Whether it’s red wine or black market, sooner or later, your carpet will suffer a stain no amount of scrubbing can erase. In these instances, the best way to move forward is to cut the stain out of your carpet and replace it with a patch. Instead of hiring a pro to do this, you can remove the stained piece of carpet and seamlessly replace it with a patch, all for about $20 or less. Here’s what you’ll need for this intermediate-level DIY project:
TOOLS & MATERIALS
- Utility or Carpet Knife
- Heavy Comb
- Carpenter’s Square
- Rolling Pin
- Patch Material
- Scrap of Plywood
- One-sided Carpet Tape
When taking on this DIY task, be sure to equip yourself with the proper safety gear. Throughout the video, we’ll alert you regarding when you should and should not use the safety gear.
Part the carpet fibers. An essential element of a successful patch is to match the weave with the surrounding carpet. The best way to do this is to part the fibers with a heavy comb, a process similar to parting hair. Do this at least two inches from the stain.
Cut out the stain. Using a carpenter’s square, make a cut in the part adjacent to the stain. Measure at least two inches above the stain and make a perpendicular cut. Part the nap and make another cut parallel to the first. Then, complete the cutout using the square. It doesn’t have to be exact. So, don’t worry about overcutting the corners a bit. Remove the carpet, leaving the padding in place.
Find a patch. A new piece of carpeting won’t work to make the patch, as both the weave and color are bound to be different. Instead, we recommend seeking out a hidden area to harvest a patch. Closets are your best bet. But, areas under large pieces of furniture, such as sofas and book cases, work well too. Using a carpet knife, cut out a patch about a third larger than the area you’re covering. If your carpet has a distinct print, texture, or pattern, cut a patch twice as large as needed. You’ll need wiggle room to match things up.
Match the nap. Lay the patch next to the area you’ve cut out of your carpet. Brush the patch with you hand. Then, do the same with the carpet until they look the same. Rotate the patch and continue to brush until you find the best orientation. Use this orientation to cut your patch piece.
Prepare the patch. Using a scrap piece of plywood as a cutting board, place the stained cut out over the patch piece. Make sure you match the original orientation of the patch before you make your cut.
Use the cut out as a template. Cut the patch so it will be one backer strand wider than the cut out. This will help give it a snug fit. Then, test fit the piece and trim if necessary.
Cut pieces of carpet tape. Rough cut pieces of carpet tape longer than needed. To adhere the patch, the tape should be halfway under the surrounding carpet and halfway under the patch. Trim the pieces and place them around the cut out.
Peel and place the tape. Have a friend help pull back the carpeting. Peel back a corner of the backing and slip it paper side up under the carpet. Center the piece and carefully remove the backing so the tape adheres to the underside of the carpeting. Work your way around the opening until all four pieces are in place.
Apply the patch. Push the fibers of the surrounding carpet back along one side so they’re out of the way. Starting at a corner, push the patch into the hole. Part and press, working around the patch until it’s in place. Then, press down firmly on all four sides to help it adhere.
Mesh the fibers. Work over the patch with a rolling pin. To help fully adhere the tape, assemble a stack of books on the patch to weigh it down overnight.
Trim. Use a heavy comb to mesh the fibers, and remove any stray fibers with a sharp pair of scissors. Your patch should be nearly invisible now.
Step back and admire your stain-free carpet.