How to Fix Creaky, Squeaky Floors & Stairs


Wood throughout the home is an attractive choice, but requires a bit of maintenance. Over time, floorboards throughout the home as well as treads and risers on the stairs may come loose and cause an annoying squeak. Squeaks can be nerve racking, announcing whenever you make a move in the house. Although this might be welcome for the purpose of announcing curfew, it is not so desirable at other times. Cheap fixes are available for floors and stairs.

Things You'll Need

  • Shims
  • Carpenter's glue
  • Nails
  • Drill
  • Drill bit


  • Go to the basement or crawlspace under your floor, if available. Send a family member or friend over the floor above to locate the squeaking boards.

  • Coat a wood shim -- a thin piece of scrap wood -- with carpenter's glue.

  • Slide the shim between the floorboard and the joist it sits on. Make sure the floorboard does not rise up.

  • Drill a drywall screw at an angle through the shim and the joist, into the floorboard above to tighten the fix.


  • Walk up and down the stairs to find the squeaking tread. A Tread is the top portion of the stair that you step on. Find whether the tread squeaks at the front or at the sides.

  • Look for the existing fasteners that attach the stair to the stringers or risers beneath.

  • Pre-drill holes into the stairs at a 45-degree angle with the angles facing away from each other, in the location of the squeak. Use a drill bit slightly smaller than the diameter of your nails.

  • Drive two 8- or 10-penny nails at a 45-degree angle into the stair using a hammer. Hammer the nails so they fit into the pre-drilled holes to prevent splitting the wood.

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