Carpet Fitting Guide

Updated July 20, 2017

Fitting a carpet is often a job that people leave to professional carpet fitters. With the right tools and a little physical effort, however, almost anyone can take on this job. Following the right procedure will save you money on the cost of having a tradesman fit the carpet for you, money that could be put towards a better quality for your home.

Sweep and vacuum the floor to remove any debris or grit. Hammer down any raised nails in floorboards that could damage your carpet from the underside. Remove the entrance door from its hinges and store in another room.

Place a carpet gripper strip 1/2-inch from the wall with the teeth facing upwards and towards the wall. Nail in place with 1-inch nails at 12-inch intervals. Move around the room laying carpet gripper strips next to each other and nailing in place as you go. Do not put a gripper across the doorway.

Roll out an underlay strip starting from the wall closest to the door and trim to length so it sits just inside the gripers. Lay the next roll against the first and trim to fit inside the gripper strips. Use carpet tape to join the two sections of underlay together. Continue until you reach the opposite wall furthest from the door. Use a utility knife to trim the width of the last roll if needed.

Bring the carpet into the room and align one side with the wall and push the edge onto the carpet grippers on that side. Adjust this edge to smooth any bumps then place the knee-kicker on the carpet and, facing away from the wall, bang your knee into the kicker tool to secure the carpet firmly on the gripper.

Roll the carpet out fully across the room and check that the carpet is square to the walls. Put the knee-kicker into the edge of the carpet and bang your knee into it facing the wall to stretch it over the grippers along that wall.

Smooth the carpet out from the centre using your hands and ensure no folds or uneven spots remain. Stretch the sides of the carpet over the side wall grippers using the knee-kicker, facing towards the wall being secured.

Run a bolster chisel along the edges of the carpet forcing it beneath the skirting. Trim the excess carpet using a utility knife.

Hammer carpet tacks 4-inches apart into the carpet across the doorway. Insert the decorative threshold trim plate using 1/2-inch self-tapping screws driven in with an electric screwdriver. Re-hang the door and check to be sure it opens and shuts without snagging the carpet.

Things You'll Need

  • Carpet
  • Underlay
  • Carpet gripper strips
  • Hammer
  • 1-inch nails
  • 10 carpet tacks per doorway
  • Knee-kicker tool
  • Knee-pad
  • Utility knife
  • Bolster chisel
  • Decorative threshold trim
  • 4 1-inch self tapping screws
  • Electric screwdriver
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About the Author

Richard May provides niche Web content for various clients via online forum sites and other outlets. He has technical writing experience, having written training manuals for bespoke and commercial software applications, and holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism.