How to Pull Up Carpet

  • Transcript

    LESLIE: Next up, a call from Washington State where Charles is having hardwood floor problems.

    What kind of a hardwood floor problem are you having, Charles?

    CHARLES: Well, my floors are carpeted and they’re solid oak.

    TOM: OK. That’s good news.

    CHARLES: So I picked the floor up and had a guy come and look at it. I picked up about 4’x4′ carpet. And he run his hands through it and everything and he says, “Well, I can see about three or four nail heads.”

    TOM: Right.

    CHARLES: And he says he can’t do it because it could damage his equipment.

    TOM: You’re talking to the wrong guy. Here’s the good news. You have a beautiful hardwood floor. It’s been covered by carpet, which makes it a nice, fat dropcloth that’s probably been down there for 30 years. When you pull that carpet up, you’re going to find something called tackless and tackless is this spiky, naily strip that is used to hold the carpet down and that has to be …

    LESLIE: It’s on the edge by your walls.

    TOM: Yeah, exactly. That has to be taken out. And that’s going to leave some little nail holes in it that’ll have to be filled. But once that’s taken out, then you basically can go through the whole floor and find any other errant nails that are there and once the nails are out, then you can sand the floor.

    There’s two pieces of equipment that you can use to sand the floor. One is a belt sander, which is what the pros use. There’s another one called a U-Sand, which you could probably rent at a rental center that looks like four disk sanders in one machine with a big vacuum bag attached to it. That’s an easy one to use if you’re going to do it yourself. The U-Sand is one that a pro can use.

    As a matter of fact, in this month’s Do! Magazine there is a story that Leslie and I did about how to sand your hardwood floors, how to redo those floors, and you might want to take a look at that for some more tips.

    Charles, thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT, 888-666-3974. If you go to our website at, there are also some articles that I wrote there about how to refinish your hardwood floor.

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