How to caulk baseboard gaps?

by Sharon

How do I fill gaps at baseboard, should I caulk? If so, does anyone know how to caulk baseboards?

  40 answers
  • Dfm Dfm on May 08, 2018 can come in a cartridge, or in a smaller amount from a squeeze tube.hats for smaller gaps. How big is the gap at the base board?

  • Rowgop (Pam) Rowgop (Pam) on May 08, 2018

    Baseboards. Seal narrow cracks with paintable or clear latex caulk, either at the top or along the bottom where the baseboards meet the floor. Run a continuous bead of caulk along the gap and smooth it with a caulk tool or wet finger. Wipe away the excess caulk with a damp cloth.

  • A A on Jan 24, 2018

    Caulk is your best bet for baseboards.

  • William William on Jan 23, 2018

    Use paintable caulk. Joint compound will crack with the wood movement.

  • Steven Boulanger Steven Boulanger on Jan 14, 2018

    Use painters caulk. Let it dry then it is paintable

  • Joy11962754 Joy11962754 on Jan 14, 2018

    I have used caulking to fill small cracks and then painted either the gun or a tube depending on the amount to fill

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Jan 14, 2018

    use wooden beading trim or sealant........

  • Cynthia H Cynthia H on Jan 01, 2018

    If you're caulking, painters tape above and below will give you a straight line. If you meant chalk paint, I've used it on baseboard. Clean well, prime if stained, and then paint. It will probably take two coats.

  • Amanda Amanda on Jul 20, 2018

    Hello. I have filled gaps with caulk. You could also add a quarter round molding to the bottom to hide the gap.

    • Kim Brady Kim Brady on Feb 02, 2023

      Quarter round is not meant for baseboards. I think you mean base shoe. Same idea but meant specifically to fill the gap shown in the picture.

  • Shuganne Shuganne on Jul 20, 2018

    Amanda has the least expensive answer, especially if you get a caulk that matches the floor color.

    I might take it as an opportunity to take the old woodwork out and step up in value and design. Especially if you'd like to go a little more traditional and stylish than the simple builder's grade. Just a thought.☺

  • William William on Oct 06, 2018

    100% paintable silicone caulk. You can also use clear silicone caulk.

  • Shore grandmom Shore grandmom on Oct 06, 2018

    Only caulk the part of the baseboard that touches the wall, do not caulk along the floor.

    • See 1 previous
    • Jerry Jerry on Jan 25, 2022

      Why not?

      I have been installing wood floors for over forty years and installing baseboard.

      when caulking along the floor I protect the floor with painters tape and caulk. I go back and wipe the base with a damp rag to get a clean look. Keep your rag clean and you’ll have great results.

  • Joy30150932 Joy30150932 on Feb 10, 2018

    You can purchase beige caulk to fill in the holes. Smooth off with a damp cloth before it dries.

  • Nancy Turner Nancy Turner on Feb 10, 2018

    There are paintable silicone caulks that you could use if you can't find the color you need to match.

  • Renee Renee on Feb 10, 2018

    Latex caulk will work fine. For good adhesion, clean the dust thoroughly and make the existing grout a tiny bit moist. Use a damp paper towel for that and blot the points of contact. Silicone caulk gathers dust and dirt, so try to avoid that.

  • William William on Feb 10, 2018

    I would use a latex caulk.

  • Robyn Garner Robyn Garner on Jan 13, 2022

    Caulk was applied between my new baseboards and tile floor. It is now 10 years later and with concrete slab & temperature changes, it still 'slips' down to the floor and has to be scrubbed away. Don't caulk between tile and baseboard!

  • Michelle Jones Michelle Jones on Jan 14, 2022

    Only a few answers here actually get the heart of the question and one I also have: how do you stop the draft between the baseboard and the wood floor when the baseboad is level but the floor isn't? Sometimes I feel like I'm sitting in an overheated room and my feet are out in an icestorm. I too wondered about caulking but hesitated because it would touch the floor -- that's how big the gap is in places. Quarterround would solve the problem...probably...but it is a time-consuming and would be difficult since the trim would jut forward at the door openings.

    So, if I might refine the there a product available that can be applied with a caulking gun or fingers that is not caulk?

    • See 1 previous
    • SoPrecious SoPrecious on Dec 01, 2023

      Apply low expansion spray foam insulation into gaps to stop the air flow. After it dries, trim off excess. You can leave it as is, paint it to match baseboard or make a small groove in it then, apply caulk for a smooth and seamless finish.

  • Ber30793851 Ber30793851 on Jan 16, 2022

    use latex paint just let it run on the floor and then use a grinder tyo remove excess

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Jan 22, 2022

    Cheat: Stuff the holes with tissue paper and then seal them in with whiteatoothpaste.

  • Michelle Jones Michelle Jones on Jan 25, 2022

    Thanks to all who responded but I think Jerry's solution might just do the trick. I am handy with caulking guns. Thanks, Jerry. Exactly what I needed to know.

  • Mark Koernke Mark Koernke on Jan 30, 2022

    From your picture the flooring was not cut wide or long enough before applying the baseboard. I would buy enough quarter round trim paint to match the baseboard and nail into place it will cover those rough edges and give you a nice neat finish you are looking for.

  • Agnes Chrzanowska Agnes Chrzanowska on Jan 31, 2022

    Small gaps like that you can use wood filler .. wait till it dry, sand, add if needed more and paint

    • Patti Patti on Jul 06, 2022

      Wood filler ‘might’ crack given movement & settling of a house and traffic walking on the floor creating some movement. I think something with flexibility, such as caulk (not silicone caulk as it gathers dust!) might be a better solution! Just my opinion!

  • Chloe Crabtree Chloe Crabtree on Feb 04, 2022

    It can be caulked or you can add a quarter round molding there.

  • Louise Welsh Louise Welsh on Feb 07, 2022

    Be aware that changes in temperature affect the gaps you might be talking about. I have caulked my gaps two times, esp. with a silicone caulk, and in winter gaps get bigger, summer, they go back to normal. I live in Pennsylvania. Anyway the most satisfactory gap filler was quarter round molding.

    • Patti Patti on Jul 06, 2022

      That would be my choice to use the quarter round-plus I think it provides even more detailing to the baseboard and gives it a nice professional looking profile. Just my opinion though!

      Before adding the quarter round,

      for those don’t want to use caulk, (and depending on the amount of space available at the bottom of the baseboards), you could use small pieces of fibreglass insulation, or even better, the thin white rolls of foam they use for insulation around door and window jambs. Use a putty knife to push the foam (or small pieces of fibreglass) under the baseboards, tucking them in nice and tight. Depending on the thickness of your baseboards, you may be able to get it tucked in far enough that it’s not visible. A utility knife could trim it back just a touch if necessary, or you could just put the quarter round on and not have to worry about it. Although I like the look of the quarter round, I think something that should be taken into consideration is what room it is being used in. Areas like kitchens, bathrooms, entrance ways etc that see a lot of traffic (and possibly water) are areas that need more mopping…so unless you are extremely careful, those pieces of quarter round have the capacity to get ‘gunked up’ - or accumulate dirt, water, and any floor treatments you might use. Baseboards are the same of course, but with caulking along the bottom it would help prevent water from being absorbed into the wood (finished or not) and if they are MDF, they can break down if repeatedly in contact with water. Dust and dirt don’t accumulate quite as noticeably as on the quarter round too. Just some things to take into consideration!! Patti

  • Janice Janice on Feb 16, 2022

    Paintable silicone caulk will work well. If you have a lot to do, buy a caulk gun for ease of application. They are very inexpensive and will make the job easier.

  • Deb K Deb K on Mar 08, 2022

    Hello, first protect the floor with painter's tape, then apply a beige latex caulk, smooth it as needed then remove the painter tape carefully before the caulk dries. You will be happy with the results. Hope this helps you out

  • Mogie Mogie on Mar 22, 2022

    Use a paintable silicone caulk. The silicone caulking will move with the wall. Then after installing and patching just paint it the same color as the wall.

  • Agnes Chrzanowska Agnes Chrzanowska on Mar 31, 2022

    Caulking gun and caulk but you need to do it on the whole perimeter of your baseboard

  • Kmdreamer Kmdreamer on Apr 06, 2022

    Yes put a thin caulk on the base if you want usually they don’t do that .it looks good like that that is like that because not every floor it flat.

  • Janice Janice on Apr 30, 2022

    Hi Sharon, here's a video that will give you a method.

  • Kyle Kyle on May 02, 2022

    I used spray foam insulation. No more draft in this 1906 building. Also from time to time some "furry friends" have been known to sneak through there. Haven't seen them in a while either.

  • Ken Erickson Ken Erickson on Jun 23, 2022

    I just watched a caulking video on You Tube. I would only do top of baseboards. Floating floors may be affected by caulk as it expands.

  • David David on Jan 27, 2023

    Yes definitely fill the gap

  • Janice Janice on May 31, 2023

    To make your baseboards look great you can use panintable caulk. Most tubes fit into a caulk gun and you can change the size of the "line" by cutting the end of the caulk tube off either higher or lower to apply more or less. Then take your bare finger and run along the caulk line to smooth the line out for a professional appearance.

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Jul 31, 2023

    Mix caulking with a little ta to get a better colour mix. fill the holes. Leave to dry then sand down flush. Seal with clear varnish.

  • Betsy Betsy on Aug 12, 2023

    Hi Sharon: You can use wood putty to fill in the area. Put in a goodly amount and then smooth it out with either a plastic spoon or your finger, which you should stick in some water each time you want to touch the putty, to keep the putty from sticking to your finger and making a smoother edging. Let it dry completely before sweeping, mopping or vacuuming the area.

  • Shelly Graham Shelly Graham 7 days ago

    Caulking is an art; it's like finger painting! Use a Silicone (my preference) or Acrylic waterproofing caulk that matches the color of your baseboards, or clear. You'll need a caulking gun, caulking (GE SILICONE WATERPROOF), painters tape and a caulking tool kit! Less is best!

    Tape off the walls, floors and the top of the baseboards leaving only the gap open. This makes it easy and helps keep it looking neat! Do the entire length of each baseboard. Use the caulking tool to smooth out the bead.

    Hope this helps you out!

  • Shelly Graham Shelly Graham 7 days ago

    Caulking is an art; it's like finger painting! Use a Silicone (my preference) or Acrylic waterproofing caulk that matches the color of your baseboards, or clear. You'll need a caulking gun, caulking (GE SILICONE WATERPROOF), painters tape and a caulking tool kit! Less is best!

    Tape off the walls, floors and the top of the baseboards leaving only the gap open. This makes it easy and helps keep it looking neat! Do the entire length of each baseboard. Use the caulking tool to smooth out the bead.

    Hope this helps you out!