When it comes to insulating draughty Victorian floorboards, necessity is the mother of invention

A good floorboard gap seal can make a massive difference to the warmth of your home, as 15% of its heat can be lost through the floor. When Harry Dewick-Eisele, head of a fire safety company in the Midlands, couldn’t find anything that would work in his own draughty home, he invented it himself.

Inventor of draughtex

Harry Dewick-Eisele, 44, sells fire safety products for a living. Based in Lincolnshire, he used to live in a period Victorian three-storey town house with original features like skirting, coving and beautiful warm-coloured, stained and polished floorboards.

Only trouble was, like many properties of the same age, it was cold and draughty which made it freezing in winter, especially in the hall.

Harry realised it was the gaps in those floorboards that were letting in cold air, and were making it worse.

“It would’ve beeen a crime to cover the floorboards with carpets,” he says, so he set about trying to find something to fill the gaps with.

Over the years Harry tried various different floor fillers but none were quite right. Filling the gaps with a hard floor sealant meant that the filler cracked as the floor contracted and expanded with the temperature, and then eventually fell out.

He tried other methods too, but they all had similar drawbacks.

This got Harry thinking about what would make a perfect floor seal, something that could expand and contract with the wood and that would not fall through the gap over time.

He’d been looking at extending his company’s product range into energy saving products anyway, and when he had the idea of a flexible floorboard sealer, he decided they should do it themselves.

Theirs would be cleverly manufactured with thousands of concealed air pockets to allow the sealant to be compressed to almost 90% of its original profile, and so be able to stretch and squash down without snapping.

It took some trial and error, but eventually they got it right: DraughtEx floorboard gap seal can now be installed without the use of adhesives and its dark colour (called “Shadow”) is designed to mimic the natural shadow created between floorboards, so it’s almost invisible to the eye.

Once Harry had installed it into his hallway he could feel the warmth from the radiator there for the first time since moving into the house.

Which just shows, if you can’t find the right thing for the job, there’s always do it yourself!

Draughtex Floorboard Gap Seal is available to buy here.