Block Party

February 27, 2013   //  Posted in: Basement, DIY, Flooring   //  By: Emily   //  Leave a comment

This house was built in 1941, and the floors in some rooms are a bit bouncy. I addressed this ever-so-briefly when we talked about eliminating squeaks with these amazing countersink screws, but I never completely wrote about what we’ve been doing in the basement.

Those “X” braces supporting our first floor? They’re mighty wiggly. And most of them are actually missing, meaning that all that’s hanging out is an “/” or “\” and on some spans, absolutely nothing, as if the the bros who used to play fooseball and darts in the basement next to the really gross toilet would swing, and inevitably rip the supports right out of the ceiling. Maybe they were monkeys, we’re not sure, we hypothesize a lot about the previous owners though. All’s fair in broken floor war.

Blocking original to our house.

It’s really hard to photograph things well in our basement, let me be upfront about that.

A quick google search shows me that metal steel bridging (or “X-bracing”)¬†will do the job, but why bother with that if we have perfectly good scrap wood. Leftover from a plethora of projects, we have a lot of short pieces of 2×8 and 2×10 boards that we trimmed slightly to fit between the floorboards. All you do is wedge the board in place (we honed in on areas where the bouncing was most¬†noticeable) and nailed it securely through the outer side of each joist. Remember not to squash any pre-existing wiring; as shown here, we made small cuts in the supports to work around them.

New blocking in the basement using a scrap 2x10 to firm up a bouncy floor.

A little work really firms up the floor more than you’d expect. Try it at home for yourself.

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