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After 3 or 4 years of installing laminate floors these small gaps started to appear between the planks:

laminate planks with gaps

I'd like to better understand two things:

  1. Why/how do these gaps come to be:

    • temperature changes?
    • uneven floor base?
    • something else?
  2. how to fix these gaps without disassembling the whole floor?

I found a couple of tools, but am unsure whether it's the right way, or maybe there is a different, better way.

  1. Is there a way to prevent these from appearing again?
  • Do the gaps appear in the summer? Solid hardwood floors exhibit gaps in the winter, but swell in the summer due to changes in humidity and temperature. – gbronner Mar 25 '18 at 18:56
  • these are laminate (not solid hardwood) floors. no, these gaps appear at winter time as well as in the summer. once they appear, they stay. – tolitius Mar 25 '18 at 19:17
  • Was the floor intended to be glued together? Was it properly acclimated to the building before installation? – isherwood Mar 25 '18 at 22:28
  • was not intended to be glued. yes, it spent a couple of days in a room to acclimate before we installed it several years ago. – tolitius Mar 25 '18 at 23:03
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According to this reference: shrinking laminate floors, laminate floors float on the subfloor, and can slide lengthwise under the baseboards.

Their recommended solution was to glue the ends of the boards and push them together to close the gaps.

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