When you want to make changes to your flooring, installing carpet is one of the options to consider. The issue arises when you want to fit carpet in an established home. More specifically, furniture presents a challenge when you want to install carpet. Can you install the carpet in a room with furnishings in place? Let's find out!
The situation will depend on the carpet installers. In most cases, removing all furniture from the room would be ideal. But, some professionals are willing to compromise. As long as you remove the small items, they'll move around the furniture for you. However, this option will cost you more.
Of course, all situations are not the same. There might be a good reason why you can't move furniture yourself. And, if you don't want to pay extra to have installers move it for you, you might be wondering if they can work around it. Is this a good idea? We discuss these issues and more further ahead.
Why You Need To Move Furniture
Before we get to the specifics, we have to learn why professional installers recommend removing all furniture from the room. The primary reason installers need furniture out the way is stretching. Stretching is a necessary step in the installation process.
But why does this step require you to remove all the furniture? Let's go over the benefits of stretching carpet and how installers accomplish it.
Carpet stretching is a process that involves applying multi-direction tension. It allows the carpet to straighten and smooth out. Of course, the benefit this brings is an overall increase in visual appeal. No one likes a lumpy mess.
But, a well-maintained look isn't the only benefit of stretching. Another benefit is safety. A carpet with ripples and bumps doesn't only look unappealing - it's also a safety hazard for the elderly, children, and pets.
An example of this would be using an area rug. If you've owned one, you might have had problems keeping it straightened. At worst, you or someone else might have tripped over it. Apply this to a carpet that's supposed to fit the whole room - and we can see why stretching is important.
How Professionals Stretch Carpet
The first thing professional installers will do is install nail-tack strips around the perimeter of the room. It has sharp pins that will hold (or bite) into the carpet. This way, it keeps it in place.
Nail-tack strips will be used as a boundary for carpet padding. Once the padding is stapled to the ground, installers will begin to work on the carpet.
Stretching will begin with the use of a knee kicker. The head of the knee kicker will press down on the carpet to allow the nail-tack strip to bite into the pile and backing. This process will continue along the whole wall.
After this part is complete, installers will use a power stretcher. A power stretcher is a long tool. Its purpose is to stretch the carpet from one side of the room to the other.
The padded side will face towards the first wall. On the other side, professionals press the head's teeth into the carpet towards the second wall. After this procedure, they will run the knee kicker along to secure it on the other side.
The process continues until it's secured on all sides. If you'd like an idea of how this goes, here's a YouTube video demonstrating how to do the job:
As you can see, it's a process that will require a lot of space.
Remove Furniture or Leave It in Place?
Now we have an idea of why professionals require you to remove furniture in the first place. But what if we can't remove it ourselves? Whether it's because of disability or other reasons, is there a way to compromise?
Do Carpet Fitters Remove Furniture?
The first option we have is to leave the job for the professionals. So, it begs the question, will carpet fitters remove furniture for you?
As some forum users suggest, it will depend on the carpet fitters. Some have had the fortune to avoid moving any heavy furniture pieces. Other installers would only remove five pieces of furniture in the room - sometimes at no cost.
Others will have a strict policy. Meaning, you'll have to clear the room to allow them to do their job. If you must leave furniture in the room, here's how it will disrupt the workflow:
- They will still follow the steps outlined above. Instead of doing the whole process in one go, they'll start by securing one side.
- Then, when they begin the stretching process, they'll have to move furniture around.
- Once it's out of the way, they can stretch and secure the second wall.
- This process goes on for the remaining edges of the wall.
It might not seem like a significant hindrance. But, it will require more effort on the carpet fitters' side. Depending on how heavy the furniture is, they might charge more than usual.
What Can You Do?
Professionals will recommend you call in ahead of time and tell them their responsibilities. Ideally, there shouldn't be anything in the room when the carpet fitters install the carpet. But, if you give them an idea of what you're leaving in the room, they can find some way to work around the problem.
Some installers suggest telling them what can go where to avoid damages and time loss. Regarding furniture, there are a few types that they won't move. For example, pianos are often too heavy and valuable to risk moving around.
It's the same thought process for moving a water bed or a pool table. Installers don't want to be liable for damages to valuable items. Lastly, TVs are a touchy subject.
If there's a specific way it's plugged in, most carpet fitters won't make it their job to reconnect it. For guaranteed success, call your local flooring professionals and make a plan.
Do Carpet Fitters Take Away the Old Carpet?
Another issue that you might run into is disposing of old carpet. Will it be your job? Or can you rely on carpet fitters to do it for you?
Unfortunately, the answer to this question is also dependent on the professionals you hire. You can find large and small carpet companies that include carpet removal and disposal with installation.
If we look at Home Depot, we can see that you need a minimum purchase of $599 for them to remove and dispose of old flooring. This package includes moving furniture and installing carpet on stairs.
Other installers will include moving furniture, removing, and disposing of old flooring regardless of the price. Since we can't guarantee you will find success getting an all-in-one package, you might have to hire a different person to do the removal.
How Long Does Carpet Installation Take for One Room?
Many factors influence how long it will take to install carpet in a room. How quickly you or professionals can do the job depends on:
- Furniture removal
- Room size
- Removal of old flooring (DIY or included in the installation package)
- Crew size and efficiency
- The layout of the room
Depending on the company you hire to do the job, it can take as long as a whole day or as little as a few hours.
The layout of the room also factors into the timeframe because it will take time to adjust a uniquely shaped room. On the other hand, a square-shaped room with no odd-shaped walls or nooks will be easier to install carpet in.
Lastly, some crews will be more efficient than others. Some installers claim they can install 2500 square feet of carpet in eight hours with a three-man group. Others can take as long as five hours to install 250 square feet alone.
Can You Work on Other Room Projects Before Carpet Is Installed?
Before installing carpet, you might get the idea to work on other projects. In that case, it might make more sense to do some of the work yourself - like removing the carpet. You might find some areas that will need fixes before you make any new installations.
In some cases, you might even find areas that you need to sand down before installing new carpet. In the worst case, it might cost you extra to have the installer solve the issues for you. The old flooring can hide a myriad of problems. So, it's important to tackle them before heading to a carpet fitter.
There are many reasons why you wouldn't move furniture yourself. Whether it's because of disabilities or the weight is too heavy, you'll have to look around to see if an installer can work around the problem. Otherwise, it might be best to hire independent movers to move your furniture. We hope you found the information above helpful!
Before you go, there might be other projects you'll want to finish before installing carpet. For example, should you install baseboards or carpets first? If you'd like to learn more, check out our post - Should Carpet Or Baseboards Be Installed First?
Is there a gap near the baseboard and carpet? We can give you some ideas on how to fill it. To learn more, check out our post - How To Fill The Gap Between Carpet And Baseboard