We have a small bedroom in a 1936 terraced house in north London. we have
decided to go for a new fitted carpet with a natural material underlay. (not
rubber underlay, which we suspect might deteriorate after ten or fifteen
years or so).
The wooden flooring has gaps pretty much all over up to roughly 5 cm where
the boards have shrunk over the years. with a few places with some shortish
to 1 cm wide, where the wood has been damaged at some point, probably we
laying them down.
We thought we would go for the most basic carpet from john Lewis with a
Hessian backing. It's about £20 sq metre. (we know the rubber back underlay
deteriorate because the carpet we pulled up and threw out was like a mass of
decayed bread crumbs underneath). John Lewis's felt underlay is £4.45 sq
metre, their basic carpet is £20 a square metre and the fitting charge is
£4.65 a square metre, since I don't think I could fit it myself.
Does all this sound a reasonable choice? And what please is it best to do
about the gaps between the floor boards especially the larger ones? Since I
would like to sort out the gaps in my own time before the carpet actually
arrives. Thanks for any advice.
Ideally fit new floor boards but that could be expensive. B & Q do sell
floorboards but it's not the cheapest option. You could simply put down
hardboard and nail it down every yard or so. This would give you a nice even
flat surface. OK it won't look anything special but you are planning on
covering it up for the next 15 years so it doesn't matter too much.
Personally that's what I'd do. Other options involve fitting floor boards or
cutting bits to fit in the gaps, lifting the old floorboards and fitting
them together properly.
You know it\'s a bad day when even the aubergines are plotting against you
The best suggestion that I have seen here or that I can think of it to lay
down a very thin layer (6 or 7 MM) of whichever of the following is cheapest
in your area: plywood, amazonite, waferboard, chipboard etc. Placed in the
large 4' x 8' or standard size in your area and nailed into place.
if the gaps are 5mm they probably wont matter after the carpet is
installed. A 5cm gap would be about 2" wide and would need to be fixed.
1 cm gap might be a problem .
A fix I have seen done is to use a router and guide strip to route a
groove in the existing flooring and insert a new piece. You cut about
1/3 the flooring depth.
A more common method is to use an underlayment plywood nailed to the
The prices you have quoted seem very high , but I have only ever
purchased really cheap carpet :). Get a couple of quotes and you
will soon tell if you are getting fair prices.
I don't know why the British (I was born in England) are often preoccupied
with working with the original floorboards. These were installed while the
house was being built. In North America they are often weathered and not
intended as a finished floor. They are called a "sub-floor" and the finished
floor is installed over it. If you have gaps such as you describe, why not
install a nice hardwood floor to cover the poor floor you have. If you want
fitted carpeting installed out to the walls, do as the other poster
suggested (as is done in North America), install a low cost underlay such as
thin plywood, hardboard or other sheet material to cover the gaps so they
don't start showing as lines through your carpet.
That carpet and felt underlay should be fine in a bedroom. My 1900 semi has
similar floor boards (some gaps and uneven in places). I laid sheets of
hardboard, nailed down, and sealed the gaps between the skirting boards and
floor with sealant, to make the floor level for carpets and to reduce
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