gaps between floorboards
thin but noticeable gaps appear between floorboards in different spots of the living
area. in one case where the gap runs on the long side of the board next to the wall, I was able to
move that board with the hill of my boot and close the gap but can't fix the other gaps.. any suggestions?
Re: gaps between floorboards
A couple concerns popped into my mind when I read your post. You really shouldn't develop gaps over time unless either the wood was not fully dry and you had some shrinkage or something is changing in your structure.
First, the fact that you could move the board with your boot could be cause for worry. The boards should have been nailed to the sub-floor and/or floor joists (unless it is a floating floor, which would be easy to remedy by snapping it back together). If the boards are free floating, they may be flexing from use and this is causing gaps to occur. This also does not provide as much structural support for your floor and your joists could be sagging because of it (which could also be causing your gaps).
This brings me to my second worry. If the gaps are not developing from the wood flooring or joists sagging, then it may be that your structure is settling, causing the walls to go out of square. This could present gaps in your flooring, but could also be a sign of other problems. You may want to have someone in to check it for you.
There may be other, less dramatic reasons that you are experiencing this, but I thought I would mention these possibilities.
As to the gaps... if the boards are loose, then you can pry up one row along a wall. Use the space to tap the others over so they are snug. Determine the width of board that you need to make up and install it along the wall, then reinstall the strip that you pulled. Your method may vary, depending on whether it is tongue and groove or butt jointed lumber. Make sure to fasten the boards down to the joists.
If they are nailed/screwed down, then it would seem like you don't have much of a choice other than pulling them all up and laying them back down tightly. No other way that I can think of.