Carpets are among the most ubiquitous luxury symbols that one can find in homes today. Soft and comfortable, they give homes a sense of sophistication that can’t be done in any other way possible.
But does anyone realize how hard it is to install them? As a result, many people tend to hire professional crews to put up those rugs. After all, if you install your carpet wrong, all that money will go to waste.
Fortunately, it is now easy to install these things with the devices that are available on the internet nowadays, all without the expenses that are related to it! You’ll also get to know how and why the professionals do it!
What in the World Is a Carpet Fitter?
While a carpet fitter refers to the person (or team) who installs the carpets, it can also refer to three particular devices that make their installment easier.
The first one is a small, specialized knife called a carpet cutter. It allows for seamless and tidy carpet installation by making sure that the rug is cut up properly.
If the carpet isn’t cut up properly, the tendency is that the edges of the carpet don’t blend seamlessly with the layout of the room. In addition, the edges of the carpet fray, leading to much quicker wear and tear than expected. As such, carpet cutters play an important role in fitting carpets.
Usually, one should have three or more knives in order to be able to install the carpet properly. Otherwise, you would be shocked to see that your knife had become blunt…and you are unable to continue the installation anymore!
The second one is a device called a knee kicker. It is a device which has teeth or blunt spikes at the end of it. It is a tool, about 18 inches (46 centimeters) long that allows you to jam the carpet into the edges of the room by “kicking” it.
It is used to lay down carpets in both large and small areas. When you position the kicker, you push the teeth down into the carpet about an inch away from the wall so that it will fit properly onto the floor.
The knee kicker makes sure that the carpet stays where it should be. Needless to say, your carpet looks better when it is firmly installed in its proper place.
Finally, the third one is called a laying bolster. It allows you to fit the carpet into the space that is allotted for it, without distorting the carpet in any way whatsoever.
Just tuck it in at the edges where the rug touches the wall and watch as your carpet mixes us seamlessly with the rest of its surroundings!
Used together, these three devices make up for easier “do-it-yourself” installation of carpets at home and as such, fit the “carpet fitter” category.
Where Can I Find These Tools?
One can find these tools at do-it-yourself stores, as well as mainstream hardware chains. You can definitely find them on online providers such as eBay and Amazon.
They come in many types and brands, such as Kenley, Silverline, Delfin and a couple of others. You can definitely buy the carpet cutter, knee kicker and laying bolster online. Alternatively, you can support your local business by buying it from your friendly neighborhood hardware store.
You can buy these things separately or together in one package. Buying them in a set reduces the amount of packaging that you need to deal with. Less trash also means a greener way to do things!
In short, just buy the products that are most convenient for you to use. After all, you’re the one who’s going to install the carpet, right?
How Much Do They Cost?
All of the above devices are available on Amazon. Some of them, like the Dolphin Knife, cost only 18 USD. However, if you want to buy all of them at once, you should prepare to shell out 50 USD or so.
They’re generally not expensive for their cost. As a matter of fact, the most expensive set on Amazon is at 70 USD, which is basically spare change when you consider the cost of calling a professional carpet installation company!
In addition, they are quite durable, which means that they should be intact for a couple of years before you will feel the need to replace them. Knee kickers would last the longest, while carpet knives would only last as long as their sharpness allows them to do so.
Why Do I Have to Get These Devices?
Let’s be frank here, while it is true that you can relax and sit back as your carpet is installed by a company, you know that you could save more by fixing it yourself.
By installing it yourself, you will have the major advantage of installing your saving money, because the usual expenses of installation, labor and old carpet removal (if any) will be eliminated in the first place.
The only large costs on your end will be the carpet itself and any specialized tools that you might need in the process of doing it.
Also, now that you the timing of the job is entirely up to you. Instead of waiting for the installation timeframe most companies give you, you can begin the job whenever you wish and work at your own pace. You can install your carpet in a day, or just do it in installments if you don’t have the time to do so!
In short, the quality and the speed of the job is in your hands. If you’re worried about hiring a company only to find out later that they have done an awful job, then this is your chance to make your carpet look at its finest and show everyone that you don’t need those people after all!
In addition, you will definitely need these devices if you are to do a proper DIY job on your carpet. Carpeting is a delicate business, as you’ll find out later in this article. As such, you’ll need to have the proper tools to be able to it in the best way possible.
What Are the Cons of Getting These Tools?
It will take some time for you to learn how to use all of them properly. However, once you get used to it, you’ll feel the victory of being able to fix, fit, stretch, and install your carpet all by yourself! You’ll also earn additional cookie points for learning another skill set when it comes to home improvement!
However, if you are unable to install your carpet for any conceivable reason, you will need to get a professional carpet installer on the pronto.
What Is The Process of Getting a Carpet Fitter?
One thing to keep in mind is that contracting a carpet installation company that might not be as reputable as others could end up costing you more in the long run. Yes, the three-way dilemma of “cheap, fast and quality” that is prevalent in the graphics design sector also applies here.
Remember, using a professional carpet installing team under the carpet retailer’s guidance will mean that you are covered under the retailer’s warranty.
There is a chance that by installing the carpet yourself, you might void the warranty and not be covered should something go bad during the installation process. That means that if you do even a tiny mistake, it will probably cost you more in the long run to fix it.
As such, there are times when you should just abandon the idea of installing the carpet all by yourself and just rely on skilled, sure hands to do the job.
How Do You Know If Your Carpet Is Installed Properly?
Having a new carpet can be a costly investment and as such, it should give you years of enjoyment and comfort. Since most people don’t purchase carpets for their homes on a regular basis, it can be difficult to check whether the carpet has been installed well or not.
You’ll be relieved to learn there are certain things to look for in a carpet installation job. You’ll be able to tell if your carpet has been installed properly when you walk through the installation area after the job is complete.
Look for the placement of any seams that were necessary for your carpet installation. While seams are not necessarily invisible, they should be smooth, with the nap of the carpet running in the same direction on both pieces of carpet. Seam placement should run parallel to doorways, and be away from any source of traffic that can cause it to buckle.
Examine the carpet to ensure there are no wrinkles. A carpet that has been stretched properly will not have wrinkles or bumps but will lie smoothly over the entire floor, blending with the surroundings as if it was the skin of a living being. If you see an area that is wrinkled, do not sign off on the installation job, as the carpet needs to be restretched and put properly in its place.
Check the area of the room, making sure the carpet is tucked securely between the tack strips and the walls. Any loose threads should be trimmed and tucked in place before the job is considered well-done.
Inspect any doorways and other areas where the carpet meets another flooring material. These are called “transitions” and should be finished so that any difference in height is minimized and all edges are covered smoothly – once done correctly, you’ll have a carpeting job that you’ll be proud of in the years to come!
How Do You Know If My Carpet Is Badly Done?
Some things to look for in a poorly done installation include the following: frayed edges where the carpet meets the wall, seams that don’t match or are aligned improperly, or bumps and ridges in the carpet. Often, repairs on these types of mistakes are time-consuming and costly — all reasons to be careful when installing carpets on your own.
Even if the worst-case scenario occurs – for example, if you find huge ripples in your new carpet, the seams are showing, or the carpet is lifting away from the walls – you know you have some recourse against the contractor or retailer that installed it.
You should always get some sort of warranty when using a professional. You should have the guarantee that the job will be done right the first time, or you won’t have to pay for the repairs. While it can be frustrating if they have to come back to correct issues, at least you can breathe easy knowing that it will be fixed.
When a professional does it, it mostly comes with some type of warranty that will secure you against any incompetence on their side. This warranty will include that not only will the carpet fit properly and look correctly installed, but also that there also will not be any damage done to the floor or surrounding areas.
The best way to avoid mistakes is to make sure the carpet is put in place correctly the first time. Do you remember the knee-kicker? The carpet stretcher? The crazy-looking tool known as the tucker? These are all specialized tools and in the wrong hands could cause utter chaos! Well, not chaos, perhaps, but you could end up damaging your carpet permanently if you aren’t careful. However, under the guidance of professionals, these tools usually are used correctly and leave you stress-free.
What Should I Keep in Mind When Buying These Tools?
When buying carpet installation tools, make sure to take note of three things.
First, it should be made from durable materials and of a certain quality that will allow you to use the thing for a long period of time. You don’t want to buy the same thing again and again; after all, 50 dollars is still 50 dollars, no matter how shallow the dent it makes in your wallet.
Second, it should come with a clear manual and something that is not complicated for you to use. You are not a professional carpet installer; you would do well to use tried and tested tools that will allow you to install your carpet in the best and fastest way possible!
Last, make sure that you buy only what is necessary in order to be able to install your carpet properly. You don’t want to spend more money than you need. You already have spent a lot on your carpet, so you might just as well try to buy wisely.
Why Is It That You Need to Rely on Professional Installers at Times?
Do-it-yourself home projects are at their highest level of popularity nowadays. For interior enhancements that focus on cosmetic changes, like painting and wallpapering, DIY is fine for people with little to no experience.
However, when it comes to bigger projects, such as carpet installation, it is best to have a professional installing team do it for you. A carpet is an important part of your house.
It spreads over the entire floor or part of the floor and is seen and used by everyone, every day. It is best to ensure the process is done correctly so that you will be pleased with the outcome for years to come, both in aesthetic and practical terms.
After all, each time you install your carpet, you spend money, time and effort in order to do it. Thus, you might just as well do it properly once and enjoy the results for a long period of time.
What Are the Intricacies of Installing Carpets?
The carpet installation process is a bit more complicated and intricate than people realize at first. It is not just rolling out your carpet, putting it all together and going on your way.
There is the sizing of the carpet, as well as the tools needed to trim it down and fit it properly. You also have to consider the carpet flooring and the installation of that as well as attaching the carpet and the floor.
As mentioned earlier in the article, several specialty tools are needed to lay a carpet (at least three types, in fact). If you try to simply cut it with industrial strength scissors, the carpet will become ratted and stringy and most likely uneven, thus causing your more and more problems in the long run.
If the pieces are not connected and attached correctly, they can shift or come up when used, and as a result, may force you to re-install it all over again. This ensures that you’ll have to spend more so that you will be able to get it right the second time around.
What Are the Complications of Self-Installing a Carpet?
If you install a carpet yourself, there is no guarantee that no damage will be done and that it will be laid properly without tears or bubbles or any other imperfections.
If any type of damage occurs during the installation process when you do it, there will be added costs potentially exceeding what it would have been to have a professional do the job in the first place.
When you have a professional do your carpet installation, you can be sure that if there are any mistakes, it will be repaired by the professionals at no additional cost to you.
How Do the Professionals Do It?
Your carpet installation company usually take cares of the initial steps. They will send out somebody to measure your rooms and determine how to minimize waste in order to maximize your carpet and reduce the chance that you will have to buy it all over again.
They will also suggest a team that is located locally who will be familiar with your carpet and have the necessary experience to install it in your home.
It is important to speak with the installing team prior to the installation to determine exactly what they will be responsible for and to set a schedule for the work. The installation team will need to use your electricity to power their tools as well as an area to work.
What Do You Do To Make The Job Easier?
Most installers (or you and your friends, if you are doing a DIY job), will move your furniture as part of their installation; however, you will still need to move your small items like lamps, televisions, tables or any other fragile items before they arrive at your home.
If you have any larger and delicate items such as oversized furniture or appliances, you may need to arrange to have this moved by another company or with the help of your friends and family.
In this case, check with your installing team (or with a friend who is knowledgable with the process) first as they can tell you just what to expect in this process. Your overall goal is to move any items that could get broken while making your installer’s job as easy as possible. At the end of the day, this will speed up the installation process.
During installation, you also provide adequate ventilation by opening windows and doors, running an exhaust fan or operating large electric fans in order to drive away from the smell of the adhesives and chemicals that they use during installation.
What Else Happens During Carpet Fitting?
Once the work begins, the professional installment team (or in this case, you and yourself) will be responsible for removing and disposing of your old carpet, if you have any. If this is your first carpet, they will start as soon as they can.
At some point, you or your installer may need to remove your doors to complete the installation. If the new carpet is thicker, your doors will have to be trimmed before they can be reinstalled.
Most carpet installers do not perform carpentry so it will be your responsibility to either trim them yourself or hire a professional carpentry team to reinstall them. In other words, this part of the job is in your hands.
What Happens at the End of It All?
It may take 3 to 4 days for odors and volatile organic compounds from the carpet or adhesives to dissipate. As such, you would have to deal with them for some time.
Also, it’s normal for new carpet to shed; vacuum loose fibers. Use scissors to trim any “sprouting” loops or tufts. Use them carefully so that you don’t accidentally destroy your new carpet job.
Congratulations, you have just fitted a carpet. Whether you did it by yourself or with the help of a team, give yourself a pat on the back as your home is now officially cool and comfy!