Wax to stop the creaking sound?

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Q: What can I do to stop the creaking sound my wooden floor makes when you step on it? I heard that you should wax the floor.

A: You shouldn’t wax a floor if it is finished with a polyurethane or similar top coat. Waxing won’t stop the creaking in any case.

The movement in the floor is very likely also related to a loose and moving sub floor. The only sure way to remedy this is to replace the floor. Nail down the old subfloor with spiral nails and if need be, screw at least 3/8 spruce sheeting over top, then a new hardwood floor.

Related Q: We installed hardwood floors in our house 2 years ago. We used all short boards. It looks great, but the whole floor pops as we walk across it. I thought that maybe it was because we have so many joints, having used the short boards, but we have no idea how to fix it.

We put a new layer of OSB down since taking out the old floor left the original subfloor weak. Do you have any suggestions on how to fix the popping?

A: If the problem is the OSB no holding the nails, there isn’t much you can do short of removing the floor, installing plywood and then installing the floor again. Perhaps you can fire the occasional 2″ nail from a trim gun and putty the hole, but I’m not very hopeful that will work.

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