carpet removal

Most carpeted areas wear out over time. They stain and wear down, especially in high traffic areas like a living room or hallway, so it’s best to plan to replace it every five to ten years. But, removing old carpet doesn’t have to be a chore; with some planning, carpet removal can be an easy DIY! Save some money for your next carpet installation and remove the old carpet yourself with the tips below!

Before Removal

Before you start removing your old carpet, it’s important that you have some specific tools and equipment to help you along the way. Some things you may need are a carpet knife, pry bar, and a plier set. You may also need thick gloves to protect your hands from the abrasive carpet backing and a dust mask if you’re sensitive to dust.

After you get the necessary equipment, it’s essential to remove all of the furniture from the room and remove the doors that swing into the room, including bifold closet doors. Removing these will make the process a lot easier and faster for you. Another thing to do before ripping up the carpet is to figure out where you can throw out your old rug afterward. Some cities have carpet removal programs, while others just ask you to throw out the carpet in the trash. If the latter is true, you may want to invest in a junk removal service.

Pull, Cut & Roll

Pulling up carpet can be a relatively easy and quick job to do yourself. The removal process also depends on why you’re ripping out the rug in the first place. Are you installing new carpeting or switching over to hardwood floors? Depending on your answer, there are different steps to take after removing the carpet.

Starting at the corner of the room, either use your pry bar or pliers to detach the carpet from the tack strip that holds it in place against the walls. Continue to pull the carpet along the wall, removing all the tacks, and cut easy-to-handle strips along the back of the carpeting. Cutting from the back is a lot easier than from the front. Make sure to roll the carpet as you cut it for an easier removal process. Once you get to a transition area, where the carpet meets another section of carpet in doorways or a section of hardwood flooring, leave that part alone. Carpet installers are more equipped to handle those sections; they can separate the seams without damaging the carpet that’s staying in place.

If you’re getting new carpet installed after removing the old carpet, there’s no need to remove the padding underneath the rug. However, if you’re installing hardwood floors after, you should remove the padding. Cut the pad and roll it up into strips, just like the carpeting. On concrete floors the pad is glued in place, so large chunks of the padding will be left on the floor, you can use a floor scraper to remove those parts.


After removing the carpeting, it’s time to throw out the old carpet. If you’ve figured out where your hometown trashes carpeting, follow those guidelines to remove the carpeting from your home.