How to fit a carpet ?

It is important to consider your options before installing your carpet and ensuring that you choose the right option for you. There are a range of affordable carpets available to suit all homes and rooms, but expert advice is also crucial to installing your carpet correctly.

Anyway, let’s get started…

Please note: it is advisable to wear gloves when using a carpet gripper due to the sharpness of the protruding pins, knee pads when using a carpet kicker and goggles when hammering in the gripper tacks.

Step 1 – Prepare the floor


Make sure you remove all existing flooring. It is much easier to remove old carpet and underlay when it is cut into 1m wide segments – simply roll the fabric and carry it out of the room.

Then vacuum and sweep up the floor to eliminate any traces of debris. Also, if your floor is wooden, nail or screw down any floorboards that may have come loose.

Step 2 – Install a carpet gripper

Now you are ready to use the carpet gripper. Usually you can find a dual-purpose carpet gripper that is suitable for use on both concrete and timber floors.

Nail your carpet gripper around the perimeter of the room, leaving a space of one and a half times the thickness of the carpet to be laid, with the nails inserted into the gripper. You need to position the gripper so that the pins are on the top side and facing the wall, before cropping to size around all walls of the room. Then, using the pre-inserted nails, secure the gripper to the floor.

Step 3 – Install underlay

The next stage is installing the underlay, which needs to be cut down to size in order to the fit the floor. The underlay should be fitted all of the way up to the gripper without covering it, because the gripper will secure the carpet afterwards. Then you need to secure the underlay to the floor. On wooden floors, this can be done by using pins or staples every 20 cm. If your floor is concrete you can use glue or spray adhesive, but you must ensure that this is completely dry before proceeding. Normally, you shouldn’t have any overlaps with the underlay, but it may an idea to cover the joins with tape to ensure that the surface is smooth.

Step 4 – Installing the carpet


When you are bringing the carpet into the room to make sure you are careful because you could mark the walls or other decorated surfaces. Carefully position and roll out the carpet in preparation for fitting. If there is any excess, in length or width, then trim the carpet so the excess is no longer than 10 cm, which will make the carpet a lot easier to manage and fit.

Next, you will need to stretch and fix down the carpet to the gripper. Pick up the carpet kicker and then, starting with one wall, put the teeth of the kicker into the carpet approximately 25 cm from the wall. Then push the cushioned end of the knee kicker with your knee and this will then attach the carpet to the gripper. You can also rub along the edge of the carpet, which pushes it further onto the gripper, in order to ensure a firmer hold. Continue the process along each of the other walls until the carpet is suitably stretched and firmly fixed to the gripper. The carpet should be firm, but ensure that the knee kicker is not overused because you may inadvertently rip the carpet.

Next trim and remove the excess, whilst leaving approximately 10mm of carpet for tucking in. Fold and tuck the 10mm of carpet between the carpet gripper and the skirting board using the stair tool, which leaves you with a beautifully tidy and smooth finish.

Finally vacuum and enjoy your new carpet. Job done!

Erin Emanuel