Gap filling is an accompanying floor restoration service, especially when it comes to floorboards sanding and parquet floor restoration. It is a procedure that is used to fill in the space that can occur over time between the floorboards as a result of a movement in the supporting joists over which the floorboards have been laid or as a result of the natural contraction and expansion of the timber. There are several methods for gap filling, but the most widely used ones are raisin and saw dust gap willing and the strip filling techniques.
Gap Filling with Resin and Saw Dust
One of the most common method for gap filling of wooden floors involves the filling of spaces with a putty made up by mixing clear resin filler with sawdust collected during the floor sanding process. Because each floor has a unique colour as a result of aging, using the say dust from your floors guarantees that the gap filling mixture will have identical to your floors colour. This is manually applied with the help of spatula to ensure that all gaps are carefully filled and covered.
While this method is often an efficient solution, it is only applicable to smaller gaps of 5 mm or less, as the resin and sawdust mixture tends to fall through in wider gaps. Gap filling does not only provide smooth and uniform floor finish, but it is also very efficient for draught insulation.
One thing, however that should be noted is that gap filling is only a durable solution for stable and solid floors. It is very vulnerable to any movements in the floors and therefore unless the floorboards are super stable and there is no movement in the supporting joists, gap filling may eventually start to fall through. That is the reason why gap filling is excluded from our Service Guarantee, because while we make every effort to secure all loose floorboards, it is beyond our control to guarantee that there will be no movement in the joists, causing some shift in the floorboards and hence affecting gap filling as well. Nevertheless, gap filling on more stable floors such as parquet floors is more effective and durable.
Wood Strips (Slivers) Filling
Another gap filling method which is usually applied on wider gaps is the so-called strip filling or also slivers filling method. This method applies to floorboards restoration where bigger gaps may appear over time between the wooden boards. The technique involves the use of small strips of wood (slivers) and gluing them into the gaps. While strip filling is considered to be a more effective method compared to gap filling, it is only applicable on floors with relatively few gaps. Imagine wood flooring with some small strips of wood between each and every boars and you will understand why. The main downside is that this will create undesirable visual appearance and will spoil the natural uniform appearance of the wooden flooring.
Finally, whatever the gap filling method, whether it is resin gap filling or strip filling, it is always applied before the sanding process. This is to ensure that any residues on the floor surface are removed by the sanding and the final finish is smooth and ready for the final step – the sealing.