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Laying Indoor Outdoor Carpet

Paying a professional to do your indoor carpet installation makes more sense for most people than doing a self-installation. Unless your installation is very basic or you are bent on saving the cost of the installation you should not do it yourself; however, if you choose to install your own carpet here are some tips to make your installation professional looking.

If you have indoor-outdoor carpet you probably won't need to install padding. Indoor pile carpet usually does require padding to be installed. You'll need to prepare the area that you wish to lay the carpet on prior to installation. The surface should be clean and smooth. You should sweep and vacuum the surfaces thoroughly as well as check the area for any protruding nails, screws, bumps or defects in the surface, etc. Smooth these blemishes out or repair anything that's broken (such as broken boards) prior to continuing with the installation.

When laying indoor-outdoor carpet you should aim to perform the installation on a day with a moderate temperature and a low level of humidity. Carpeting materials should be a moderate temperature when installing. You want the carpet to fit when it expands or contracts. Also, if it's too humid the adhesives used to fasten the carpet to the surface will not be nearly as effective as they should be.

In high traffic areas it's recommended that you glue down the carpet. You should also glue the carpet when it's in a fully exposed outdoor area. In most cases you can use a good quality double-sided tape to secure the carpet. Some indoor-outdoor carpets come in rolls but precut squares are easier to work with; you can also cut your own squares. Lay out your carpet squares beginning in the center and working your way out. Ideally you should have no less than half a tile around the perimeter. You should dry fit the tiles before gluing or taping things down.

Once you have the tile layout figured out and they all fit you can begin laying down tape or adhesive. Begin by placing a layer around the edge of the area and then create an X shape every foot over the entire surface. Start attaching the carpet squares at the center, press the tiles firmly into the adhesive and then move outwards.

If you are using rolls of carpet rather than tiles, roll the carpet across the area, cut to fit then roll back and apply the adhesive. At the wall you will need to cut your roll/tile to fit properly. Let the excess fold up at the wall then take a piece of chalk and mark the line where you need to cut. Once you are ready to cut use a sharp utility knife to cut the outside of the line you drew onto the carpet. Always cut the carpet to be slightly larger than the area that you wish to cover; you'll have some leeway if you're placing the carpet up under molding.

Once you have all of your carpet cut to the proper size and laid you can remove the backing from the tape or apply glue and then slide the carpet into place. Keep in mind the thread direction when laying the carpet so that you get a uniform look. If you don't keep this is mind you will end up with a checkerboard pattern.

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