DIY carpet stretching – Do you really need to hire a professional?
Steve has created a number of carpet repair videos, including some about carpet stretching, so feel free to review the three carpet repair videos on this page. Our carpet stretching prices are competetive and fair, but we understand that many homeowners have little money to spare. We offer this information about DIY carpet repair so that you can get an idea of the tools you need to eliminate the ripples, bulges, and wrinkles that make carpet unsightly and dangerous.
Remember, you can get a free estimate just by picking up the phone and giving us a call at 800-656-9862, so before you start moving the furniture, why not find out how affordable a professional carpet repair can be?
Stretching Carpet – The Basics
Carpet stretching is necessary when wrinkles, bulges, or waves form in carpet. Carpets may become loose for a variety of reasons including heavy traffic, cleaning, humidity, dragging furniture across the floor, or poor original installation. When done right, carpet stretching maintains the shape of the carpet.
Most of the time, it’s only necessary to stretch a carpet in one direction to fix the problem. Depending on the size and severity of the wrinkles, your carpet repair expert may use a variety of tools and techniques to fix the issue. Wrinkles, ripples, and bulges can be removed from any* carpeted room in your home, even long hallways.
* The only kind of carpet that is not always stretchable is carpet that has been glued down. Sometimes, and we mean sometimes, the glue can become less sticky and wrinkles can be removed but not always.
The kneeless carpet stretcher (kicker) is a handheld device that works well for smaller problems along carpet edges. This tool uses good, old-fashioned knee power to help finish off the work done by the power stretcher. The carpet power stretcher is an essential carpet stretching tool. If your carpet was installed with a carpet stretcher, it will eventually buckle. This tool is a large pole that can extend across the entire length of the room. It braces against a wall, and a lever pushes carpet toward the opposite end of the room, pulling it tight. We use a carpet power stretcher because it guarantees the carpet will not become rippled again at a later time. Most carpet wrinkling problems are the result of this tool not being used, or being misused.
Once the carpet is stretched, a Slotted Blade/Carpet Knife is used to trim excess material. This carpet is trimmed before the main section is reattached to the subfloor. Once your carpet stretching job is done, you won’t be able to notice that there was ever a problem. Stretched carpet dramatically improves the look of any room, and can save you thousands of dollars when compared to replacement. An Industrial carpet staple gun uses a narrow staple that fits between the carpet nap. For carpet stretching jobs, the carpet staple gun is used to reinforce the tack strip with necessary. If you’re attempting a DIY carpet stretching job, you will also need a Hammer and Awl for working with the tack strip.
Moving furniture before stretching your carpet
We recommend moving furniture before stretching the carpet in the room. We can provide you with useful information to make this happen, and can even offer assistance moving your furniture if you need it. Sometimes heavy items like a piano or large king-sized bed are a tremendous hassle to move, but we can usually stretch carpet underneath of heavy items, although it will cost more because it is time consuming. Fortunately, there is no risk in finding out whether your carpet can be stretched without moving your furniture, so call us today for more information. Call a carpet stretching expert for a free estimate and enjoy our 100% Unlimited Unconditional Lifetime Labor Guarantee Creative Carpet Repair does something no other carpet repair company even attempts to do. If you understand the value of reliable customer care, free estimates, and quality workmanship backed up by an unconditional labor guarantee, then give us a call.
How to stretch carpet
What You Really Need To Know About Carpet Stretching (Explained by a Pro)
Carpet Stretching Basics:
The “why” of carpet stretching is that it keeps the carpet in place, flat, and smooth against the floor, as it is intended to be. Carpet is always stretched tight during the first installation, to ensure that it covers the floor evenly and smoothly. However, carpets may need to be stretched during carpet repair if they later develop buckles and ripples, which can be caused by any of the following:
Poor installation – If your carpet is improperly installed (due to insufficient or nonexistent stretching, or improperly securing the carpet), it may need to be re-stretched as a carpet repair.
Heavy traffic – If your carpet gets heavy traffic beyond normal foot travel (such as walkers or wheelchairs, tricycles, etc.), it may eventually come loose, even if it was installed perfectly.
Moving heavy furniture – Sliding heavy furniture across your carpet can cause its layers to ripple and leave the carpet loose and buckled.
Wrong pairing of carpet with padding – Different types of carpet pile are meant to be used with specific types of carpet padding, so the carpet is properly secured and supported. The manufacturer’s guide or an experienced professional can help you ensure you have a proper match before your install your carpet; otherwise, you may deal with ripples later.
Delamination – This means the latex that keeps the carpet backing intact has deteriorating; the carpet may start to fall apart by losing fiber or rippling.
To Stretch, Or Not To Stretch:
Once your carpet starts to ripple, it’ll keep getting worse. Because carpet is intended to lay flat at all times. a small ripple not only puts more wear and tear on the carpet and causes it to move when you walk across it. That movement causes…you guessed it…more ripples. Soon your carpet will begin to look more like an ocean than a floor, and that’s a problem.
“Oh goodie,” we can hear you thinking. If you find yourself in this situation, don’t worry. You probably won’t need to replace the carpet. For the most part, stretching carpet will remove the buckles and return it to a flat, attractive floor covering.
Carpet stretching is a very common carpet repair task. Carpet stretching is simple in theory: it involves pulling up the edges of the carpet, re-stretching the carpet so it’s properly taut, trimming any excess that’s been created, and re-securing the carpet in its new place. But in practice, it’s a considerably involved process, involving unique tools and proper technique to accomplish a successful carpet stretch.
If you decide to attempt carpet stretching on your own, the following tools will be essential; if you don’t own them, most should be available to buy or rent, and aren’t too expensive. A professional carpet repair person will have all of these tools (and probably more) on hand; hiring out your carpet repair to a seasoned veteran is still more affordable than replacing it with new carpet, so whether you try it yourself or pay someone (Us, please!) to do it for you, these tools are cost-savers.
Slotted blade knife or carpet knife: This knife will play a role in almost every carpet repair job imaginable. When you stretch a carpet, the carpet knife allows you to remove spare carpet created around the edge after the carpet is stretched tight.
Power carpet stretcher: A carpet can’t be properly stretched without a power stretcher; there’s no way around this. If your carpet wasn’t installed using one, it’ll need to be repaired with one because it’s surely buckling! The power stretcher is a very long pole that braces against one wall and uses the force of a lever to stretch the carpet toward the opposite side of the room. That force is much, much stronger than any force a person can exert alone (or with the kicker, #3 on the list), so using it is non-negotiable. (It’s also one of the most expensive tools of the trade.)
Kicker/knee stretcher: A sort of mini version of the power carpet stretcher, the knee stretcher uses leg-power to help finish off, around the edges, the work that the power stretcher does.
Industrial carpet staple gun: This isn’t your grandparents’ staple gun (unless your grandparents repair carpet). Designed with a much narrower staple that fits between the carpet nap, a carpet staple gun is always a good tool to have at the ready. It’s not required in carpet stretching, but because the carpet gets so tight, the tack strip may need some assistance in assuring the carpet is without-a-doubt secure. The staple gun is that assistance.
Awl: An awl helps you detach carpet from the tack strip; it looks something like an ice pick. It’s simple and very helpful for what it does.
Hammer: Always a good idea. If you don’t have a hammer around, carpet stretching is probably not something you’re prepared to do.
Don’t Act Until You Have A Plan – The Basics Of Carpet Stretching:
If you set out to stretch your own carpet, make sure you’re up to the task. Do your homework before you touch anything. If you’re still not sure what you’re doing, it’s best to hire a pro. (Me!)
Below you’ll find a very simplified version of the basic steps of carpet stretching; it’s by no means the step-by-step guide. If you don’t know how to do this properly, I strongly advise that you hire a pro. If you do decide to go ahead, work slowly, use your head, and above all—be very careful.
Before carpet stretching can even begin, you need to know how tight it’s supposed to be. When a manufacturer makes carpet, they specify not only the type of padding that should be used with it, but how tight it should be stretched. For example, tufted carpet with a backing made of synthetic fiber shouldn’t be pulled as tight as a similar carpet with jute backing. Stretching carpet to the wrong tightness can damage the carpet.
If you have the tools and know how tight you need to stretch the carpet, then you’re ready to embark on the carpet stretching journey, as outlined below.
Click here to learn how to stretch your own carpet.