Every Inside

Get All Your Home Improvement Solutions with Our Handy Tips

How to Fix Engineered Hardwood Floor Gaps: Seven DIY Steps

how to fix engineered hardwood floor gaps

Last Updated on July 29, 2023

Are your engineered hardwood floors starting to resemble a jigsaw puzzle, with gaps appearing between the boards? Like a missing puzzle piece, these flooring gaps can be frustrating and unsightly.

Engineered wood floor gaps can occur due to various factors, such as changes in humidity and temperature. But don’t worry, with just a few simple tools and materials, you can easily fill those gaps and have your floors looking as good as new.

To fix engineered hardwood floor gaps, assess the cause of the gaps. After that, prepare the area by cleaning it thoroughly and removing any debris. Then choose an appropriate one and fill in the gaps carefully.

Today we will discuss the steps you need to follow to fix your engineered hardwood flooring gaps. We will also answer common questions like whether you should fill small cracks in hardwood floors and what filler is best for engineered wood floor gaps. So, let’s get started.

Guide on How to Fix Engineered Hardwood Floor Gaps

Guide on How to Fix Engineered Hardwood Floor Gaps

To fix engineered hardwood floor gaps, you’ll need to follow a step-by-step process. But at first, you need to assess the cause of the gaps. This could be due to changes in humidity, installation issues, or natural settling.

Step 1: Assess the Cause of the Gaps

First, you should assess the cause of the gaps in your engineered hardwood floor by determining whether they result from humidity or installation errors. This is crucial because the appropriate fix will depend on the root cause of the gaps.

If the gaps are due to humidity, the wood has expanded and contracted with changes in moisture levels. In this case, you may need to wait for the humidity levels to stabilize before attempting any repairs.

Conversely, if the gaps result from installation errors, such as improper spacing between planks or inadequate adhesive, you’ll need to address these issues directly.

Step 2: Prepare the Area

Clear the debris and create a clean canvas for addressing the gaps in your engineered wood flooring. Begin using a vacuum or broom to thoroughly clean the area, removing all loose dirt, dust, and debris. Take extra care to clean the gaps, as any remaining particles can affect the effectiveness of the repair.

Next, grab a piece of sandpaper and carefully sand the edges of the gaps. This will help to remove any rough spots and create a smooth surface for the repair. Wash the area with a damp cloth after sanding to eliminate any remaining dust or particles.

Step 3: Choose the Appropriate Filler for the Gaps

Once you’ve cleaned and sanded the area, it’s time to choose the right filler for those pesky gaps in your beautiful wood flooring. When fixing engineered hardwood floor gaps, a few options exist. Wood fillers, powdered wood fillers, and wood putty are all viable choices. 

However, for larger gaps, it’s recommended to use a strong filler to ensure a long-lasting fix. Strong fillers can effectively fill in the gaps and prevent them from widening.

Step 4: Fill the Gaps With the Chosen Filler

Now that you’ve chosen the perfect filler for your wood flooring gaps, it’s time to bring your floor back to life. It’s like being an artist, meticulously filling in the missing pieces of a puzzle.

To effectively fill the gaps, follow these steps:

  1. Apply the filler to the gaps using a putty knife. Make sure to fill the gaps completely, but be cautious of overfilling.
  2. Smooth the filler to match the surrounding floor. This’ll ensure a seamless and natural look.
  3. Take your time and pay attention to detail. The goal is to make the gaps disappear, leaving your floor looking flawless and uniform.

Step 5: Sand and Stain the Filled Areas

Smooth out the filled areas by gently sanding and then add a stain that matches the surrounding flooring for a seamless and beautiful finish.

Start by ensuring that the filler is completely dry. Once it’s dry, take sandpaper and sand the filled areas gently. Be careful not to apply too much pressure as you don’t want to damage the surrounding flooring. Sanding will help level out the filler and create a smooth surface.

After sanding, wipe the area with a damp cloth to remove any dust or debris. This step is crucial to ensure the stain adheres properly.

Once the area is clean and dry, apply the stain using a soft cloth or brush, following the manufacturer’s instructions. Apply the stain evenly and allow it to dry completely before walking on the floor.

Step 6: Maintain Consistent Humidity

To ensure a seamless finish, maintain consistent humidity levels in your home. Fluctuations in humidity can cause the engineered hardwood floorboards to expand or contract, leading to gaps and unevenness.

To prevent this, keep the humidity levels within the 35-55% range. Use a humidifier during dry seasons to add moisture to the air and prevent the floorboards from drying out and shrinking. Conversely, use a dehumidifier during humid seasons to remove excess moisture from the air and prevent the floorboards from swelling.

Monitor the humidity levels regularly using a hygrometer and adjust accordingly. Additionally, consider sealing the floorboards with a protective finish to minimize the effects of humidity changes further.

Step 7: Monitor the Floor

Keep an eye on your floor because you want to avoid any new issues arising that could lead to further damage. Check the floor periodically to ensure no new gaps or buckling. Address any issues immediately to prevent further damage.

To effectively monitor the floor, follow these guidelines:

  • Inspect the floor regularly: Take the time to visually examine the entire floor surface, looking for any signs of gaps or buckling. Pay attention to areas near walls, transitions, and high-traffic areas.
  • Use your senses: Walk across the floor and listen for any squeaking or cracking sounds. Feel for any unevenness or movement underfoot.
  • Look for changes in appearance: Keep an eye out for any changes in the color or texture of the floor, as these could indicate underlying issues.

Should I fill small cracks in the hardwood floor?

Should I fill small cracks in the hardwood floor

If you notice small cracks in your hardwood floor, don’t worry, they’re usually not a cause for concern and can add character to your space. In fact, attempting to fill these cracks isn’t recommended and may be ineffective in the long run.

This is because wood naturally expands and contracts with changes in moisture levels, and any filler you apply will likely be pushed out as the wood moves. Instead of filling the cracks, it’s best to leave them as they are.

But, if the cracks are larger or causing significant issues, it’s best to consult a professional who can assess the situation and recommend the appropriate action.

What is the best filler for gaps in engineered wood floorboards?

Using a filler specifically designed for engineered wood floorboards is like finding the perfect puzzle piece to complete the overall look and feel of your flooring. Choose a filler compatible with the material when filling gaps in engineered wood floorboards.

One of the best fillers for these types of gaps is a specialized wood filler specifically formulated for engineered wood. This type of filler is designed to match the color and texture of the floorboards, ensuring a seamless and natural appearance.

Also, choose a flexible filler that can withstand the engineered wood’s natural movement. This’ll prevent the filler from cracking or popping out of the gaps over time.

What kind of caulk can I use for small engineered hardwood floor gaps?

For a seamless and flawless finish, choose silicone caulk to fill the gaps in your floor. Due to its durability, flexibility, and water-resistant properties, silicone caulk is the ideal choice for filling gaps in engineered hardwood floors. It’s commonly used to seal doors and windows, making it a reliable option for floor gaps.

When applying silicone caulk, ensure the gaps are clean and debris-free. Use a caulk gun to carefully apply a thin line of caulk along the gap, ensuring to fill it. Smooth the caulk using a caulk smoothing tool or your finger, ensuring a level and even finish. Allow the caulk to dry completely before walking on the floor.

Why is my engineered wood floor gapping?

Why is my engineered wood floor gapping

When your engineered wood floor starts to gap, it’s because those temperature fluctuations are causing the wood boards to expand and contract, revealing unsightly spaces in your flooring.

As temperatures rise, the wood boards naturally expand, and as they cool down, they contract. This natural movement is known as thermal expansion and contraction.

The gaps occur when the boards expand beyond their original size and cannot contract enough to close the spaces between them. This phenomenon is more common in areas with extreme temperature changes or high humidity levels.

Also, improper installation or inadequate flooring material acclimation can contribute to gaps. To prevent or minimize these gaps, maintain a stable indoor climate and ensure proper installation techniques.

Does engineered hardwood need to be resealed after filling the gap?

If you’ve filled the gaps in your engineered hardwood floor, you may wonder if it needs to be resealed for added protection. While most engineered hardwood floors come pre-finished and don’t require sealing, adding a sealant can provide an extra layer of defense against water damage.

This is especially important in areas prone to moisture, such as kitchens or bathrooms. By sealing your floor, you can prolong its lifespan and maintain its beauty for years.

It’s advisable to use a sealant specifically designed for engineered hardwood floors, as it’ll be formulated to adhere properly and provide the necessary protection.

Get the Seamless Look: Fix Gaps in Your Hardwood Floor

Fixing gaps in your engineered hardwood floor is a simple and effective process. By following the step-by-step guide provided, you can easily fill in those annoying gaps and restore the seamless look of your flooring.

Remember to choose the best filler for your specific floorboards and use the appropriate caulk for the job. While some may question the need to fill small cracks, it’s recommended to prevent further damage and maintain the overall appearance of your floor.

And don’t forget, resealing the floor after filling the gap is essential for long-lasting results. So take charge of your flooring and enjoy the beautiful, gap-free finish you deserve.

How to Fix Engineered Hardwood Floor Gaps: Seven DIY Steps

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to top