Common Carpet Seam Mistakes

Carpet for Your Home
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Laying the Perfect Carpet

Choosing the perfect carpet for your home can be a satisfying project. But laying it and making sure the seams match and are in perfect alignment can be a challenge for both homeowner and experienced installer alike. Perfecting the seams upon application and ensuring they remain intact and neat over the life of the piece can be done easily with simple tools and attention to detail.

Different seaming methods will depend upon the particular job as well as the type of floor covering used. Matching seams that meet between old and new pieces can require a certain amount of finesse and detail, while matching those with an entirely new application can prove slightly less complicated. Either way, laying fresh flooring can add a completely new look and feel to your home while adding to its value in what can be a very cost-effective manner if done well. To make sure your carpet seams are matched properly, avoid some of the pit falls mentioned below.

Carpet Seams Unraveling

When seams begin to unravel, this is usually a sign that the individual ends of the pieces were not sealed themselves. When the ends of the flooring pieces are not sealed by the manufacturer, they can unravel during or even after they are installed. Standard seaming methods used upon application will not prevent such an issue and each end should be sealed individually prior to seaming at installation. Direct your installer to ensure that any cut ends are sealed prior to being installed. This will help prevent an unsightly pull which can lead to premature wear and tear of your flooring choice.

Discolored Seams

Discolored carpet seams can ruin the entire floor covering and the look of any room. Most issues with discolored seams stem from an application iron set at too high a heat level. To avoid this, make certain the heat level chosen is in accordance with the manufacturer’s installation instructions, usually set between 3 and 4. Use the proper adhesive materials and methods designed for that particular type of piece and make sure that all tools are free from dirt and debris prior to installation. Since moisture during the seaming process can also cause discoloration, ensure that moisture from steam can escape during each pass of the heated iron so as to avoid this issue as well.

Seams Splitting

When seams are not properly matched and adhered to one another during installation, they can separate later on causing unsightly splitting, wrinkles and puckering. As this can lead to a dangerous trip hazard, it is especially important to avoid this mistake. When deciding upon the layout and positioning of your pieces, make sure the seams do not match in doorways or other areas with commonly heavy and consistent foot traffic is the norm. When possible, set seams away from heavy furniture locations or where consistent pressure can lead to pulling of the piece at the seam’s location.

Matching old and new seams

One of the more aggravating aspects of carpet installation is trying to match the seams of new pieces with those of the existing ones. Since existing pieces may have padding that is not as substantial as that which may be used with a newer application, consider using a thinner, less dense padding that is the same thickness as the original piece. This may cut down on the height of the pile and the density of the piece itself making the height of each seam more uniform. Make sure to properly stretch the old and new pieces as close together as possible. Apply seam tape or adhesive and use a seam iron set at the proper temperature according to manufacturer’s directions for the new piece.

Once your new carpet is installed, vacuum over each seam to ensure they match in as best a manner as possible. While not all obvious seams can be avoided, following these simple steps before, during and after the installation will ensure your new floors retain as smooth an appearance and as hearty a durability as possible during the life of their use.

Carpet Seaming

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