You’ve carefully shopped, considered your options and chosen carpet as the flooring solution for the way you live. Preparing for the installation of your beautiful new carpet will make the entire installation process go faster and more efficiently. Being prepared will also be a lot less stressful on you -- and your home. So check out the information below, be prepared and anticipate, then look forward with confidence to the day your new carpet arrives.

Work with the Pros
Carpet installation is a skill that is developed through years of experience.
Understanding the basics of carpet installation will increase your knowledge of the process and enhance your confidence in the professionals working in your home.

The installers will begin with the seaming diagram.
This shows the overall layout of the carpet, the correct placement of seams and transitions, and assists them in the preparation and cutting of the carpet.

Seams separate do-it-yourself installers from the professionals.
While seams are inevitable, it’s the professionals who excel at minimizing and hiding seams. They call on years of experience and tried and true methods. Case in point: they’ll insure seams are placed away from areas subjected to pivoting traffic, and not run seams perpendicular to doorway openings. Some carpet styles can show the placement of the seam tape more than others. This is referred to as telegraphing, or peaking, and it is particularly noticeable in low cut pile and looped carpets. A seam may be excellent and considered ‘tight’ but can still be seen. You should keep in mind that, occasionally, additional carpet must be ordered to better match patterns at the seams. You should discuss this with your retailer and understand that this will add to the cost.

The pros minimize transitional ups and downs.
When two different flooring products meet – say, carpeting and a hardwood floor – it’s called a transition. Your professional installers will try to match the surface heights of various flooring products to minimize transitions.

What to do Before the Day of Installation

Begin with your furniture.
Remove all furniture and other objects and materials from the areas to be carpeted. Some installers will move your furniture, but there may be an additional charge for doing so. Before moving, you’ll also need to empty the contents of china cabinets, closets and the like.

Out with the old – remove your present floor covering.
Please consider how your old floor covering will be taken up and disposed of. This can be a time consuming task. We recommend that you check with your retailer about the cost and the method of disposal. If you prefer to remove your present floor covering, do it at least one day prior to installation to allow for cleanup and floor preparation. If removing old carpet, please leave tackstrips in place and pull the staples out of the floor from the original pad.

Don’t be left out on a limb about your trim.
You should know that, in many cases, moldings and baseboards need to be removed for carpet installation. Your installer may do this but at an additional charge and they will probably not be responsible for damage or breakage due to dry or brittle wood. Painted baseboards, woodwork and paint may need retouching after the installation is complete. If necessary, this is your responsibility.

There’s no substitute for subflooring.
Your existing subfloor may need to be prepared to receive the carpet, or a new subfloor may be required. We suggest you discuss this with your retailer and, if subfloor work is necessary, that it be done by qualified professionals.

Do this to insure an open door policy.
When carpeting is installed, there’s always the possibility that the doors, especially closet doors, basement and bedroom doors, may not clear the new carpet and swing free. Some installers will remove doors in order to install the carpet and re-hang them if possible. They probably won’t shave or cut down doors to insure clearance. You should check with your retailer/installer as to their policy and the cost. You may need to arrange for a qualified carpenter to provide this service after the installation of your new carpet.

Check-up on the clean-up.
Installing new carpet will produce waste. Usually these materials are collected by your installer and and disposed of for a set fee. Check with your retailer before the day of installation so you’re clear about the clean up, if there are added costs, and ask about the plan for carpet remnants.

What to do During Installation

Install yourself at home on installation day.
Be prepared to be at home the day of installation and be available in case the installation crew has questions. Your presence will insure that the correct carpet is installed in the right areas. Because it is difficult to estimate the length and circumstances of each job, some installers may not be able to give you an exact time of arrival. We suggest you be flexible and keep in touch with your retailer/installer.

Your safety, first and last.
Your installers will use a variety of tools and techniques that can make the work area hazardous. Please make sure that your children and pets are kept out of the work area on installation day.

The walk-thru is your final step.
We recommend that, prior to the completion of the installation, you walk thru the job with the chief installer. This will give you the opportunity to ask questions and be clear on any final details.

What to do After Installation

Give yourself breathing room.
If you are sensitive to odors, good ventilation should be established. Some of the chemicals used in the construction of carpet, as well as the adhesives or hot melt seaming tapes, can have an odor for as long as 48 to 72 hours after installation. So be prepared to provide the room with adequate ventilation.

Solving after-installation problems.
Shedding is a natural part of a new carpet. Frequent vacuuming for the first few days should remove any loose fibers from the carpet’s surface. Sprouting refers to small tufts or loops of carpet that become visible after the installation. Use a small pair of scissors to carefully trim the loose fibers flush with the surface of the carpet. Finally, if wrinkles or ripples appear in the carpet, it may be necessary to re-stretch the carpet. We recommend contacting your retailer to have this done professionally.

Prepare today for tomorrow.
When it comes to your carpet installation, we want you to be as well prepared as possible. It will make installation day easier on you and your home and provide you with an enjoyable floor covering experience for years to come.