,20447746_20886389,00.html ThisOldHouse.com

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Please add a little more detail here, like where you use the talcum powder, how you apply it etc. –  Niall C. Mar 22 '13 at 22:34
    
+1 for old-school hax. –  Mazura Oct 8 at 18:32

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