06:42AM | 08/04/01
Member Since: 08/03/01
1 lifetime posts
My wife and I are replacing the wall to wall carpeting in our family room. The old carpeting and base moulding was not professionally installed at looked terrible.

My question is :

Should you install the base moulding first and then the carpet? OR Should the carpeting be installed first and then the base moulding?


10:47AM | 08/04/01
Member Since: 09/01/00
312 lifetime posts
Remove the base and lay the new carpet.Then replace the base.Since there may be a place or two where the carpet is just short of the wall,the base covers those flaws.

Jay J

06:04PM | 08/04/01
Member Since: 10/26/00
782 lifetime posts
Hi wstei,

I'm not disagreeing w/Matches but I'd like to offer an alternative.

Depending on the COMBINED thickness of the padding and carpeting, you can install it BEFORE the carpet installers come. Here's what you do.

In my home, after ripping out the old carpeting and padding, I had just a subfloor. I asked the carpet Retailer how 'high' off the floor should I install the new molding. He said 1/2".

So I bought my new molding, cut it to fit the room, stained (or prime and paint), and polyurethaned it. Then, I cut myself about 6 blocks of wood that were 1/2" in thickness. I set them along the wall for the length of each piece of molding, and PRE-Drilled them, then nailed them (or you can screw them w/finish screws) to the studs (or base-plate.) I counter-sunk the nails, then mixed some plain wood putty w/some of the stain, and filled the holes. ALL this BEFORE the installers came.

But a word of caution - Be SURE you tell the Retailer that you took pictures of you trim, and if the installers nick-the-heck out of your new trim where it's ruined, they're paying. It can happen (and I'm not saying it will.) There's a tool called a Tuck Tool that the installer uses to 'tuck' the carpeting at the edges. If they're not careful, you'll see these very fine, 1/2" 'vertical lines' from their tuck job. I learned the hard way. It wasn't until after our Family Room was done that I noticed it. You didn't really notice it until you got kinda close. From 6' away, no problem, BUT if you got within 6' and looked hard enough, you could see it. I didn't press the Retailer to replace the trim. Fortunately, the scraping lines were only through the finish and NOT the stain / wood itself. THAT, you could see easily. IF you could see the lines beyond 6', then you KNOW they were abusive. No one to this day has 'mentioned' the lines because unless you're looking for them AND within 6', you don't see them. What I ended up doing is asking for a different crew. You see, I left Cokes and Pepsi and 7-UP for the guy, PLUS I gave the 2 of them a $5 tip (for 4 yours of work) and I STILL got screwed!!! The 2nd crew did the DR, LR, stairs, 2nd floor hallway, and 4 bedrooms. THEY appreciated the $15 tip (since they had so much ahead of them to do), and the free 'drinks'. Yes, I did tip them BEFORE the job and I DID ask them to be careful w/the trim. THAT is what P'd me off.

I've talked enough. Oh, the reason I did the trim before the carpet was layed was because the subfloor is very FLAT, and the trim easily followed the 'contour' of the floor. I was afraid that as soft as carpet is, I might actually install the new trim in a 'wave' type of look! (I was kinda paranoid.) BUT, the decision is yours. If I were you (and w/what you now know to SAY and DO), I'd install it before hand.

My best to ya and hope this helps.

Jay J -Moderator


04:14AM | 08/06/01
Member Since: 03/13/00
1675 lifetime posts
I believe if you're going to paint the moulding it's best to do that before installing it, and better to install the molding before the carpet. After installing the molding, you'll need to touch up the paint and you don't want to get paint on the carpet new. Better to have it done and dry first.


04:39PM | 11/17/01
Member Since: 11/16/01
301 lifetime posts
Install your base molding 1/4" from the floor. The carpet will fit tighter and you won't have gaps. Also, if the installers ruin the molding, you can hold them responsible. A professional installer will not do damage.
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