Sharp tack strips on carpet on brand new home

Discussion in 'Health & Safety Forum' started by danandlova1, Nov 30, 2012.

  1. danandlova1

    danandlova1 New Member

    Hello! I'm new here. We did a " walk-through" on our brand new house yesterday and we re scheduled to settle next Wednesday. We have carpet in the family room and hardwood in the kitchen. We stepped on painful tack strips where the carpet and hardwood meet. We also felt some on the stairs and by the walk-out basement door. Our Realtor and the builder's Rep keep saying its normal-and that he's just going to hammer the sharp strips down...Is that acceptable.

    Im very bothered by this-because I'm afraid hammering the strips down could not fix the real issue and could wear our carpet. I asked the builder if they can install a wood transition where carpet and hardwood meet and this is their reply:

    "We only use metal transition strips between vinyl and carpet. And only wood transitions between hardwood and ceramic. The transitions between carpet and tile is done correctly in your home with a ceramic threshold. The carpet and hardwood transitions are also done correctly with the carpet being tack stripped down along the finished hardwood edges.
    There may be an after market solution that you may be able to install after movein. Our flooring installers currently do not provide any other option. I will go through your home as promised and flatten any Sharp points in all those locations you have mentioned.

    Is this acceptable? Are they violating CR 105 standards?
  2. Daris Mulkin

    Daris Mulkin The One and Only Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    The pins in the tackstrips can be bent over but if the carpet has to be released for some reason it is now lock downed and maybe hard to do without damaging the carpet. There better way is to use a material to shim up the pins to where they aren't as long thus not sticking through the carpet.
    On the steps people usually don't step that far back on the step. Most traffic in on the front and nose. My guess is you ran your hand at the crotch and felt them. Or the installer possibly doesn't have the correct spacing.
    I believe the CRI says not to put tackless across doorways. I can't quote it for sure without doing a bunch of searching, but in the trainings I do we recommend not across doorways.
    Now against the hardwood. There are basically 3 options. Tackless, turn the edge under, or a transition strip which is usually ugly. Most of us put tackstrip down.

    Carpet must be builder grade and very thin.

  3. ortiz34

    ortiz34 2nd generation Senior Member

    It is fixable though by banging the pins down carefully
  4. Omnipotent

    Omnipotent Flying Dutchman

    Commercial carpet is supposed to be glued down. If you can feel the pins through the carpet it shouldn't be stretched in. You chose the wrong carpet. They should have warned you beforehand.
    I'm sorry, you didn't chose the carpet yourself.
  5. Jim McClain

    Jim McClain Owner/Founder Administrator

    As Daris first mentioned, the pins can be prevented from poking through a thinner carpet by covering them before the carpet is installed. Strips of 15# felt, scraps of thin sheet vinyl, even layers of duct tape can be used. Pressed over the pins tightly, this effectively reduces the length of the pins and still allows them to penetrate the backing of the carpet to hold the stretch, without sticking so far through the carpet that it bloodies your feet.

    Ask the flooring company to come back to pull the carpet away from those edges and do that for you. Pounding the pins down is not a good idea, especially if you might be calling them back at some point to install new carpet. A little strip of roofing felt will make their job easier - fewer complaints and more repeat business.

    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. Darren Ramey

    Darren Ramey Charter Member

    Yes it is better to do something about the pin length before the carpet is stretched in, but on a builder grade plush, which is what I'm assuming was used, tapping the pins down after the fact is no big deal. Worst case is the installer that has to pull it up eventually has to replace the piece of strip in the doorway. In fact, pulling the carpet up to put something on top of the pins might even do more damage.

    The CRI-105 actually says not to put tack strip across any doorway. I'm going to go out on a limb and say 99% of even good installers violate that rule every day. It just looks better than ugly transitions or staple dimples from turning and tacking.
  7. kylenelson

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

    Very true.

    I don't believe your flooring installers did anything wrong with the way they did the carpet. Like others have said, there must not be a lot of yarn on your carpet if you are feeling the pins everywhere. In which case, I say pound the nails down and let it be.
  8. Mike Sliwinski

    Mike Sliwinski The Doctor Is In I Support TFP Senior Member

    Congratulations on the new home :yesss:

    I understand the concern, sharp tack strips :eek: It's kinda funny we call it
    ' Tackless' ....ouch :eek:.........get the bandaids right quick :eek:

    Post some pictures, this way we can advise with more detail.

    Unfortunately, the builder will only do what he said and if the hammer doesn't work , he'll get a bigger one :eek: :eek: That's the way it is, Sorry !

    Is it Acceptable ? ..............No !! Will your hand be forced to Accept it ? ............ Yes ! Most Likely it will :( :( ........But have no Fear !
    The Floor Pro's are Here !!! and we'll lend a helping hand.

    Every carpet installer has gone through this experience and your
    installer is going through it Now !.......He or she needs proper guidance, are you up to the challenge ? I suggest writing a letter to the installer,because they are the last line of defense and this problem could have been avoided
    with very little effort.

    I became Certified through the CFI organization many years ago and I truly believe in my trade and the Phrase " If It's To Be, Then It's Up To Me"
    However, my mind set wasn't always there...........It needed to be awakened
    and for me ! it came from YOU !! 'The Customer' because after all
    they are Truely The Last Line of Defense.

    Like Cesare Melone (sp) says........Stay Calm and be Assertive, no matter
    what happens with them, you have Us and the end result will eventually yeild
    the proper result.

    PS> I would pull back the carpet, apply seam tape over the tack pins, and
    re-install the carpet. I personally don't like the hammer down the pin
    method. Or replace the tackless with "D" pin Tackless, this is a more specialized product with smaller length pins for shorter nap carpets.

    How thick is the oak ? and does the height of the carpet line up for a smooth transition ? If not ,we may have another procedure for you to make it acceptable.

  9. kwfloors

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

    Now remember, the installer only gets $3 a yard to install it.
  10. Darren Ramey

    Darren Ramey Charter Member

    You or I might be able to fix it that way, but lets face it, the guy that installed it is going to be upset that he got called back on a job he got paid $2-$3 a yard on and isn't going to take the proper care to break the stretcher out and gently pull the carpet off the existing strip. He's going to grab it and yank. That will shred a builder grade piece.

    I have never seen anything other than standard pin strip at any supplier, nor could I find any on the internet a few years back when I was looking, and asking here, I was advised to call tacks strip manifacturers. I'm not saying it doesn't exist, but damn, it may as well not.
  11. Mike Sliwinski

    Mike Sliwinski The Doctor Is In I Support TFP Senior Member

    I was that installer !! and in many ways, I still am :eek:......... I'm not advocating to give away service. By all means express yourself, let them know what's going on and why you did what needed to be done. * What Needed to be Done * Because ! with-out quality service, you could eventually find yourself stuck .....Stuck in 'a One Size Fits All'
    World ..........

    It seems to me, through observation over the years, that most customers want Options and are willing to pay for them. Speak up, educate the builder,
    The contractor, the sales person...... everybody and anybody.Tell them, would you want your child to step on those pins ? because I offer an optional
    service that almost completely eliminates that danger. :cool:

    Also compensation come in different forms, other than " The Green stuff " I used new construction track work as schooling to sharpen skills and methods, knowing that in the long run it would pay.

    I understand, believe me, I was that short-sighted installer, who said
    " How Dare they call us back for an adjustment when I'm getting paid so
    little" :mad:

    When really !! :D I could have said..........I wonder ? .......Was there something we could have done ??......after all, I Need Happy Customers and the complaint is Valid !!

    Sometimes Money needs not be the monkey wrench for Progress

  12. Mike Sliwinski

    Mike Sliwinski The Doctor Is In I Support TFP Senior Member

    ------------------I understand this one Big Time ! ...... you and I need to
    accept the conditions the way they are.

    Let me explain .......I'm still trying to control my supplier by having an expectation that It's His Job ! to order and stock One pallet of specialty tackless.

    I'm emotionally stuck ! and progress will never ever ever happen in that state of Mind. If I recognize the emotion, feel it once, really hard ! and then move on with analytical thought, I would make progress. It's my constant Expectation that keeps feeding the emotion / feelings.

    I can't wait for the day that I choose to get over it........and Accept the situation, Give acceptance to the Manufacturers and the Suppliers......
    Because ! " If It's to be, then it's up to Me "........ that's when I'll come up with a solution and gain Progress.

  13. Ed

    Ed Charter Member

    When I find a need to tap down the tackstrip pins in a doorway I try to tap them down gently and carefully. I don't want them mashed flat and leaving marks. I tap down only enough to where I cannot feel the pins.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  14. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    Don't step there anymore, your brain will conveniently remind you time and again when you forget, step over it especially in the middle of the night.

    Here's the deal, everything's getting more expensive, profits shrinking, competition is fierce. All manufacturers are trying to reduce material, it's just gonna get thrown out in the future, make it thinner, it's hard to hook on pins when power stretching and kicking if they were any smaller. I could go on and on

    Here's a solution, I haven't bought lower pins in about 15 years, though I don't do much carpet, way more hardwood and ceramic. The previous replys have offered good suggestions, let the install company know your concerns and depending which you choose and they agree to offer to pay for their time and material.

    The builders statements are correct, until its addressed from the manufacturers the situation will not be solved and the norm to correct it is to blunt the tips with a hammer but not trapping the backing under the nail against the wood strip.

    Should your carpet need restretched in the future and the nails were tapped over and not locked in it should be ok.

    Not only is the backing thin the pile is also, just recently customer bought two different grades carpet in exclusive neighborhood, almost doubled the yarn weight but the backing was the same cheap backing, both should increase in quality. Customer doesn't have a clue, it's not something one would study or be concerned with.
  15. Jim McClain

    Jim McClain Owner/Founder Administrator

    Have you guys seen how they make tackless these days? Go ahead, lay a piece down and tap on them pins and see what happens. It destroys the thin layers of wood around the pins. The pins are no longer stable. And if it's done with your average actionbac carpet backings over them, it pretty much destroys the cheap-ass backing too.

    If you are an independent installer who charges only 2 or 3 bucks a yard to install, that's your fault, not the home owner's. You get call-backs when you make a mistake, no matter what you charge. If you don't have or can't get the right tackless for the carpet you're installing, then you just make the necessary adjustments where they're needed.

    Yanking a couple strips of builders felt over the pins in a doorway before the pad goes down is pretty damn simple and cheap. Quickly trim off the excess and install your pad (or leave it on, if it's a wood floor), then when you stretch the carpet into that doorway, your customer won't get bloody walking around barefoot, just like you do in your home sometimes.

    [​IMG]Low pay is not an excuse for low quality. Who's business is it? Who's name is on the job when you're done? Who's hoping to get referrals so you can up your value as a flooring professional? I'm pretty sure, those 2-3.00psy carpet installers aren't paying much attention to what we're saying here. They're thinking work is done on the computer and their time is better spent on facebook, lookin' at porn or gambling, not googling how to make money transitioning from carpet to hardwood in doorways.


    • Like Like x 1
  16. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    Ill be right back going to tap some pins
  17. Ed

    Ed Charter Member

    If it's a single door,regular foot traffic will probably bend the tacks over.
  18. Barry Carlton

    Barry Carlton I Support TFP Senior Member Published

    I am curious, if in fact the labor is actually 2-3 dollars a yard, how many law suits can they afford for cut feet?
    • Appreciation Appreciation x 1
  19. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    Tips rounded over, angle reduced to 45• degrees instead of what looks to be about 70 degree, (never really looked at exact angle, thanks Jim) integrity of wood(not to my standards) doesn't seem to be compromised.

    I do notice from power stretching some cheap backing a that don't stretch to easy will pull the nails back.

    This is mid grade quality tackstrip. Maximus extra wide width blah blah blah, not even as good as standard back in the day when Americans made their own stuff
  20. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    That reminds me Barry, my tetanus shot is due, wonder if my doctor who I haven't seen in about twelve years still has my record or will even see me?

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.