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Filling Gaps In Unfinished Wood Floors

22 Feb 2012 |    |    |    2 Comments

Use natural resin filler and some sawdust

If you’re looking for a way to fill gaps in your unfinished wood floors, it is probably the case that your floor has been subject to some expansion and contraction since it was first laid and you have now been left with gaps you’d like to fill.

There is one thing worth saying before you jump in and fill the gaps in your unfinished wood floor.  Because your floor is made of a natural substance, in this case complete wood such as in the case of solid wood flooring, a certain degree of expansion and contraction is completely normal.  Wood, like most other natural substances responds to changes in atmospheric temperature and humidity by expanding and contracting.  When there is excess moisture in the air, wood takes in some of that moisture, causing it to expand.  When humidity levels are reduced, the wood will then let the retained moisture go, causing it to contract.  This is entirely normal and may give rise to gaps which appear during certain conditions and disappear at other times.

If you are thinking about filling gaps in an unfinished wood floor which hasn’t had the time to settle into it’s environment and hasn’t had the chance to expand and contract during a couple of seasons, it might be worth stopping and thinking again.  Wood floors need space to expand when moisture levels are high and if you fill all the expansion gaps in your wood flooring, you could end up with huge problems in the stability and look of your floor.

That said, if you feel that your floor has had ample opportunity to settle into its environment and the gaps in the floor are causing you headaches, there’s a simple and effective way you can hide the gaps, either on a DIY basis or by calling in the professionals.

What to do is buy a natural resin filler and mix it with some sawdust from the original floor if at all possible.  If you don’t have a supply of sawdust from the original floor, this should be easy enough to track down at a local sawmill or from your wood floor supplier.  Once you’ve mixed up the resin and the sawdust, it’s a case of carefully and methodically filling the gaps in your unfinished wood floor.  While this is a time consuming job, it’s not a job that requires any particular skill or tools, just a whole lot of patience.

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2 Comments

  1. Joel's Gravatar Joel
    27/02/2012 at 10:07 pm | Permalink

    I have an unfinished wood floor that is from the 1960′s. The space is the unfinished half-storey of my house. I want to finish the floors, but there are gaps between all of the boards. 550 square feet of gaps is a lot to do one gap at a time. Is there a resin I can spread on after sanding and then resand to level it?

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