Why Professional Carpet Installation Matters
When you buy a big roll of new carpet, it can be a bit of a sticker shock to realize that you’re going to have to pay someone to install it, too. After all, it’s just a big sheet! Take it home and cut it into a rectangle, then staple it to the floor, right? How hard can it be?
Turns out, there’s a lot more to it than that. Professional carpet installation can make the difference between a wrinkly carpet that wears out quickly and a smooth, taut carpet that lasts a decade or more. Want to know the difference that the pros can make? Read on!
There’s a lot more to carpet installation than just stapling a carpet to the plywood floor underneath. Installers have to measure the space, cut precisely, lay down the pad (and glue or staple it to the subfloor), install tack strips, stretch the carpet itself, and install it.
That’s not to mention all the prep that goes into installing carpet. Measuring a room is very precise work, accounting for every little notch and divot in baseboards, doorways, and closets. Installers have to make sure that the doors will clear the carpet and that furniture will fit properly.
To do all this, carpet installers need specialized tools. You’re not likely to have a power stretcher, seaming tape, seaming iron, knee kicker, tackless strips, rubber mallets, row separator, or any of the other very specific tools that are needed to install carpet, but the professionals will.
Handling, placing, and stretching big rolls of carpet or padding isn’t easy work — professional crews will almost always have at least two people on a job for that exact reason. If you try to install the carpet yourself — or enlist the help of someone who also doesn’t know what they’re doing — you might do more harm than good.
The Difference Professional Installation Can Make
Carpet that isn’t installed properly will look bad, feel worse, and wear out up to 50 percent faster than carpet that’s laid correctly in the first place.
One thing that you might not realize is that carpet has a “grain,” sometimes also called a “nap,” which refers to the direction that the fibers lie in. The nap affects the way the carpet looks (you’ve seen carpet that looks like a different color when you brush it back and forth with your hand), but it also has a bearing on how the carpet lasts.
If carpet installers can install it such that foot traffic “walks into the nap,” the carpet will hold up much longer. Stairs and hallways will need to be installed so that the nap runs along them, not across them. In most rooms, you’ll want the nap running away from the main entrance. Of course, these rules sometimes conflict, but in that case, you’ll want the judgement of an expert on your side.
Another important aspect of installing carpet is stretching. You might not think of carpet as stretchy, but like any fabric, the carpet backing has give to it. If the carpet is simply laid down and fixed in place, it’ll eventually loosen under the repeated stress of your feet and furniture, leading to visible wrinkles and loose spots.
Some carpet installers will use “knee kickers” to stretch the carpet before fixing it to the floor, but even these can be insufficient in large rooms. Proper installation should use power stretchers, which use a ratcheting system to maximize the tension on your carpet so that it doesn’t loosen or stretch.
Professional Installation from Sloane’s
When you buy carpet from Sloane’s, we’ll put you in touch with our extensive network of professional carpet installers. Each of the installers we work with has been in the business of high-end residential carpet for at least 10 years, all over the Denver area. In fact, they won’t even install carpet that isn’t from Sloane’s!
Buying carpet is a big decision — one you hope to have to make only once a decade or so. Don’t ruin your brand new carpet with a shoddy installation job. Call Sloane’s today!