How to repair your floorboards Featured Timber & Woodwork Introduction As time goes on; your floorboards might start needing a bit of care and attention. If they’ve dried out or worked loose from their fittings, they could have started to creak. And if they’ve split, warped, shrunk or broken, you may need to replace them completely. Alternatively, you could have to lift some boards to reach cables or pipes that run underneath. How you do this depends on whether your floor is made of tongue-and-groove boards (which are slotted together before being nailed to the joists) or square-edged boards (which are simply butted together). Whether you want to repair or replace your boards, here are some helpful hints on how to do so. It’s also worth remembering that floor coverings can hide a multitude of sins. So if you’ve taken up your carpet to sand and seal your wooden floor, check for loose boards before you start the job. Tools & materials required expanded,How to fix creaking floorboards The reason floorboards become creaky is because their fixing nails get loose and the board isn’t firmly attached any more. There are two ways to fix them depending on their condition. If the floorboard is in good condition, you can take out the nails and screw it down using the existing nail holes. If it’s badly damaged at the sides and corners, you’ll need to make new holes for the screws. But before you start drilling, do make sure you lift the board and check for pipes and cables. Step 1 You’ll need to find which part of the floorboard is loose by walking over it and seeing where it moves. If the board is damaged and you can’t re-nail in the old holes, you’ll have to take the nails out with pincers and then lift the board to check for cables and pipes. Mark any you find on the board in pencil to show where they should go. Step 2 Next, drill a clearance hole as near to the edge as you can in a part of the board that’s not damaged. Then put a screw in the hole and screw it down tightly, checking that it sits below the surface. Step 3 If you can see the screw head above the surface, take it out, countersink the hole (so the head doesn’t stick out) and screw the board down again. Step 4 Still notice some squeaks after fixing the boards down again? Try sprinkling talcum powder along the joint and work it in with a knife. After a while, the annoying sound should stop.