How to Fix a Squeaky Floor Under Carpet: Step-by-Step Guide

A squeaky floor under the carpet can be a nuisance in any home. The annoying creaking sound can disturb your peace and even embarrass you when you have guests over. Fortunately, you can address this issue without tearing out the entire carpet. In this guide, we’ll walk you through how to fix a squeaky floor under a carpet effectively and efficiently.

Why Does the Floor Squeak?

Before diving into the repair process, it’s essential to understand what causes the floor to squeak. The most common reasons include:

  • Loose Nails: Over time, nails can loosen from the floor joists, causing the floor to move and creak.
  • Movement of Subfloor: The subfloor may shift due to changes in temperature and humidity, rubbing against the joists.
  • Wear and Tear: As your home ages, the materials naturally degrade, leading to squeaks.

Now, let’s look at how to fix squeaky floors under the carpet.

Tools and Materials Needed

To tackle the squeaky floor, gather the following tools and materials:

  • Stud finder
  • Drill
  • Screws (specially designed for flooring repairs)
  • Power drill
  • Wood shims
  • Carpet knife or utility knife
  • Hammer

Step-by-Step Guide

  1. Locate the Source of the Squeak: Start by walking around the squeaky area to pinpoint the noise source. Mark the location.
  2. Find the Floor Joists: Use a stud finder to locate the floor joists under the carpet. The squeaky area may be near the joist.
  3. Prepare the Carpet: Carefully lift a small section of the carpet at the marked area using a carpet knife. Cut a small hole to access the subfloor.
  4. Secure Loose Nails or Screws: Check for loose nails or screws in the subfloor. If you find any, remove them and replace them with screws designed for flooring repairs.
  5. Add Screws: If the subfloor is not secured correctly, you may need to add screws to stabilize it. Use screws that are long enough to reach the joist but not so long that they damage anything underneath.
  6. Insert Wood Shims: If the squeak persists, insert wood shims between the subfloor and the joists to add stability and prevent movement.
  7. Test for Squeaks: After completing the repairs, walk around the area to test for squeaks. Make sure the floor is stable and quiet.
  8. Replace the Carpet: Carefully replace the carpet, securing it back in place once the squeak is fixed. You may need a carpet kicker to stretch the carpet back into position.

Additional Tips

  • Use Special Screws: There are special screws available that are designed for use with carpeted floors. These screws have a small head that won’t protrude through the carpet.
  • Consult a Professional: If the squeak persists or you encounter other structural issues, consult a professional for assistance.
  • Regular Maintenance: Regularly inspect and maintain your floors to prevent future squeaks.


Fixing a squeaky floor under the carpet doesn’t have to be a daunting task. With the right tools and a systematic approach, you can resolve the issue and restore peace to your home. Follow the steps outlined in this guide to tackle the squeak and enjoy a comfortable living space.