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Indoor/ Outdoor Carpeting: How to Get Rid of It

  • Transcript

    LESLIE: Judy in Dekalb, Illinois has a question about carpeting. What can we do for you?

    JUDY: I have indoor/outdoor carpeting glued onto my concrete front porch

    TOM: Wow. Nothing harder to remove, Judy. (chuckles)

    JUDY: Well, I’m – that’s why I’m calling you. (Leslie chuckles)

    TOM: And you’re falling out of love with that beautiful indoor/outdoor carpet, huh?

    JUDY: Well, I just bought it with the house. (Tom and Leslie chuckle)

    TOM: Yeah, it’s tough. What you’re going to end up doing is, you know, pulling up as much of the old material as you can.

    JUDY: Sure.

    TOM: And then, if it’s fairly flat to the concrete so there are no chunks stuck on it, what I would do is I would resurface all of the concrete with either an epoxy paint or an epoxy patching compound, if you have any unevenness to it. And you can trowel that on and have sort of a stucco appearance when you’re all done and it’ll stick to whatever is underneath it, which is most important.

    LESLIE: (overlapping voices) Mm-hmm. I mean, if you’re trying to get rid of that adhesive, pretty much the only thing that’s going to work at this point is a solvent and some sort of scraping device that’s very, very durable on a long stick, to save your back. Because you need to put the solvent on that glue and let it really get to work on it to sort of break it down and then scrape it away. 

    I mean, it’s – you know, luckily yours is outdoors, so it’s not going to be too odorific, if you will, for you (Judy chuckles). I’ve worked on this type of stuff in a basement before for clients and it’s stinky and it’s back-breaking work but that’s the only solution if you want to get rid of it completely.

    JUDY: What about like a heat gun?

    TOM: Oh, that would even be stinkier.

    LESLIE: Yeah.

    JUDY: Well, I’m outside.

    TOM: Yeah. 

    LESLIE: Yeah, but the …

    TOM: No, I’m telling you, you’re going to end up breathing some of that stuff and God knows what’s in it.

    JUDY: (overlapping voices) OK.

    TOM: I wouldn’t do that at all, Judy.

    LESLIE: (overlapping voices) And you need the solvent to liquefy whatever that adhesive is and there’s – you know, it’s going to be trial and error unless you happen to know what that adhesive was. Sometimes, it’s an alcohol-based solvent and sometimes it’s a mineral spirits-based solvent; it really depends. So you’re going to have to mix and match and try some things. Of course, let the first one dry completely before you try another one.

    JUDY: (chuckling) Or try a different spot.

    LESLIE: Exactly.

    JUDY: Well, thanks. I didn’t think it was going to be fun …

    LESLIE: It’s no fun.

    JUDY: … and you certainly have concreted that opinion. (Tom, Leslie and Judy laugh) Well, thanks very much and I’ll give it a go as soon as spring comes.

    TOM: (overlapping voices) Alright, Judy. Let us know how you make out. Thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT. 

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