Someone once said, “Preparation is everything”. It’s true and applies to most things in life. It does to carpeting, as well.
This month we’ve compiled some DOs and DON’Ts – and even some NEVER EVERs – if you’re adding carpeting to your home. Let’s get right to it.
Preparation truly is everything
You can easily waste hundreds – even thousands – of dollars on carpeting if it’s the wrong type for your needs or poorly installed.
DO take the time to think through and discuss the following:
- Where and when will you install it?
- What kind of wear and tear will it endure?
- How long do you plan to keep it?
- How much can you reasonably afford to spend on it?
- How much carpeting will you need and where will you shop for it?
Some considerations: Is your carpeting going into a child’s room or playroom? If so, you may plan on changing it out within ten years with the expectation that it will develop stains or simply wear out from kids and toys. In addition, the design may be more child-oriented now and you may plan to make it more teenager/adult friendly down the road.
If you plan to install it in your formal living room which doesn’t see much activity, consider something that you will enjoy seeing for possibly a couple of decades. Do you really want a white carpet with a long-haired black cat? What about the fade-resistant properties of the carpet you choose if you plan to have it in your sunroom? Stain resistance should be a priority when planning to install carpeting in your dining room.
There are so many things to consider including low maintenance and practicality, both of which should be near the top of the list.
As far as when, you may be tempted to have it installed as soon as you’re able financially. But consider a couple of things first. VOCs (volatile organic compounds) will be released into your home during the first 2-3 days following installation of new carpeting. Simply put, gases will be emitted from the new flooring. Wool, however, may be a better choice if this is of concern to you. However, even with the release of the VOCs, you can protect your and your pets’ health by opening windows or simply being absent from your home as much as possible during those initial few days following installation. You may not want to open windows all over the house in January or take a long weekend to visit others so schedule thoughtfully.
Another time consideration – there may be a few days needed afterward to touch up trim paint, replace furnishings or even just to have debris at the curb removed. If you throw a party the very next day, you may wish you had planned for these additional days to finish the details.
DO figure out your budget ahead of time. If you determine your budget before the shopping trips begin, you’ll avoid being tempted with luxury carpeting you can’t afford.
Take accurate measurements of the room you plan to carpet. Determining how much carpet you will actually lay down is not quite as simple as taking measurements and doing a quick math formula. DON’T bring the quantity you think you’ll need without the exact room dimensions. Instead, bring the room measurements to the flooring specialist and allow her or him to figure the quantity needed.
Are They Scraps? Or a Goldmine?
DON’T throw away those remnant pieces and scraps! Instead, have a few extra matching small throw rugs made from the remnants of the carpet you choose. After all, you will have paid for them. If you have the edges of these smaller pieces bound, you’ll end up with some rugs you can place leading into the house from the garage or screened porch. I have one made from quality carpeting that’s lasted me 20 years already and still looks terrific. You may also want to think about instituting a no-shoes-in-the-house policy for family members to help keep your new carpets clean.
Keep some carpeting scraps handy for emergency repairs. If a family member accidentally drops a hot iron on the carpet and it leaves an ugly scar, you’ll be grateful for the extra scraps that you may be able to retrofit into that spot.
DO spend time educating yourself as to the various types of carpeting out there. This, again, requires some thought about your lifestyle. I choose to have shag carpeting as a runner through my laundry room. This room connects the garage to the house and is the main entryway for family and even friends. I love the shag here because it catches and hides dirt from shoes until the next vacuuming. I also choose to use it in our TV room. This room rug sees a lot of popcorn crumbs, among other snack bits. Because of the multiple-colored and longer length fibers inherent to shag carpeting, it hides the mess well between vacuumings and is a good choice in both these areas of my own home.
DON’T Ruin a Great Carpet with a Poor Installation
DO your research as to who will install. Your choice may be as simple as having the professional at the location where you made your purchase install it. DON’T have just anyone do it unless they have proven experience laying carpet. The last thing you want is loose carpet running up and down your staircase or frayed edges coming up beneath the molding. Also check your warranty carefully; some require professional installation to validate it.
Call Mike at D4 Construction in Kamloops at 250-572-4812 today if you want a professional installation. He and his team can do the job for you.
DO learn about the padding that goes beneath your carpeting. It provides the foundation for it, and there are vast differences among them. If you’re a home with pets or located near water where your home may be exposed to a higher level of moisture, look into the padding that will best suit your lifestyle and climate. There is a wealth of information online about these issues but consult your local flooring professional since they will have lots of experience with padding.
So now it’s installation day – hooray! Before your new carpet arrives, be sure to DO the following:
- Vacuum your existing rug or carpet very well. If you don’t, a lot of dust will be released into the air as it’s pulled up.
- DO remove all furniture from the room prior to the arrival of the installation team if possible. They may or may not be allowed to disconnect your electronics, move furniture or even remove the scraps and debris afterward. Have a clear discussion of expectations both before and after your carpet arrives.
- If your carpeting will rise higher from the floor than what you had there previously, it may even affect the entry door and closet doors in that room. Discuss these things ahead of time to avoid any unpleasant surprises when the job is done.
Immediately after installation, with a clean vacuum bag in place, DO thoroughly vacuum the floor to remove all the installation dust and small debris that may have fallen within the fibers. Following that, DO use a quality vacuum to maintain your investment in carpeting. You may even want to factor that cost into your initial carpeting budget. Quality carpeting needs to be cleaned and maintained regularly to always look its best and last its longest.
… And a Couple of Never-Evers
NEVER EVER place an area rug over your wall-to-wall carpeting. Not only is a bad look in general, it will most likely ruin the area of carpeting beneath the rug. Area rugs are meant for hard surface flooring.
NEVER EVER make a carpeting purchase without seeing a sample of it in your own home in the light that comes into your own house. Bringing a sample home can mean the difference between a happy experience and a dreadful one in which money is wasted and you’re unhappy with the results. Obviously, once carpet is cut to your specifications, it cannot be returned.
One final DO – Please send us your before and after pictures. We’d love to post some online, too. Remember, if you need help in determining how much you’ll need or having the carpeting installed by a professional, be sure to call Mike at D4. He and his team are ready and willing to partner with you in upgrading your home with some new carpet. Why not call Mike of D4 Construction today at 250-572-4812?
Author: Tiiu Garrett