Posted on: 13.06.2023 Posted by: Редакция Comments: 0

You’ve just installed a new timber floor, and then suddenly it starts creaking. Timber floors can be a great addition to your home, but when they creak and squeak, you might start to hate them. Should a new timber floor creak?

A new timber floor may creak initially, but it should stop after a few months. If a creaking or squeaking persists or gets worse over time, there is likely a problem. Uneven subfloors, excessive moisture, and poor installation are examples of things that can cause a creaking floor.

Let’s take a closer look at why a new timber floor creaks.

Can a New Timber Floor Creak?

New timber floors, like any other type of flooring, tend to creak and squeak. The sound you hear is caused by the movement and rubbing of individual boards against each other. This is normal with new floors as they adjust and settle into the new environment.

Prior to installation, the timber used for the flooring is acclimatized. However, once it is transported and installed in your home, the timber needs to acclimatize to this new environment again.

It’s normal to hear several cracking noises and shifting as your floors adapt to the moisture and daily use. This should fade over time, and you may notice fewer creaks over the course of weeks and months. However, it is recommended to give your floors four full seasons to acclimate to your home.

What Causes Your Creaky Floors?

There is a possibility that the creaking and squeaking of your new timber floors is not caused by the floors’ adjustment. You may notice that the creaking worsens over time instead of getting better. Or perhaps the creaking is louder now than at the beginning.

As mentioned before, creaking and squeaking are caused by two or more boards rubbing against each other. If the creaking becomes excessive or persists beyond four full seasons of use, something else may be the problem.

Creaking can be caused by various things, such as uneven subfloors, poor installation, or even just moisture. Let’s take a closer look at some of the things that can cause your new timber floors to creak.

Uneven Subfloors Cause Floor Creaks

One of the main causes of a creaking timber floor, even a new one, is the subfloor. If the subfloor is uneven, the timber boards will rub against each other and creak.

The first thing you need to know is whether you have access to the subfloor from below, such as through the exposed ceiling of your basement. If you don’t have a basement or have a finished ceiling that prevents you from accessing the subfloor, you may need to remove finished boards to address the issue.

The first thing you’ll want to do is locate the areas that are creaking. You’ll need the help of a friend or family member to find the sound. Go down to the basement while your friend is upstairs. Ask them to walk on the floor, and every time you hear a creak or squeak, mark the area on the subfloor. This won’t be possible if you have a finished ceiling.

Once you’ve identified all the problem areas, use a step ladder and place your hand on the subfloor. Ask your friend to walk around the area. If the subfloor is the source of the problem, you’ll feel the difference on your hand.

Excessive Moisture Causes New Floors to Squeak

If you have kids, you know that spills on your new timber floor are inevitable sooner or later. Moisture of any kind is detrimental to wood if not controlled for too long. Water causes the wood to warp and buckle as the material absorbs the liquid. When wood boards warp like this, they rub against each other and make noise.

The best way to determine if the creaking is caused by moisture is by finding the source of the noise. Look for signs of water damage in the surrounding area. If the squeaky floor is near a bathtub, sink, or other sources of running water or a water line, it could be a sign of a leak, which could be a much bigger problem. If you suspect a leak, it’s important to address it as soon as possible.

Poor Installation Can Lead to Creaky Timber Floors

Sometimes, when new timber floors start creaking, it’s due to poor installation. There could be various reasons for this. It’s possible that the wrong nails were used during the installation process. It’s even more likely that your installer didn’t leave enough room for the boards to expand and contract.

The best way to determine if the creaking is due to poor installation is to contact the company that installed your floors. Have them come to your home and inspect the work they’ve done. Even if you installed them yourself, it may still be a good idea to consult a professional. They can find the cause of the problem, fix it themselves, or provide you with the necessary recommendations.

Issues with Joists Can Cause a Creaky Floor

If your subfloor has joists that are detached, your floors will be forced to shift when you walk on them. The joists help secure the subfloor, so if they’re not properly attached, it will squeak.

To determine if your joists are the problem, you’ll need access to them either through a basement or an exposed ceiling. Examine all the joists in the area where the creaking is occurring. You’ll notice right away if the subfloor is not adequately attached to the joist.

Weather-Related Creaks Can Occur

Weather plays a significant role in the sounds your floor makes. As the humidity outside rises and falls, the moisture inside your home also shifts. These shifts cause your floor to make all sorts of noises as it adjusts to the changes. This is especially true in areas where the humidity is high most of the time (if not all year).

The best way to determine if the weather is causing the creaking is to go through all other possibilities first. Unfortunately, the only thing you can do is monitor the humidity outside and inside your home with a hygrometer. Once you know where your humidity levels are, the next step is to purchase a dehumidifier or humidifier. This will allow you to control the humidity in your home and prevent creaky floors.

3 Ways to Fix a Creaky Timber Floor

Repairing a creaky timber floor is not the easiest process. It can be time-consuming and labor-intensive, especially if you’re not sure what the root cause is. However, once you’ve identified the problem, you can use one of the following solutions to eliminate the creaking from your timber floors.

Fix the Subfloor

Fixing the subfloor is usually the first and quickest way to repair creaky timber floors. However, if you don’t have access to the subfloor through an exposed ceiling, you may want to consult a professional.

The first thing you can try when fixing your subfloor is installing some shims between the joists and the subfloor. When doing this, make sure to apply a layer of wood glue before inserting the shim. The shims help stabilize the subfloor, while the wood glue ensures they don’t fall out or move.

You can also try using a foam adhesive between the joists and the subfloor to stabilize the subfloor. This works similarly to the shims, adding another way to prevent the subfloor from shifting.

Lastly, another method of fixing your subfloor is to nail the joists to the subfloor. This requires wood screws but ones that aren’t long enough to penetrate the subfloor. When screwing the subfloor to the joist, you’ll need to come in at an angle through the joist. This will secure the subfloor to the joist.

Make sure your screws don’t penetrate the subfloor. If the screw goes into the subfloor, it can cause the finished flooring to be pushed away from it. In this case, it will continue squeaking as the boards shift to make room for the screw.

Sprinkle Sawdust

Sprinkling sawdust into the gaps between your floorboards is a temporary solution. The sawdust helps loosen any tension between the boards and dampens the noise the boards make when they shift. If your floors are creaking due to settling, this may be the solution that’s best suited for you.

However, if you notice that after four full seasons, there is still creaking, there could be another reason why your floors are squeaking. You may need to reapply the sawdust or determine if there’s another cause for the creaking.

Reinstall the Floors

If the floors were poorly installed, reinstalling them may be the only option. When you start removing the finished flooring, you may quickly find the problem. It’s possible that you won’t need to redo the entire floor but only the affected section. If you’re unsure, it’s always best to have a professional come and assess your home.


A new timber floor creaking and squeaking can be frustrating. It quickly raises the question of installation or whether timber floors are worth it at all. However, it’s quite normal for new timber floors to creak, especially in high humidity.

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