/ DIY - filling gaps between floor boards

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Baron Weasel - on 14 Mar 2019

Looking for advice on filling the gaps between floor boards. They're the original from when the house was built about 60 years ago and have been lifted at some stage to retrofit central heating. In two of the bedrooms the gaps were quite small and just needed painting and look good, but the master bedroom and landing have a few gaps that need filling. Screwfix sell an evostick polyurethane wood glue that sets in 5 minutes and says it can be used for filling and can be sanded. Would this work or is there something better?

jkarran - on 14 Mar 2019
In reply to Baron Weasel:

Are you planning to paint over them and are you filling to eliminate draughts or just for the look?

If painting then decorators caulk is easy to work with, paintable and reasonably flexible. No sanding needed, just a wet finger and a wipe with a wet cloth to remove the excess.

If you want to stop draughts while still being able to lift them for access I'd glue thin strips of wood to the underside of the boards along the edges where the tongue has been ripped off (notch the strip to clear joists).

I wouldn't inject PU glue, it's relatively expensive, messy and unnecessary.

jk

Post edited at 12:28
Jon Greengrass on 14 Mar 2019
In reply to Baron Weasel:

wall to wall carpets?

1
Baron Weasel - on 14 Mar 2019
In reply to jkarran:

Yes I want to paint over it. In one of the rooms I have done so far there were a few narrow gaps that I filled with acrylic framing sealant which worked well, but they were only a couple of mm's wide. Some of the gaps I have to fill are around 10mm + in a couple of places.

jkarran - on 14 Mar 2019
In reply to Baron Weasel:

Ah. If they're that bad I'd route out a slot along the board edge, square the ends up with a chisel then glue in a 1/2" wooden strip flush with the surface.

Pre-shaped hard and softwood strips are available from most timber/builders yards assuming you don't have a table saw.

Definitely don't squirt foaming glue into that!

jk

Post edited at 13:02
Baron Weasel - on 14 Mar 2019
In reply to jkarran:

One of my climbing partners has a table saw. I'll ask him to come and have a look actually, good idea - thanks!

Iamgregp - on 14 Mar 2019
In reply to Baron Weasel:

There's specialist wood fillers, bit like polyfilla but designed specifically for wood, used it on some massive holes where someone screwed in some rudimentary banisters in our house.  Sanded then painted them and you'd never know the was ever any holes in them... 

Tyler - on 14 Mar 2019
In reply to Baron Weasel:

You can buy floorboard silvers but they need to go down before any sanding (and you'd need a proper floorfloor s to make them flush). I thought about coloured caulk for mine but as in some places it's unsupported I assumed it would probably just fall straight through (or crack and lift where it was supported by the tongue of the tongue and groove) so instead I've bought twine which I've twisted and then jammed into place with a screwdriver. Next step is to buy a turkey baster to apply varnish on top to seal in place. I don't know if that will work and it will need quite a lot of varnish I imagine 

Mr. Plod - on 14 Mar 2019
In reply to Baron Weasel:

I'm not a builder or joiner but I would have thought that filling the gaps would increase the risk of the boards distorting if there is an increase in humidity. Just my thought.

gravy - on 14 Mar 2019

If you are preparing the board for varnish or paint, sand them, collect the sawdust mix with PVA or caulk and use the paste to fill the holes. Leave a couple of days and then lightly sand to remove the overspill.

Saves having unsightly stripes - if the gaps are wide in places you'll need to cut fillets to pack them out.

jethro kiernan - on 14 Mar 2019
In reply to Baron Weasel:

Just watch Dawn wall before playing with the table saw :-/

atthedropofahat on 14 Mar 2019
In reply to Baron Weasel:

Don't fill gaps between your flooring with anything solid. Wood expands and contracts seasonally and the gaps are there to accomodate this. If you stop the boards moving laterally then they will move upward. You could always take the moved boards up and reposition them to even the gaps. If you don't want gaps then board and carpet.

Timmd on 14 Mar 2019
In reply to atthedropofahat:

I never saw gaps as big as 10mm in my childhood home between the floorboards when work was being done, and floor boards lifting wasn't a problem.

mattrm - on 14 Mar 2019
In reply to Baron Weasel:

Possibly a different thing, but we filled the gaps on our sanded and waxed wooden floorboards with this:

https://www.draughtex.co.uk/

If you've got a lot to fill it's definitely worth a look.

Toby_W on 14 Mar 2019
In reply to Baron Weasel:

I’ve sanded and sealed quite a few floors now and there is a great site with advice which i’m Sure you’ll find if you do a search.  Based on this when lifting and re-laying boards if there are big gaps i’ve Used slivers but for general fillers no of the smaller gaps he recommended lecol, a resin based gue that you mix with saw dust.

found the site

http://newellwoodworks.co.uk/guide%20to%20floor%20sanding.html

good luck

Toby

jkarran - on 15 Mar 2019
In reply to mattrm:

> Possibly a different thing, but we filled the gaps on our sanded and waxed wooden floorboards with this: https://www.draughtex.co.uk/

Not normally a fan of this sort of thing but that looks like a nice, remarkably neat and simple product.

jk


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