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How to Fix Long Gaps in Flooring [All Kinds of Wood Floors]

Are you facing flooring gap problems from laminate, vinyl LVP, and engineered wood?

It’s annoying and looks really ugly, I know. But when you can fix it, then you shouldn’t replace it. 

Looking for an answer to how to fix long gaps in flooring

People usually have three types of flooring- laminate, vinyl LVP, and engineered wood floors. In laminate, you can use a gap repair tool and wood glue. Also, vinyl LVP has two ways to fix it. Lastly, engineered wood can be fixed with caulk, putty, and wood filler. 

Above, I talked about the three processes you wanted to know about. But you can clearly see I talked about it briefly.

So if you want the full answer, just scroll down. Let’s start!

Laminate

Interlocking laminate flooring may develop unattractive gaps with time and wear. Fortunately, this is generally a simple issue that can be fixed without completely replacing the flooring. 

Method 1: Using a Floor Gap Repair Tool

1. Get a floor gap repair tool. Many firms now manufacture specific products that make it simpler. So, to seal minor gaps in hardwood and laminate floors. Just the way you fix a crack in a wall or ceiling. These are often in the form of small, heavy rectangular blocks. The blocks have an adhesive rubber face that offers a grip for repositioning. And the sliding plank with a few hits of a mallet.

2. Remove the protective covering from the block’s sticky face. Remove the plastic covering to reveal the sticky rubber cushion below. This surface will be utilized to grasp the laminate board when physically pressing it back into place.

3. Place the block 1 inch (2.5 cm) from one of the displaced boards. Place the tool in the middle of each board. Then push down hard with both hands on the topside to secure it. It should be tightly fastened to the board to avoid sliding or scooting as you work.

4. Move away from the wall and toward the middle of the floor. When using the floor gap fixer, push the troublesome board towards the center of the floor. Instead of outwards towards the wall, because it will be better in that way. 

This ensures that the far end is hidden by the baseboard. If you move towards the wall instead, you can wind up with gaps between consecutive boards.

5. Using a mallet, tap the end of the block to close the gap. With one hand, hold the tool steady and strike the side farthest from the gap. A number of times to drive the loose board closer to the one it’s drifted away from. 

It should go forward a few millimeters at a time. Continue hitting the block until the plank is snugly against its neighbor.

6. Continue with the remaining gaps. To use the wedge and mallet, replace any further sliding planks in your laminate flooring. Maintain a clean floor by working attentively. Overall, the project should just take a few minutes.

Method 2: Wood Glue to Fill Gaps

1. Using a little instrument, scoop up a blob of wood glue. Reaching into the little region will be easier using a toothpick, cotton swab, or similar instrument. 

Some DIY enthusiasts even utilize disposable syringes for precise application. The key point is that the glue only gets into the grooves between the boards.

2. Apply glue to the uncovered mouth of the relocated plank using a swab. Within the gap, the rounded edge was at the bottom of the plank. It’s meant to link with the top of the next board in the line. So it should be visible. 

Apply a thick layer of adhesive to this area. Ensure it is evenly covered from one end to the other. If not enough glue is used, the repaired portion of flooring may not last long.  Because under continual foot activity, you need a strong glue. 

3. Close the gap by pushing the separating boards together. To do so, repeatedly smack the board at an angle with your palm. For a gentler technique, consider laying both hands flat against the plank. 

Then gently slide it towards its neighbor with your whole body weight.

4. Remove any extra glue. With a moist towel, dab the glue, pushing up through the crevices in the freshly healed gap. Then go over the joint until no residue remains. 

Any glue that is accidentally left behind may dry to a gritty texture underfoot. Otherwise, it causes a slight discoloration in the laminate.

You need a lot of glue to complete the process.

Here you will find some excellent products for use in this process:

Tekbond Wood Glue, PVA Wood Glue for Furniture and Woodworking, 8ozTekbond PVA wood glue is perfect for bonding. This yellow PVA wood glue has a strong adhesion between wood and materials. It is made of a humid material, making it excellent for both indoor and outdoor woodworking tasks.
Gorilla Ultimate Waterproof Wood Glue, 18 OunceThe Gorilla Wood Glue Ultimate recipe is 100% waterproof and extremely strong, but it still cleans off simply with water. Excellent for exterior applications where heat or moisture may be an issue, as well as indoor tasks that may benefit from the prolonged working period and high strength.

This glue is only used for gap filling, so give it a try.

Vinyl LVP

Method 1: Floors That Are Glued or Clicked-In

If you have a hardwood set with tap tiles, remove a tile. Without damaging adjacent parts, it might be tricky. Here’s a primer on how to fill the gaps:

Using a mop and warm water, clean any wooden floors. Hot water releases the pores of the floor. Then it aids in the removal of stuck-on dirt and debris. 

To eliminate any residual dirt from missed locations or floor cleaning, choose a specific cleaner. Use it on the space between boards. Hoovering and cleaning your floors is a fantastic way to keep them clean.

Allow the floor to dry for a day. Then, look for any leftover dirt in the space. Check the space with your finger to see whether it is dry. If it still feels moist, wait another 12 hours before trying again. Your floor is ready to use after it has dried.

It is quite easy to close the space between your floorboards. First, apply a small bead of caulk down the plank’s bottom and across the gap. Then, using a putty knife, push the caulk into the crack completely. 

After it has dried, sand away any extra caulk that has leaked out. Scrape away excess caulk and let it dry (about an hour).

It’s essential to wait at least 24 hours after fixing the vinyl plank flooring before performing. You can do the same process if your kitchen needs fixing

Checking with your foot is the best method to see whether the adhesive has fully cured. If you use too much adhesive, the flooring surface might get saturated. For up to two weeks before showing signs of wear.

Method 2: Floors with a Loose Lay

It may be just as fast and simple to repair a gap in your vinyl floor. All you need to do is utilize the loose lay rubber mallet from the row’s end. There are various products available to assist you with closing the holes in your floor. 

Double-sided tape and a rubber mallet are two sorts of tools.

It may seem difficult, but sealing a vinyl plank floor gap is really rather simple. All you need is some double-sided tape and a scrap of 4×4 plywood. Set the tape in the space between the vinyl plank floors.  

Then place the wood on top and pound it with a rubber mallet. It will drive it together until the gap is closed.

Engineered Wood Floors

You can use wood filler, caulk, long rope strings, and putty. These are the four things to fill the gaps in the engineered wood floors. If you detect any cracks in your floor, patch them as quickly as possible. 

You should replace them before they cause difficulties on your whole floor. No matter how broad they are or what size they are. 

Remember that your hardwood is composed entirely of natural materials. Thus, it leaves holes in it, particularly in humid places. It might cause more damage to your flooring.

However, if your wood planks have small gaps, they will need less repair than planks.

You may, however, use wood filler, caulk, or even lengthy rope threads. Caulk will work better as it worked really nicely in the bathroom. These measures not only close holes in your flooring but may also prevent drafts from forming.

So, if your floor has a lot of gaps or voids, you need to address them soon. However, if you see that your flooring is too damaged to repair. It may be preferable to replace the whole floor.

If you use these procedures or follow these steps perfectly. Then your floors will have a naturally smooth surface that will endure for decades!

FAQs

How much of an expansion gap should laminate flooring have?

Dimensional variances of around 1 mm may occur in a meter of laminate flooring. This is why it is critical to provide a 10 mm spacer. Between panels and walls, door frames, pipes, and so on. If this is not done, the material may incur damage from buckling, warping, and other factors.

What happens if there is no growth gap?

When the correct expansion gap is not there. The pressure created by the natural expansion of the floor must go elsewhere. This causes the floor to crumble and often results in irreparable damage that necessitates plank replacement. Buckling occurs when a floor is unable to extend correctly.

Is it true that laminate flooring makes your home colder?

Laminate flooring may be much cooler than carpet, which may be a concern. If you live in a colder nation, on those dismal winter mornings. You should also consider the noise barrier that the carpet offers. As well as the fact that laminate flooring may be rather noisy.

Final Verdict

Did this article clear up all your confusion? I guess now you understand how to fix long gaps in flooring. I talked about all three kinds of floors here. Now, you can choose and fix which one you have in your home. 

Be careful working with clues and other things. You should plan the process clearly and start from one end. It will be easier for you to complete it. You can hire a qualified person too. 

I’m signing off here today. I hope you can do it on your own. Good luck!