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We show you how to remove carpet from your home. Sometimes this can reduce the cost of replacing old carpeting with either new carpeting, or other flooring materials such as wood, composite, or tile. If you are using a contractor to replace the flooring, the removal of the old carpet may reduce the cost of the installation. Use this as a negotiating point when discussing prices.

The tack strips will need to be removed if they are damaged or if the plan calls for replacing flooring with a non-carpet material. Be aware that tack strips are very sharp and can easily cause cuts or puncture wounds. That’s why you will need to wear heavy work gloves and be careful when working near tack strips.

Tools & Materials Needed

  • Utility knife, also known as a drywall cutting knife. Do not use a kitchen knife or a pocket knife.
  • Duct tape.
  • Heavy duty work gloves.
  • Flat pry bar for removing tack strips.
  • Pliers for removing staples.
  • Knee pads.

Steps To Remove Carpet

  1. Cut a square out to the corner of the carpeting as shown in the video. This makes it much easier to grab hold of the remaining carpet.
  2. Pull upwards when removing the carpeting from the tack strips. Do not kneel or step on the tack strips.
  3. Cut the carpeting into strips narrow enough to make handling easy. Two foot to three foot wide strips are easy for most people to handle. Roll up the strips and wrap duct tape completely around the carpet. Duct tape may not stick very well to the course backing (called jute) used with carpeting, so make sure to wrap the tape completely around until it overlays the starting point by six inches or more.
  4. Remove the padding. Packed will be tacked down to wooden subfloors. Be careful when handling padding with staples. Some staples will come up with the padding, while others will remain embedded in the floor. Padding is not typically glued to concrete subfloors, but in some cases it may be. If the padding is glued, use a scraper to remove the glue as you lift the padding.
  5. Cut the padding into strips, as you did with the carpeting. Secure with duct tape.
  6. Remove any damaged tack strips, or remove them all if you plan to install a different type of flooring.You do not need to use a monster-size pry bar, as is seen in the video. A flat 12 to 14 inch pry bar should work just as well. Be very careful if the tack strips are attached to concrete.
  7. Clean up all the remaining debris.

In most geographic areas, carpeting can be disposed of in the regular trash pickup. if in doubt, call your local city hall for disposal instructions.

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