I have carpet in my bedroom that when you walk on certain spots makes lots of noise. I am tossing the carpet and putting down hardwood flooring. I am using 3/4 in prefinished oak in widths of 3 1/4 inch.

I dont want my shiny new floor to be squeaky. What should I do to kill any noise in the current floor, sub floor, and new hardwood floor?

I have joists at 16" on center with 1/2 plywood layer on top and nailed down. This is my current floor after I got rid of the carpet that used to be there.

What do I do now, what steps do I take, what materials/ tools do I need?

EDIT: thanks all, i will 100% use screws and drive them in near each nail already in the plywood to hold things together well. then i will go around and knock each nail in good. then add the paper and install hardwood on top.


6 Answers 6


Use screws instead of nails to hold the plywood down. If you can, screw it into the joists, not just the existing floor. You can also put down some glue betwen the plywood & subfloor to prevent the plywood from moving at all. Use tongue-and-groove plywood if possible.

If that doesn't help (and you should be able to do that & check to see if you still have squeaks before putting down the hardwood) you might need to beef up the joists, or add additional bracing, from underneath. Not so hard if the ceiling below is open, a lot of work if it's finished.


We have talked about this topic several times. Definitely screw down the existing subfloor and any new underlayment or use coated treaded nails in your air nailer. Hit the joists and keep screws and nails at 10 to 12 inches apart throughout the field, with special attention to joints and corners. I don't recommended glue between subfloor layers as it can cause buckling of dislike materials. Instead of glue, simply add a layer of red rosin paper to keep the woods from rubbing against each other. The same is true before you put down your new hardwood. The most common cause of squeaks are loose nails in old shrunken wood and loose fitting wood on wood. Good luck.


Squeaky floors are usually caused by loose floorboards. The boards rub against each other when you walk over them, which causes the squeak.

To remedy this situation, lift the carpet and locate the loose boards. Then just simply screw or nail the board down (being careful not to hit any pipes/wires that might be threaded through the joists).

For your new floor you need to make sure that there's no movement of boards against each other.


I was watching a home show where they fixed a squeeky floor underneath a carpet. They used these screws that had break away heads called Squeeek-No-More. You drive in the screw using a holding fixture and depth stop, and then pop the head off with the provided tool.

(source: squeakyfloor.com) .

They break below the carpet so your bare foot would never detect it. Those might work on your floor, carpeted or bare.

  • I attempted to use this product - Squeeek No More and it requires a little bit of guesswork to detect the correct floorboard. So what happened in my case is that I ended up using more screws than required.
    – abhi
    Jan 31, 2015 at 19:31

Also, adding finish nails at opposing angles (in a "V" shape) over the squeky area can help. They won't be able to pull out very easily by themselves since they are in at opposing angles. The squeakiness is usually caused by wood moving on the nails, or the nails moving up and down. Another way to eliminate the squeaking would be to add screws to the subfloor-to-joist mounting that is already there.


You can also put a bit of powdered graphite in the joint between the tongue and groove of adjacent floorboards if they squeak. Works a treat.

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