Tacks are hurting my children

Discussion in 'Carpet Q&A' started by Carla, Jun 6, 2018.

  1. Carla

    Carla Member

    I have Shaw Color flair - Dolphin 00501 carpet installed in bedrooms, stairs to basement and basement in my new home.

    They used tack strips across doorways and and my kids feet and legs and hands are being torn apart by the tacks. They hammered down the tacks at the top of my stairs. The carpet is pulling away from walls in almost every room as well.

    I talked to the owner of the Carpet and Tile company and he said the tack strips will stay there and he can stretch it and staple it down at the tack strip to stay in place.

    I talked to them about the CRI 105 11.1 "Avoid installing tack-strips across door openings and/or sills. Cut tack-strips to follow the contour of door casings and other irregularly shaped abutments. · Do not staple carpet to tack-strips."

    He said the Industry standards are just a guideline and while I might complain about the tacks, everyone else is just dealing with it as he has been doing this for 20+ years and this is how it is done and he will not change it.

    He also said he could hammer down the tacks at the doorways but then it would void the warranty on my carpet with him...

    From there I asked about transition molding which is CRI 105 - 5.4 "Transitions to Other Surfaces Where carpet transitions to other floor coverings, the carpet edges are required to be protected or covered with appropriate transition moldings." The owner of the carpet and tile company as well as the person representing the home builder flat out refused to put in transition molding (carpet to Laminate) as it is just something they do not do. Although they did put them in from carpet to LVT flooring, just not carpet to Laminate Flooring.

    I am sorry the pictures are not the best, trying to take it yourself is a bit difficult.

    I have no idea what to do at this point.

    Attached Files:

  2. Mike Sliwinski

    Mike Sliwinski The Doctor Is In I Support TFP Senior Member

    Sorry Carla, and Hi

    Good job doing research at CRI

    We have some real bone heads in our industry. I often run into this situation as I make repairs and correction when others refuse
    to do so. I think it's an opportunity to SHINE and Market your skills, but I guess others don't think the customer deserves quality service, what a shame.

    Where do you live ? I'll be right over ;) or find someone for you.

    They sell "J" pin tackless at most Supply Houses and that's what could have been used @ the lamanite floor and other high risk areas. It's a smaller size pin so the Kids Don't get hurt.

    Hire your own professional repair person to remove the tackless from in front of those doorways. Also remove existing tackless at Laminate fl. and install 'J'
    Pin tackless there. Finally it sounds like a proper power stretching is needed to pin the carpet firmly onto the tackless with-out the use of an electric stapler. Have your person make all the repairs, pay them, take photo's and send the original contractor a letter asking to be reimbursed, also send this information to Shaw asking them to honor the warranty after the Professional repair.

    Last edited: Jun 6, 2018
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  3. Carla

    Carla Member

    Thank You! I saw the information on the J, D, E & C pins.

    I am in Wichita, Kansas.

    I am not sure I am really up to hiring another professional to correct the entire house at this point. Maybe for just my doorways at this point.
  4. Incognito

    Incognito No more Mr. Nice Guy! I Support TFP Senior Member

    Greater Metro area of Wichita is about 650K people.
    For certain there's many dozens of carpet layers in the Wichita area that could fix your concerns. You just got stuck with the wrong one.

    You're not in an easy position to just go and have the work repaired and then "backcharge" the original installer but unfortunately your recourse at this point requires YOU to go through somewhat extreme hoops to get compensated for work that the guys who sold you the job are refusing to do.

    It's the sales/retailer/installer's responsibility to select the correct pin size for the carpeting they are selling and installing. You WILL prevail in a court of law should you be forced to the extreme. Some of the other complaints could be fixed in a fairly short period of time.
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  5. Commercial Floor Rep

    Commercial Floor Rep I Support TFP Published

    First let me qualify my statement by saying there are much more qualified carpet guys on our site than myself. I did look at the statement and you are correct as to what is said in the CRI guidelines regarding avoiding tack strip in doorways. However, I can tell you in the literally thousands of installations I've seen with stretch in carpet using tack strip in doorways is the way that a residential installation is done. There are some variations on how this is done and some various transitions outside of tack-strip that can be used but again, tack strip is the way that it's done. No other method I'm aware of comes close. In fact, when I was taught many many eons ago, the person who taught me instructed me to install a double row of strip in the doorways. The reason for this is that it's a "pinch point" for traffic flow. In other words you walk on this specific area of the carpet much more frequently than say a spot in the middle of the room. This extra traffic tends to put more "stress" on the flooring assembly (carpet,pad & strip) at that point and can cause carpet to distort (wrinkle) due to the loss of stretch from the traffic.

    With regard to the laminate trims, I don't know why they couldn't reach some type of middle ground and accommodation. I don't know the reasoning they gave, but given my own experience I would share that many installers don't like laminate trims because they often times do not hold up well over time. They can be problematic because they are made from the same type of compressed material that the older laminate cores are made from. Many installers who have experienced these issues over the years have stopped using them because of the amount of call backs to repair or replace them over the years. There have been some improvements in durability but most installers get pretty gun shy when repairs start coming out of their own pockets. You know the old saying "...once bitten, twice shy". It's hard to get them to try them once they have had a problem. There are always work around's but many installers will simply put in a double row of strip and then a metal transition called a "z" bar and roll and tuck the edge of the carpet where it meets the laminate.

    It sounds to me like what really happened is that when they finished they didn't "rake" their pins on the strip down well enough and missed some in areas where you're walking. I don't know that "beating them down with a hammer" is necessary. Personally, I rake them down with the handle of my tucking tool. But, upon occasion when I'm in a hurry, I have missed some. Not that I think this is your responsibility, but if you want to try and fix it without involving the - Get yourself a plastic or wood handle screwdriver and use the butt end of it and run it over the spots where you're getting poked. You don't have to go too crazy but you want to use persuasive force. If you don't want to use a screwdriver use a small hammer but don't beat the snot out of the spot. Just a tap like you'd drive in a thumbtack with will do. The wire that the pins are made out of isn't extremely heavy and you don't want to bend the pins down to the point they are not hooked into the carpet or you'll lose the stretch there and have to have it fixed. Without the proper stretch being maintained by the strip and the backing your carpet will wear prematurely and this is likely why the installer stated he wouldn't warrant if he beat down the pins.

    I'm curious as to whether the areas along the walls in the pictures were done with a carpet knife or whether the installer used a carpet wall trimmer. Did you happen to see what they used when it was done?

    At any rate I hope you get your problems dealt with and you get some insight as to what might be happening. Hopefully some of the carpet guys will chime in shortly with further insight.
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  6. Carla

    Carla Member

    I d
    I did not see, sadly I wasn't here when it was installed.

    I've never lived in a house where you can feel the tacks and actually obtain an injury going into or out of every room of the house.
  7. Commercial Floor Rep

    Commercial Floor Rep I Support TFP Published


    Great information and I never even thought about the pin sizes. Everything we carry anymore is the J-pin. As I stated, I rarely do carpet so thanks for the great insight!!! I had started my post before yours but didn't actually post it for awhile because I got interrupted with some issues in the office, so I'm just now reading it.
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  8. Commercial Floor Rep

    Commercial Floor Rep I Support TFP Published


    That sucks, I hate that you're having these issues. As Mike said there are some pretty under-trained folks in our industry that don't really understand what pride of workmanship means. It's a grind. They knock this stuff in and it's on to the next job, problems are somebody else's issue. The good news is there are still many talented craftspeople in our industry and I hope you can find one to sort out the issues for you. Wish you well and hope you get things sorted so you don't have to invest in band-aids for you and the families toes! :;)
  9. Daris Mulkin

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

    Tackstrip "DOES NOT GO ACROSS DOOR WAYS" period. If you put strip across doorways then you are making yourself liable if anybody get hurt by them as in this person's case. All it takes is a little blood and bingo. Pounding them down may work but then you jeopardy the stretch and hold of the carpet, and Murphy's law you will miss one that becomes a problem. Besides who wants to step on a hard spot in the doorways. The CRI is the bible of installing carpet. Go by it and you will have less problems. Besides it was put out by the experts in the field and industry. Just saying. If I was the poster I would contact a legal person to resolve this. I'm sure they could win in a court of law.


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  10. Jim McClain

    Jim McClain TFP Owner/Founder Administrator

    Well, not period. What comes after that statement should be the alternative to tackless across her doorways and laminate.

    I never finished laminate like that and tucked carpet to the edge. It's a floating floor and it will float above the edge of the carpet, creating a trip zone. The edge of the laminate should be finished with some kind of transition trim. If the standard laminate trims are unacceptable, use something else, but use something.

    There are a variety of transition trims available for carpet. Unfortunately, many shops don't know how to upsell beyond the low end flat bar or turn & tack method. The sales person could easily show some of the vinyl inserts, wood grain transitions and custom metals and let the customer decide which look they want to finish the edges with.

    Problem is, there's too many lazy shops and retailers who rely on that one-size-fits-all way of thinking about flooring. It cracks me up when they complain about low compensation rates when they pass up opportunities like this to make a nice profit and do the job better and have a more satisfied customer.
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  11. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    Tackstrip is fine to go across doorways unless the same carpet goes into hallway. If tile/hardwood etc is in the hallway then tackstrip will be installed across the door, either tucked into the gully for tile or tucked between the baby threshold for hardwood.

    So the issue is matching the backing thickness with the pin height on the tackstrip. Low quality carpet and standard length tackstrip pins equals protrusion.

    Another thing is people learn after the fact of what/how a quality installation should be conducted.
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  12. Harry Myers

    Harry Myers Charter Member

    Ok so should they have rolled it and staple? Or should there be a snap track that matches the floor to be installed ? The real world is different. We all know that. If it were me. They should have measured for snap track threshold problem solved. Besides cutting it short.
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  13. Harry Myers

    Harry Myers Charter Member

    Also my dealers dont sell j pin need to buy it by the pallet.
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  14. Harry Myers

    Harry Myers Charter Member

    You are exactly right. The installer of the carpet is not going to buy laminate transition to match. I'm trying to figure some of these responses. J pin is a special order for me in my state costs 1000.00s. I know.
  15. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    I’ve had same exact issue buying other products from distributors, minimum quantity order. that’s BS when you need to do a job. also showed a customer a Schluter transition and had to pay 85$ to ship.
  16. kwfloors

    kwfloors Fuzz on the brain Charter Member Senior Member

    The laminate needs a carpet edge to tuck to as its not finished right now unless they glued it down. Pretty sloppy job being cut short of the wall, he needs to fix that by stretching it up. We just got a box of short pin strip in for such areas to use but it is not widely available to get. I didn't know the rules were not to bend over pins in doorways as I have done that on shorter carpets that people were getting poked by the pins. Your edge there in my book is not a doorway but a transition point. The only other way is llke Harry said, turn and tack. That is hard to do when you have used shims to build up to that other floor. Double tackstrip gets too wide, just use a tri tack. I don't know if the tri tack comes with shorter pins though.
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  17. Elmer Fudd

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

    Daris will tell you "use two layers of poly binding tape".
    It raises the carpet off the pins just slightly!

    Old guy trick!
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  18. Darren Ramey

    Darren Ramey Charter Member

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen a box of j-pin in my life. They just don’t sell it at the local supply shops.

    The “don’t use tackstrip across doorways” thing is silly. How else would you transition to glued down wood or ceramic tile on a concrete substrate? Even with a wood substrate, it looks better than a bunch of dimples from turn and tack.

    Most of the time you will not feel the pins through the carpet, if the carpet is thin you can tap the pins down about halfway before you install. They still hold fine and don’t poke though. Takes abougt 10 seconds per doorway.

    Any shop/installer that won’t take care of this for you deserves to get sued.
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  19. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    I wonder if skimming the top of the pins with a grinder would work, just pre grinded piece of tack for doorways.

    Knee kicker installers I suppose wouldn’t catch onto the pins when installers bump the carpet if dull.
  20. Incognito

    Incognito No more Mr. Nice Guy! I Support TFP Senior Member

    So you don't like the idea of adding some layers of tape.........duct tape or whatever (never heard of poly binding tape) so the pins don't protrude?

    I think you're STUCK in heavy equipment mode. Mike, who else on God's Green Earth would ever think of bringing a grinder into the equation? I always try to solve problems WITHOUT power tools because they're clumsy, expensive and require a lot of investment of my time and energy to manage from the warehouse/garage to the jobsite. I know the residential world is another extreme but.........C'mon!

    I'm lucky if I get LIGHTS and running water within 500 yards of where I'm installing. The time it takes to drag cords, adapters and power tools around generally is not worth the effort.
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