When you’ve got a brand new carpet to install, you’ll want to get your old one up and out of there quickly. But removing carpet isn’t the easiest job in the world, especially when you’re trying to pry up an old, heavy carpet that’s attached to your floor with years of tacking and carpet staples to pry off. Luckily, there’s a way to get your carpet off the floor without causing tons of stress on your back or doing a messy job of it. If you’ve already had to pry up your carpet previously for a cleaning appointment at Rainier Chem-Dry, it won’t be quite as difficult to get your carpet up and moving. However, if it’s a rug that came with the home and has been attached to the floor for decades, you’ll need to arm yourself with a few tools and a few friends to help you do the best possible job. Ready to remove your carpet? Here’s how.
Get Your Tools Ready
Before you even attempt to pry your carpet up, you need to make sure you’re armed with the right tools for the job. Trying to get your old carpet off the floor and into the recycling bin won’t happen with just a pair of old scissors and a hammer. To remove your carpet without hurting yourself or putting undue pressure on your back, you’ll need to have a pair of pliers, some carpet shears or a strong knife, a pry bar, some duct tape, and some protective gear to keep yourself safe while performing the task. Bringing up your carpet is most likely going to cause a bit of dust and debris to start circulating in the air, and you want to make sure you’re protected from breathing in a mouthful of old sawdust. Once you’ve got everything you need to get going, you’ll be able to tackle your rug removal project with confidence.
Start By Removing the Edges
Before doing anything, start by prying up any tacking trips, carpet staples, or putty at the edges of your rug. This may take some time, depending on how long your carpet has been in one place and how many times you or a previous owner stretched the carpet. You’ll need to have your pair of pliers handy, as well as some gloves and your utility knife in the case of stubborn tacking that won’t come off easily. Remember to use extreme caution with this. If you can’t use your hands to loosen a corner of the rug, cut a small square out so that you can get some leverage, being sure to be very careful around the tacking strips. Before you start pulling with all your might, be mindful of your back and your positioning, since pulling with too much force while on your knees could end up causing a strain or muscle pull. Once you have all your edges loosened and removed, you can start folding the carpet into sections in the middle of the room.
Cut and Remove In Sections
Once your carpet is folded up into rectangular sections resting on top of one another, you can use your knife to cut the layers apart. Be sure to keep the layers long and narrow, so that you’ll be able to roll them more easily. Cut your rug into as many smaller sections as you need, being mindful of how heavy each section will be to carry down the stairs. Even if you end up cutting your rug into tons of smaller sections, it will be worth it to avoid having to carry a huge, unwieldy roll of carpet downstairs and out to the recycling bin or the back of your car. While cutting your sections, be very careful to cut along a straight line and to keep your hands away from the edge of the fold. Utility knives are strong instruments, and you never want to get your fingers too close, especially when you’re making a swift downward motion. When rolling up your carpet, use duct tape or string to secure your rolls for travel.
Roll and Dispose
Now that you have your rolls ready, you can start bringing them to their destination. If you’re planning on throwing out your carpet, be aware that many city garbage trucks will not take rolled up carpet placed in outside bins. You’ll most likely have to take your rug to the dump. If you’re planning on recycling your rug, look up resources in your area that will accept your old carpet. If your carpet is made of less easily recycled materials, you may not be able to turn it in. Either way, make sure you know all your options before simply chucking your old rug into the bin.