What type of screws to pin down old floorboards

Discussion in 'Floors, Stairs and Lofts' started by noclue123, 7 Nov 2008.

  1. noclue123

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    Hi,

    What kind of screws do I need to to correctly screw down old victorian floorboards to joists? (assuming screws are correct).

    I've screwed in a few floorboards already using screws I used for plasterboards but stopped to seek clear advice.

    cheers
     
  2. gregers

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    it all depends on the thickness of your floorboards,BUT you must ensure that there are no pipe work/cables underneath or it could be a costly mistake.
     
  3. JohnD

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    I am not much good at woodwork but there is a rule of thumb (someone will correct me).I think it is one-third of the length of the screw in the board, and two-thirds in the joist.

    but say you have a typical 18mm board to screw down

    You can use a 50mm screw

    Or if you have old 3/4" boards you can use 2" screws

    same thing!

    I always drill and countersink the board,and pilot drill the joists. Not everyone bothers.

    A slot-headed screw is less likely to get clogged up with dirt than a cross-head (so you can scrape it clean and undo it one day) and is also more in keeping with an old house.

    The screws you use ought to be woodscrews, which are tapered from a thick shank to a narrow point. The thread should not extend all the way up the shank. Screws used for chipboard are straight, not tapered, and are fully threaded.
     
  4. Symptoms

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    no - will the floorboards be seen - sanded and varnished? If so, consider reinstating the original (authentic) look by using floor brads (nails). If appearance isn't an issue, maybe you are going to cover the boards, then use screws designed for wood, not plasterboard screws. Your boards will split when screwing if you don't pre-drill them. JohnD's formula 1/3,2/3rds is a good guide to deciding length of screw needed. Loads to do, then consider Pozidrive screws & electric screwdriver (or slow lekky drill), a few to do then you could even using traditional countersunk, slotted headed steel jobbies - the good old fashioned screws, driven in with a good old fashioned screwdriver. If the boards will be seen and you want to use screws, and remembering it's an old house, don't use modern dazzling brass coloured Pozis (or silver coloured ones), consider 'old fashioned' countersunk, slotted in brass (nice). :cool:
     
  5. noclue123

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    Cheers guys

    The only wood screws I've seen all have the same diameter from top of shank down to where thread becomes narrow point. The few woodscrews I currently have are 57mm length with the threadless shank being 20mm - my floorboards are 18mm deep. From what has been said that sounds like the perfect woodscrew? - apart from diameter being consistent from top to bottom (exc tip). Does the screw diameter matter?

    I am probably going to need a few hundred as I need to screw down at each joist on either side of centre to avoid any cabling.

    I've had a look at screwfix website and this seems the best value / type (even if they are pricier than I thought) for my job?? -http://www.screwfix.com/prods/57087...ngle-Thread-Woodscrews-4-5-x-60mm-Pack-of-100
     
  6. Symptoms

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    no - as you're going to screw, Spax jobbies are fine. Tip - start them by tapping them in with a hammer (so they stand-up by themselves), this saves you from holding them when beginning to screw-in with your electric driver. If you hold them in your fingers I can guarantee that every 5th one you'll slip and stab your finger with the driver - nasty, painfull!

    Consider 4mm dia Spax as these will lessen the risk of the boards splitting.
     

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