How To Fix A Wobbly Table: An All-In-One Detailed Guide




Do you need some help fixing a wobbly table? Don’t worry. I’ve got you.

Hi! I am a DIY enthusiast. I started doing this when I was 8, and I’ve been in love ever since.

I turned it into my profession, and in the 5 years of my professional life, I’ve worked on countless woodworking projects.

How to fix a wobbly table? It is really easy. There are 5 easy steps that you can follow to make your table stable again. 

I can assure you that you will not only be able to fix it but also prevent it from ever happening again.

How To Fix A Wobbly Table

Let’s start with a quick glimpse of today’s topic:

Fix Wobbly Table

Prepare the table for the process and identify the problems. You can use these 5 super steps to fix the wobbliness. These are- adjusting the leg, tightening the screws, strengthening the joints, fixing the damaged parts, and fixing uneven floor.

Are you thinking about starting it already? I have a  lot there for you that you need to understand. I’ll also be sharing some tips and tricks to do these things efficiently.

So, without wasting any more time, let’s roll it!

An overview of the project-

Estimated CostEstimated DurationSkill Level
$1505 hoursBeginner

Summery of the article is-

  • Wobbling side to side can be caused by uneven legs, uneven floor, or a combination of both.
  • To strengthen the weak joints, use strong adhesive like wood glue in the joints.
  • If you can’t lift the table to identify the problematic leg, use a level or do a sliding paper test.

Causes And Signs Of Wobbly Table

I know everyone is known to the wobbleness of a table and knows what a wobbly table meaning. But I must say one thing from my experience of a long time, about half of the people facing this issue don’t know why it happens.

You may know that the wobbliness of a table means the unstable, uneven, or shaky quality of the table and there are a few reasons behind this wobbleness of a table. Well, yes, you heard it right.

Wanna know the reasons behind this issue? Let me help you with this. Ready to learn? Let’s directly roll out the reasons.

Causes And Signs Of Wobbly Table

Uneven Legs 

From my experience as a professional, I must tell you one thing: In most cases, I have seen that the reason behind the wobbliness of my clients’ tables is the uneven legs. This is the major cause of wobbly tables, even folding tables.

Weird but true! I know, you might be thinking, if you made your table so perfectly, then how would it get uneven legs? Actually, this happens! Because of daily usage or overtime, it can happen.

But know one thing: if your table has uneven legs, this is a reason for the wobbleness. 

Uneven Floor

If your table wobbles side to side, it is because of uneven floor. The reason can also be uneven legs or a combination of both. But mostly, it is a result of placing your table on an uneven floor. Which can even lead your table to scratches from black glass.

Weak Joints

If your concern is how to fix wobbly pedestal table top, let me tell you. The cause of this issue is weak joints.

When the joints of your table develop one or more weak spots, it wobbles. And ultimately, when any of the legs or joints get damaged, the table loses its structural integrity.

Loose Screws

Did you know that the screws and bolts that are holding different parts of the table together can become loose over time? Yes! It is possible.

However, it actually drives the table to imbalance situations and instability.

It is common for old tables. So, if you want to know how to fix a wobbly antique table, you may need to look for the loose screws.

Here’s a quick recap to help you better understand the causes and signs of the wobbliness; 

Causes & SignsDescription
Uneven LegsEven if one of the legs of your table gets shorter, it creates an imbalance, causes your table to lose its stability, and your table ends up wobbling.
Uneven FloorAn uneven floor causes imbalance and makes your table wobble.
Weak JointsWhen the joints of your table become weak, the table starts to wobble.
Loose ScrewsThe screws and bolts in your wood table become loose over time and cause your table to wobble.

I know you are waiting for the fixing process but learning the causes is really important. It will be in many ways in the future. 

I’ll talk more about it but for now, let’s move on to the part you are here for.

How To Fix A Wobbly Table?

I know you are already tired of looking for the right ways to fix your wobbly table. Don’t worry. 

I will be sharing 5 easy steps with you that will make your table completely stable like it was when it was new.

So, shall we start? Let’s proceed;

How To Fix A Wobbly Table

Prepare The Table

To fix a rocking table, remove all the objects from the table. It should be completely empty if you are going to work on it.

Then, clean your table properly. Use a mild cleaner and a soft cloth to clean the table.

Identify The Problem

After the preparations, look for all the possible problems that are causing the table to wobble.

It will help you to determine the type of fixes you need to remove the wobbliness.

Fix The Problem

How do you fix a loose table top? There are a few different causes of a loose or wobbly table. All of these issues have different fixes. These are;

Adjust the Leg

If uneven table legs cause the wobble, adjust the length of the shorter leg by adding shims or furniture levelers to make it even with the others.

Shims are thin blocks of wood. You will find these in any local hardware shops.

However, let me suggest a simple solution, rubber wedges can be installed under the uneven table legs to stabilize the table and fix the wobbleness.

You can fix your wobbly TV tray table using shims too. If all those things feels troublesome to you.

How to fix a loose table leg? That’s a different issue. Loose table legs can be caused by loose screws or weak joints.

Tighten Screws

If the problem is loose screws, tighten the screws with an appropriate head screwdriver.

How to fix a wobbly round table top? If it still wobbles after tightening the screws, put some more bolts or brackets to add extra support.

Use a power drill and make some pilot holes where needed. Now, insert the screws. Make sure to use a drill bit while drilling.

Strengthen Joints

How to fix a loose table top? You may need to strengthen the weak joints. Use strong adhesive like wood glue in the joints.

Fix Damaged Parts

If any of the damaged parts is what is causing the wobble, you might fix it before trying the other steps.

If you have a veneer table, repairing the damaged veneer table top is the same as a wooden one.

To fix a water-damaged veneer table top, expose it to direct sunlight. 

Make sure to put some damp towels on top of it so the sunlight doesn’t directly hit the wobbly table or it will cause more damage, especially if it is an antique table.

To fix a split tabletop, fill the gap with wood fillers. You will be able to restore a teak veneer table this way, too.

Fix For Uneven Floor

How do you level wobbly furniture? If the cause is an uneven floor, use shims or furniture levelers on the uneven side as a temporary fix until you fix the floor.

If the problem is too serious and you don’t have any of those near you, you can use a wad of napkins or a piece of cardboard as a temporary fix until you get those.

Simply just fold the wad of napkins and place it under the uneven table or table leg.

How to fix a wobbly table on carpet? It will be hard to do that because you won’t be able to find the exact cause if it is on the carpet.

How to fix a shaky table? The shaky table should be fixed if you follow these 5 steps. 

However, if you face any problem during the process, you can get help from online forums and websites.

Some platforms even have download article options for many articles of staff writers as well. So, that should help.

However, I can suggest one more thing, you can join the program furniture making at Madison Area Technical College (MATC) and get enough knowledge about fixing furniture.

Ways To Find Out Which Leg Is Causing The Wobble

How to fix a swaying table? The cause of a swaying table is usually the legs. But the question comes, which leg is causing the wobble?

Let’s find out how;

  • Lift the table slightly off the ground so that all the legs are off the floor.
  • Gently put the table back on the floor and see which leg makes contact first.
  • Listen for any uneven contact or rocking as the table touches the ground.
  • The leg that makes the contact last or doesn’t make full contact with the floor is most likely the source of the wobble.

Easy, right? However, you will need some more people to do this. Let them lift the table so you can observe and listen.

Here Is What To Do If Table Is Too Heavy To Lift

As I said earlier, you need to lift your table to see which leg is causing the swaying table. But what if the table is too heavy to lift?

I know this question has already passed through your mind. So, here is the answer;


Observe the table while it is in use. Look for any uneven contact or swaying when something is placed on the table. 

This will help you to identify which leg is not making full contact with the floor.

Test Using A Level

To check for unevenness, place a level on different areas of the table. 

The bubble in the level will indicate which section of the table is not level. It will help you to identify the problematic leg.

Sliding Paper test

Slide a piece of paper under each leg of the table. 

If the paper slides easily under one leg than the others, it indicates that the leg is not making proper contact with the floor.

That’s it. These are the easiest yet most efficient ways to find out the problematic leg. Hope, these tricks will help you fix your shaky dining room table.

Ways To Make A Table More Sturdy

How can I make my table more sturdy? If you fix the wobbliness of your table, it will automatically become sturdy.

However, if you are still not satisfied and want to make it even more stable, here are a few ways to do that;

Ways To Make A Table More Sturdy

Add Support

Use some more screws, bolts, or brackets to add some additional support to make the table more stable.

You can use wood glue to the joints before putting the screws. Make sure to let the wood glue completely dry before you insert the screws.

Install Bracing

Add cross braces between the legs of the table to provide additional support to prevent wobbling.

If you want to know how to fix a wobbly metal table leg, installing braces will be a great option for you.

Add Weight To The Base

For lightweight tables, consider adding weight to the base to increase stability. You can use weighted bases or add ballast material to your table.

If you do these things right after fixing your wobbly table, your table will be as stable as a new one. 

DIY Vs Professional [The Comparison]

However, many people are actually confused about whether they should try DIY techniques or go for a fixing service by professionals. So, I was thinking why not share the comparison with you if you are also somehow confused?

DIYProfessional Service
Doesn’t cost that muchKind of expensive
You may need to buy some unavailable tools or materialsThey have all the necessary things
If the right techniques are not applied properly, there is a possibility of getting a bad resultAnyhow, they will provide you the best result
Some basic skills are enough to fix itThey will complete the process through advanced skill level
Kind of time-consumingComplete the process quicker
For small issues you may not need to spend a single pennyEven for a small issue they charge money and that can be costly

Tips To Prevent Table From Wobbling

How do you stop a table from wobbling? You must regularly inspect and maintain your table to do that.

Here are some tips to maintain the table to prevent future wobbling;

Tips To Prevent Table From Wobbling
  • If the problem is unstable table legs, you can place adhesive furniture pads or felt pads under the legs that can help stabilize the table.
  • You can use shims or furniture levelers to stabilize the legs.
  • If the table is slightly wobbling, you can just cut a strip of cardboard into the size of the table leg and place it under it to prevent it from wobbling.
  • You can also try cross bracing table legs.

These tips will help you to effectively stabilize your table and prevent it from wobbling anytime in the future.

Top 3 Causes of Standing Desk Wobble and How You Can Avoid It

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)

Are There Specific Solutions For Wobbly Outdoor Tables?

You can try leveling the ground, adding weight to the base, and weatherproofing your wobbly outdoor table.

Can A Wobbly Table Affect Its Lifespan?

The wobbliness causes wear and tear, surface damage, and different safety concerns which makes the wobbly table lose its structural integrity and also its lifespan.

What Is The Wobbly Table Theorem?

The wobbly table theorem is an informal concept meaning a sudden experience of coming across a wobbly table in a restaurant or cafe.

Why Does Rotating A Table Stop It From Wobbling?

Rotating a wobbly table can sometimes stop it from wobbling because of the interaction between the table legs and the floor.

Final Thoughts

How to fix a wobbly table? Here are the 5 easy steps to do that.

Before you start the steps, make sure to prepare the table properly and identify the problems.

Then perform the steps for your specific problems. And you will have your sturdy table back.

It is as easy as it seems. There are no complicated steps. Just make sure to follow the instructions properly.

I can assure you will be able to stabilize your table again. All the best!

If you are interested in learning more about restoring a table, stay with- Restore Journey.

Richard Journey

Written by

Richard Journey

Meet Richard Journey, the Antique Furniture Maestro. With a Fine Arts degree in Furniture Restoration and Conservation, he’s a guardian of historical craftsmanship. His accolades include the Golden Chisel Award, and he’s your guide to discovering and restoring antique treasures.

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