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DIY Ways to Install Berber Carpet

Updated on June 18, 2012

Some Information on Berber Carpet

Berber carpet is a fabric floor covering that has upright strands that are denser than most carpets. There will be a combination of large and small tufts. Berber carpet has one continuous loop and is therefore resistant to crushing. Their normally speckled pattern can also hide dirt. Installing of Berber carpet is difficult because of the weave pattern which requires matching at the seams. While DIY and installing Berber carpet you may need to order extra material to match the patterns which can cause wastage.

DIY Tools for Berber Carpet Laying

Installing Berber carpet by DIY one would need to first assemble certain tools to facilitate the laying. Besides the normal stapler, knife, hammer and measuring tape it is better to equip yourself with work gloves, kneepads and safety glasses. You would need tackless strips to start the work from the edge of the rooms.

Tackless strips are wood strips that are placed beneath the edge of carpeting. They have small hooks or nails which point towards the edge and upward. Once carpeting is stretched beyond this strip, the hooks grip the carpet backing and see that the carpet remains in place.

Other tools that are necessary are a power stretcher, knee kicker, seaming tape iron, cutter and roller. These can be taken on rent for the day that you do the job. Most carpet laying operations can be completed in one day for a single room if you have made all the necessary preparations.

Lastly of course you need the new Berber carpet and carpet underlay.

Laying Berber Carpet

You would first need to get rid of the old carpet and underlay. Vacuum the old carpet, so that any dust on it does not cause you problems while you remove it. Remove all the trim that is there at floor level, as the new carpet would have to go under it. Cut the old carpet so that it is easy to roll up. Separate the carpet from the tackless strips at one side of the room and roll up the carpet. It is better not to use the old underlay as it would have lost most of its cushioning effect and would be worn out. Now remove the old tackless strips, as these would also have lost their gripping power and are better replaced. Once the floor is clear, clean it and examine it for any raised floorboards or other floor defects. Correct this before you start laying the new carpet.

Install new tackless strips at the room perimeter, while keeping doorways clear. The strips should be about 1/2 inch away from the wall with pins facing towards the wall. Now put down the underlay in strips, so that it overlaps the strips. The strips to cover the room need to butt against each other and not overlap as this would cause the seams to be raised. Now staple the underlay, which is over the strips. Use duct tape to seal the seams that butt against each other.

The first piece of carpet that you lay needs to overlap the edge of the floor by 4 to 6 inches. While you are cutting to get this length, use a board so that the underlay is not damaged. See if the seams that can result from large room sizes, are in places that have lesser traffic. Now lay down the second piece of carpet with the same longer length and also overlapping the first piece by a few inches. Now use your knife to cut both pieces of the carpet, so that both the pieces have edges that match perfectly. Now you need to put the seaming tape centered on the joint location, so that the adhesive faces upwards. Now use the seaming iron on the tape to activate the adhesive and then butt the edge of the carpet together and place over the tape. Use a carpet roller to make sure that the seam is sealed properly.

A knee kicker is then used to fix the carpet at one edge of the room. This will grip the carpet at one end and allow you stretch the carpet on to the tackless strips. Now a carpet stretcher will allow you to finish the job of laying. Place one end of the stretcher against the wall where you have already used the knee kicker to install one edge. The other end will grip the carpet 6 inches from the further wall and enable you to stretch the carpet till you are able to fix it to the tackless strips at that end. Now trim the carpet that goes beyond the strips leaving enough to go under the trim that you had removed. Reinstall the trim. Trim the carpet at doorways, so that the edge falls under the closed door. You can then install a door edge strip over it, so that the carpet does not trip you up when you cross the threshold.

Once these steps have been completed you now have installed a Berber carpet and done it yourself.

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