Carpet installation

DIY Carpet Installation

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Easy DIY Carpet Installation

DIY carpet installation fitting
DIY carpet installation

Doing a DIY carpet installation can literally save you thousands. The general materials required are easy to find and use. With patience and precision in your measurements and cutting, you will have a carpet that is snug from wall to wall!

Materials and tools needed:

  • Carpet Foam
  • Carpet
  • Knee Kicker
  • Seamer
  • Seam Tape
  • Seam Roller
  • Staple gun
  • Utility knife or razor blade/box cutter
  • Pry bar
  • Tack Strips
  • Transition Strip

The carpet foam is an area of your installation you don’t want to skimp. Simply because this has a huge impact on the softness of your carpet (bounce you feel or don’t feel as you step). You ever visit someone’s house and walking on their carpet feels like a hardwood floor? They may have a beautiful carpet, but in this case think cheap, low quality carpet foam. Carpet foam is relatively inexpensive in the grand scheme of things. Unfortunately, to my knowledge you can’t buy it cut to size but rather in big rolls as much as 274ft for $99.

Selecting Carpet

First and foremost, you get what you pay for. However, sometimes a carpet may be on clearance due to its color. Sometimes a carpet may not sell as much as others due to the lack of features i.e., stain protection. When it comes to carpet, the colors and price range can accommodate your taste and budget. Yes, there is even clearance carpet. This is not because it’s worn, it may just not be selling and it’s time to clear the shelf. So think about your color scheme and purpose for carpet. If you have pets make sure your carpet choice and carpet foam support pets i.e., Stainmaster.

Optional Tools for Carpet Installation

Now I’ll talk about tools for installation. The knee kicker is a tool that you basically “knee” or hit with your knee to pull the edges of the carpet onto the tack strip and close to the wall. There are some YouTube videos of people jumping across the room to move the carpet towards the edges of the room. For security and peace of mind, I suggest you use the knee kicker.

A carpet seamer allows for connecting the parts of a carpet that were cut or simply need to be joined together. This is especially helpful, when carpet is damaged in a spot beyond repair, just get a new piece and use the seam gun to basically glue it all together at the seams. Doing this work requires seam tape. Some people recommend a heat gun, we recommend a seam gun. Lastly, in regards to seams, a seam roller can be used to smooth out the carpet where it has been seamed together. This helps so the fibers don’t seem frayed or going in different directions. This is useful around tack strips as well. You basically use it like a lint roller. 

Recommended Tools

A staple gun is necessary to hold your carpet foam in place. Imagine a piece of paper with a bigger piece of paper on top and nothing anchoring that bottom piece of paper. That is like not stapling your carpet foam to the floor. Positioning is everything so be strategic when stapling your carpet foam. Use multiple staples to secure the foam in place.

The next tool you will need for your carpet installation is a box cutter or utility razor. If you have a different type of blade that is sharp enough to cut cleanly, then use it. You want to cut your carpet and carpet foam cleanly so they fit plush against the wall or other pieces of carpet or foam. 

A pry bar can be used if you need to remove previous tack strip. A tack strip is about 7/8in to 1in wide strip of wood with sharp tacky edges to catch the backside of the carpet and hold in place. Depending on the condition of the previous tack strip you may decide to reuse it. You should use caution if there was a previous history of pets, soiled carpet, odor, mold, etc.

A pry bar can also be used to remove the transition strips that were previously used. This could be a variety of reasons i.e., warped transition strip, sharp edges have formed, you’d like a different color, etc. You need a pry bar because they are generally nailed into the floor. If you don’t have a pry bar and can’t buy one, then use the back side of the hammer that is used for gripping nails. 

An Easy Carpet Installation

After gathering all the materials, you are off to installing. The first thing to do is remove the previous carpet and/or prep the floor. To have an easy carpet installation, everything must be prepped and measured accurately.

The following is one of the biggest DIY carpet install tips. When you cut your carpet cut an 1-1.5 inches longer than you need. Remember cutting carpet can’t be reversed, so it’s always better to have too much than not enough! 

I hope this post has been helpful and has answered some of your questions about the DIY carpet installation process. See my other post for more details on installing your carpet. Best of luck as you continuing DIYing!


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