Carpet flooring – How is it installed?

Carpet flooring is one of those things you things you probably ask yourself how it’s done, right?

Hire a professional – that’s how.

Can you do it on your own?  Sure.  If you have the proper tools, and know how.  Is it worth the headache of trying?  Not really.

That being said, here is a pretty simplistic run down of the process.

1. Determine the Area of the Room

Measure the longest walls in your room.  Next, multiply the length and width, and divide by 9 to determine the square yardage. It’s always best to add 10% to allow for irregularities, errors, waste, and pattern matching.

2. Clean the Sub-floor

You want the surface to that is going to be carpeted to be smooth and clean. Scrape any paint or joint compound, sweep and vacuum the floor thoroughly.

3. Remove the Doors

If you can, remove the doors from the rooms you are carpeting so you won’t have to work around them. Having the doors out of the way will make it easier for you to cut off the bottoms of the doorjambs if necessary.

4. Install the Tack Strips

Cut the tack strips to size with a strip cutter or heavy snips. Nail the strips 1/2 inch from the wall.  Do not install tack strips across thresholds or doorways; the tacks on the strips are pretty sharp and could poke through the carpet and hurt your feet. Tack strips come in a variety of heights, thicknesses and widths. You want to make sure you are using the correct size. If you are installing carpet over a concrete sub-floor, use masonry tacks or epoxy adhesive to hold the tack strips in place.

5. Install the Carpet Pad

Lay out the carpet pad perpendicular to the direction you plan to install the carpet, and staple it near the tack strips with a staple hammer.

6. Staple Any Pad Seams

Staple the seam of the pad, alternating staples so that they are not beside one another. Stretch the padding so that the pieces are butted tightly together.

7. Trim the Pad

Feel through the padding to locate the tack strip, then use a utility knife to cut away the padding along the interior edge of the strip so that all the tacks are exposed.

8. Notch Corners for Trimming

Measure the room at its longest point, then add 3″ to the measurement. If you an, take the carpet outside, and notch the back on both sides at the appropriate length. The carpet will be easier to handle outside. If possible, have someone help you.

9. Trim the Carpet to Size

Roll the carpet with the back facing outward until the notched areas show. Then run a chalk line from notch to notch. Cut the back of the carpet along the chalk line, roll up the carpet, and take it back inside.

10. Trim the Excess Carpet

Roll out the carpet into the room. Keep it as straight as possible. Cut away excess carpet, but leave about 3″ extra next to the walls. Lay out any additional carpet needed to fill the room.

11. Glue the Seams Together

Where the carpet edges join, you’ll need to create a seam. The seamed edges of both carpet segments must be straight. Check the edges: don’t assume that a factory edge is straight. Place a piece of seaming tape under the seam, adhesive side up. Heat the seaming iron to the temperature recommended by the tape manufacturer, and rest it directly on the tape for 15 to 30 seconds. Then slowly slide the iron along the tape, and press the seam into the melted glue behind the iron. After the pieces are joined, place heavy objects on the seam to hold it in place as the glue dries. Seams should run parallel to the room’s main light source. And make sure the pile of both pieces leans in the same direction.

12. Trim Around the Obstacles

Dry-fit the carpet, butting one end against a wall. Use a carpet knife to trim the carpet to fit around obstacles.

13. Attach the First Edge of the Carpet

Attach the carpet to the tackless strips at one end of the room, using the knee kicker. Place the face of the knee kicker against the carpet about 3″ away from the wall, and forcefully strike the padded end to stretch the carpet over the tackless strips.

14. Trim the Excess from the Edges

Trim excess carpet with a wall trimmer, which rests against the wall and provides a straight cut at the correct spot. Use a stair tool to press the cut edges underneath the baseboard trim.

15. Stretch the Carpet

Use the power stretcher to attach to the strips on the other side of the room. For corners and alcoves where the power stretcher can’t reach, use the knee kicker and stair tool.

16. Use the Binder Bar

Nail a binder bar to any areas where the carpet ends without abutting a wall such as a threshold. Stretch the carpet with the knee kicker to link to the hooks in the binder bar then use a wooden block or scrap piece of lumber to close the binder bar onto the edge of the carpet.

17. Finish Trimming the Carpet

When all the carpet is in place, cut out the vent openings. Attach shoe molding around the room if desired.

All of that should be more than enough to deter even the most determined DIY types.

But…  Before all of that happens, you still have to pick out the carpet you like.

Shaw has quite a broad selection of carpets to include their Truaccents collection.  You can also find some great selections at Dreamweaver.

Be sure to check out our website for great offers, or better yet, come to our showroom at 8643 W Kelton Ln Suite 105 in Peoria!

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