Can feel tack strip as well as nails on stairs. What to do?

Discussion in 'Carpet Q&A' started by amely, Oct 2, 2014.

  1. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    I think if you pull the carpet away the tufting will pull the rows of fibers out and cause runs in the carpet, probably why their avoiding opening a can of worms. The backing and carpet are thinner, the tackstrip hasn't kept up with the changes as far as shorter pins.
  2. kwfloors

    kwfloors Fuzz on the brain Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    What I see there is a square step without a nose. When there is that kind of step, when you pad you pad over the edge and staple to the riser. That sometimes will create a ridge where the pad ends that shows sometimes. Also thinner carpet doesn't cover the paint line on the wall.
  3. Floored by Newman

    Floored by Newman Floored by Newman

    I see carpet is 1/4 turned other than that looks like a clean install. I find duct tape will cause unwanted sounds when walked on...
  4. amely

    amely Member

    The situation is that you can feel the edge of the tack strip. It's not the visual that's the problem (paint can cure that), it's the fact that you can feel where the tack strip ends, making the surface uneven.
  5. Elmer Fudd

    Elmer Fudd Administwative Asst. Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    From the picture it is a very inexpensive olefin berber of about 16oz.
    With the narrow steps, and probably cheap (thin 4lb.) cushion you are going to feel the strip. It won't make much difference what they do.

    If they offered a heavier carpet, GRAB that deal quickly and insist on an 8 lb. 7/16th cushion. it will certainly lessen what you are feeling.
  6. kwfloors

    kwfloors Fuzz on the brain Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    Yes, I bet it has a wimpy pad that gives too much under it. There are manufacturers guidelines for pad densities under particular carpets. I can't see anything wrong with the job in the pictures.
  7. Hanover Fist

    Hanover Fist Pro Member

    If you decide to tap the strip nails down, strike them just enough to bend the tips down, don't slam them back through the backing or they will loose their grip and you will end up with loose carpet.
    Also strike them down and toward the crease.
    On both the riser and the tread the mails should lean toward the crease - you don't want to lose that angle, or it will lose grip on the carpet.
    And the strip normally has two rows of pins - try knocking only the nearest row (the one you're most likely feeling) down, and try that out, before tapping down all of the pins
    Shy of changing out the carpet and pad, it's probably the only fix available to you.
    As Mike said, if that berber is stapled down, it'll probably run when pulled.
  8. kwfloors

    kwfloors Fuzz on the brain Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    That step isn't 1/4 turned, its running the right way.
  9. Mike Sliwinski

    Mike Sliwinski The Doctor Is In I Support TFP Senior Member

    An 8'' tread ? Wow, is this Betsy Ross's house in Phila. Pa. :D If I ran into this situation as an installer, I would have removed the existing tackless and installed the stairs staple method. (assuming the stairs are made of wood)

  10. amely

    amely Member

    Okay, so a different company has offered to pull up the current carpet, take out the tack strips, and then glue it down on the stairs. They said there's a possibility that pulling up the carpet might mess it up, though. This would only cost $300, as opposed to however much a carpet upgrade might cost from the original installers.

    The original installers say that the current pad is an 8 pound 1/4 inch pad, rebound. Everyone has said this is the thickest pad they can put under the current Berber. They have offered an allegedly thicker carpet (they don't tell you the width of the carpet -- i guess the salesmen just don't know). The pad that goes with that would be 4 pound 7/16th.

    What should I be asking about this new carpet? Should I say I'm not going to buy any carpet that doesn't come with 8 pound 7/16th pad? Should I insist on any other factor in the potential new carpet?
  11. kylenelson

    kylenelson You'll find me on the floor I Support TFP Senior Member

    It is HIGHLY doubtful that you will be able to pull off these steps without some yarn pulling through where the carpet is stapled. That being said, it may not be impossible. $300 sounds more than fair to do that though, just as long as you don't have the expectation that it will be every bit as good looking as it is now.
  12. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    1/4" pad is mighty thin, we've never put in less than 3/8" but it's been a while since we put in carpet. 7/16" is standard Berber pad, 8 lb is an upgrade.
    Nonetheless it has nothing to do with tackstrip nails protruding thru carpet. It's the thickness of backing, use to be, the backings are thinner/newer than back when.
    So now the backing and the pile height have to be higher than the tack with pressure applied to the surface of carpet thruout it's life.
    Kinda silly tackstrip manufacturers don't have a clue or care to change with the times.
  13. kwfloors

    kwfloors Fuzz on the brain Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    You can put 8lb pad under any carpet. 4lb is what fha grade was and not worth the time. There is 7/16 8lb rebond, its what we sell.
  14. kylenelson

    kylenelson You'll find me on the floor I Support TFP Senior Member

    We put 7/16 8lb under just about everything.
  15. amely

    amely Member

    It sounds like if I get an 8 pound 7/16th pad it *might* solve the problem of feeling the tack strips, or it might not, as the backing of the carpet may still be too thin, is that correct? Is there any way to ensure if I get new carpet I won't feel tack strip? Like insist on a backing or pile height for the carpet itself?
  16. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    The 8 lb will help your carpet, pad would be irrelevant to feeling tackstrip because it buts up to tackstrip.
    Guys here put binding tape or similar product on top of tack to reduce height of pins and reducing length of pins coming thru backing into the carpet pile.
  17. Mike Sliwinski

    Mike Sliwinski The Doctor Is In I Support TFP Senior Member

    Ask the repair guy, after removing the tackless, if he or she is comfortable installing 'double stick method.' That's when you glue a special pad to the tread, then glue the carpet to the pad and also to the concrete riser. .....Is this, indeed a concrete staircase ?

  18. amely

    amely Member

    I think there's some confusion about this -- I have two options.

    1. Keep carpet, remove tack strips. Carpet may be damaged.

    2. Keep tack strips, get new carpet. Since the biggest problem with the current tack strips is feeling the dip where the tack strip ends and the pad begins, I'm wondering if getting the 8 pound 7/16th pad will solve the problem, or if I need to worry about the thickness of the carpet itself, as well.

    Or do you think I should get new carpet and have the tack strips removed? I mean, i guess I could insist they just replace the current carpet with the one I have, but make sure to remove tack strips, too. So I guess that's option #3.
  19. Mike Sliwinski

    Mike Sliwinski The Doctor Is In I Support TFP Senior Member

    :confused: :confused: :D It happens, especially when I eat wheat :p

    The 'Feeling the dip where the tack strip ends and pad begins'
    WILL NEVER GO AWAY !...........The problem is the 8'' wide tread ! The normal stepping process, going up, places the foot appx. 4 finger widths away from the riser, or 3'' stay with me, that 3'' space keeps ' feeling the dip' between pad and tackless away from your foot ! and that's how this works on a normal 10'' to 11'' tread
    installed tackless method w/ no staples.

    Carpet installed with tackless looks much nicer with-out some visual disturbance from staples, but
    I and we installers can and will continue to use staple method. We can even install wood onto a concrete stair first and then staple into
    that ! Options are almost limitless, unfortunately !. I personally hate options in my life, because that means I need to make a choice, :eek: :)

    I did a mock up Amely! shortening my stairs by 2'' and boy O boy you would never think 2'' would mean so much.
    I understand your Issue, because who wants to feel that hard dip thing! when being a mountain goat ascending your Himalayan stair case w/ no repelling safety line. :p

    We want to help ! are the stairs wood or concrete ? we need this information before continuing.

  20. amely

    amely Member

    Not true -- my last carpet you couldn't feel the tack strip at all. I didn't even know what a tack strip was until they installed the new carpet. People are assuring me now that it's the fact that the new pad is 1/4 and it should be 7/16ths. I just want to make sure that's the case, and some are indicating that new carpets are just too thin in general.

    The stairs are likely wood.

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