HOW TO REMOVE CARPET & PREP FOR HARDWOOD FLOORS
Dude, knowing how to remove carpet (and all the layers under it) is not any joke. We learned that when we eventually tackled that task this weekend and lived to tell the narrative. Allow me to just tell you, advancement smells a whole lot better than old carpeting. Even when there’s a considerable amount of perspiration involved.
Once we bought this house we knew that the four bedrooms upstairs (together with the hallway) wanted new floors since the once-cream (now largely tan) wall to wall carpets were stained, threadbare, and sometimes even holey in some areas.
Happily, a few areas were loose we can peek under them throughout our very first walk-through to find out what we had been working with. Sadly, there was not any hardwood to be found under there, and we were greeted with a subfloor. But we’re so glad we made that discovery before purchasing (we definitely factored that expense into our conclusion ). And after we have over the despair of not needing old hardwoods below there to revive, we got excited about picking new flooring.
We believed a wide selection of things for some time (hardwoods, brand new wall to wall carpeting, bamboo, tile) and after a lot of thought ended right back at oak hardwoods, as it’s exactly what we had in our first house in addition to our current one (even in the bedrooms). We like that we can constantly throw down an area rug to snug things up (and because those can alter over time it feels a little more flexible than committing to a certain type/color of the wall to wall carpeting for a decade or two). Plus with a child and a dog we’ve only found wood floors to be simple to keep clean/wipe down/etc.
We also already have bamboo floors on the staircase that lead to the second level in addition to in the future office, dining room, and living room so we thought finding some in the same grain and finish would be a nice seamless this-has-always-been-here option. However, before we can bring into yummy new hardwoods to put in (at least that is the plan!) We were confronted with stripping off all the aforementioned nasty carpeting in all four bedrooms around and also the hallway… which turned out to be rather the job. Here is the way we got done.
It definitely was not delicate pulling, more like forceful yanking but together with John working on one corner and me in another, we could free up enough of it to start rolling it towards the opposite side of this room (we paused to take this photograph, but picture me standing alongside John rolling along together ). It’s definitely one of those four-hands-are-better-than-two tasks if possible.
Oh and wear gloves! And long sleeves if you are smart. We wised up after our forearms got raw from taking rolls of carpets down to the garage, where we are storing it all until we can figure out what to do with it (it’s too gross to contribute, so we may need to lease a Bagster or something to get rid of it). Update: Thank you for all the information on recycling carpets (which seems to affect your indoor room air quality as well), cutting them down for curbside pickup, and all the other cheaper/greener alternatives than just trashing them.
Room by room we replicated that process (and also down the hallway too ). Pry up the corner, yank yank yank, roll roll roll, and drag the baby down to the garage. In certain areas, there was so much carpeting that we cut in half with a box cutter before carrying it down to lighten our load. We then were left with this beautiful blue carpet padding underneath. Which was stapled and nailed down in about a thousand places per room (sadly that is not an exaggeration).
Just enjoy the carpeting, it could be yanked upward, but it left a ton of small claws and staples and tack strips all around the room after it was stripped from your area. All these are tack strips. They operate around the perimeter of a room and are thin little shim-like parts of wood with nails poking up through them (they catch the carpet pad and carpeting to maintain it in position ).
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