How to use a carpet knee kicker

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How to use a carpet knee kicker
The knee kciker helps you move carpet around. (jerry portelli/iStock/Getty Images)

If you're laying your own carpet, make the job easier by having all the right tools. One device that is helpful when installing a carpet is a knee kicker. A carpet knee kicker is used to lay down carpet in both large and small areas. Once you get the knack of using one, you'll find how easy it is to use and wonder how you'd ever install carpet without one.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Knee knicker

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  1. 1

    Nail tack strips to the floor along all the walls. Install the underpad for the carpet. Be careful not to cover the tack strips with the underpad.

  2. 2

    Lay out the carpet. Make sure it's laid out square to the room and is large enough to cover the entire floor. Ideally, the rug should overlap a few inches against each wall.

  3. 3

    Start in one corner of the room. Push the teeth of the knee kicker into the carpet approximately 2.5 cm (1 inch) from the wall.

  4. 4

    Slam your knee swiftly into the cushioned end of the knee kicker to hook the carpet onto the tack strip. It may take a couple of kicks to get the desired result. Remove lint from the teeth as you move along to ensure the kicker is firmly grabbing the carpet.

  5. 5

    Finish using the knee kicker along one wall, then use a carpet stretcher to stretch out any bumps in the carpet and to attach the other sides of the carpet to the tack strip.

Tips and warnings

  • Applying firm and steady pressure by placing the cushioned end just above your knee may sometimes work as well as slamming your knee into the knee kicker.
  • A knee kicker is a great tool for installing carpet on stairs.
  • A carpet knee kicker does not take the place of a carpet stretcher. The two tools should be used in conjunction with each other. New carpet can develop wrinkles within six months if a carpet stretcher is not used.
  • Use the knee kicker only along one wall, then use the carpet stretcher to stretch and attach the carpet along the rest of the tack strips.

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