It all started with a faint sound coming from one particular spot in my house. I didn’t pay much attention to it at first, but it started to grow louder and louder. I couldn’t ignore it anymore. It was disturbing my sleep. It was disturbing my family’s sleep. I couldn’t sneak around the house at night, not even to use the washroom. And the reason? My hardwood floor decided it was time to voice itself. I, though, had no desire to engage in a conversation. After months of interrupted sleep, I decided it was time to silence my squeaky floor, once and for all. But how? Turns out, it was easier said than done. I started to ask around.
To my surprise, my friends and neighbours were also quietly suffering while their floors were raising their volume. And what did they do about it? Ignored it, accepted it, tried to live with it. For me this wasn’t an option. Being a sensitive sleeper, and having a spouse who is a shift worker, ignoring the “symphony” of my floors was impossible, and why should I have to? Like many of my friends with the same problem, I also approached experts for advice, but they offered no real solution. The squeak was coming from one particular spot on the upper floor between the bedroom and the staircase.
This was a high traffic area (which is a shared characteristic of many squeaky floors), which was inaccessible from below. The only option experts could offer was to: “Simply change the floors!” Simply? Well, not so much! I asked myself: – Why should I suffer weeks of renovation and disruption to my lifestyle? This will definitely not make my sleep any better! Just imagine what such a renovation involves: spending time finding contractors and selecting materials, moving and storing the furniture, arranging garbage disposal…and still it is nothing compared to all the dust and allergens a renovation of this type brings into the house. Why should I spend so much money (and we are talking about thousands of dollars) on replacing my relatively new floors without any guarantee that the new ones won’t squeak as well. Then I thought about the immense environmental cost of it. Imagine the waste that would be created, the amount of trees that would be cut, and all of this just because I have only a few isolated squeaky spots in my floor!
When I pictured the whole ordeal, it didn’t and still doesn’t make any sense to me. Wishing to have all the benefits at once, I wanted a solution that would be quick, clean, affordable, and most importantly, effective. This is when I had the “AHA” moment. If no such solution is available, being a mechanical engineer, I can come up with one! Challenge accepted! Drawing on all of my knowledge and resources I began experimenting on that one spot and one sunny day the squeak was gone! To this day I vividly remember asking my son if he noticed anything I did to silence the squeak, he asked “what’s there to notice, there is nothing here”. Exactly. There was nothing, no more squeaking and no sign of my work! Together with my son we continued to perfect the method and silenced a few other squeaky spots in our house as well as in the houses of family and friends. Gradually, we developed a complete system for repairing squeaky floors. Now, 4 years and hundreds of silent homes later, we want to keep sharing our joy with all of you who continue living with this problem that does have a solution.
During my journey towards peace and quiet, I realized that as banal as squeaky floors are, they have an effect on many aspects of our lives. I am talking about house maintenance & renovation, real estate, property value, family life, sleep and ultimately health. These will be the topics of future posts covered in our blog.
We will share our stories, knowledge and experience, offer tips, advice, refer you to other experts, and answer your questions!
We also welcome your suggestions for future topics, as well as any other comments and experiences you’d like to share with us.