﻿ How To Measure For Carpet

# How To Measure For Carpet Installation

Measuring for carpet can be much more difficult than it might first appear.  Due to different carpet roll widths, irregularly shaped rooms, carpet with pattern matches, and the possibility of having different colors in different rooms, you would likely receive three completely different measures from three different estimators.  This is due primarily to seaming.

The majority of carpet produced today comes in either 12’ or 13’6” roll widths.  For this reason you can’t simply order 100 square feet of carpet when carpeting a 10’X10’ room.  When carpet is installed it is very important that it is laid in the same direction throughout the house.  When carpet is rolled up after being manufactured, this forces the carpets pile to point in one direction.  If carpet is not installed so that all pieces face the same direction, then light will reflect differently off the separate facing pieces making the differences very apparent.  This will further highlight where the seam placement is.  Seam placement is not something you want to draw attention to.

The reason you can’t order 100 square feet of carpet for a 10’X10’ room is due to carpet roll width.  If for instance you’re having a textured cut pile installed with a width of 12’, then you’d need to order 120 square feet of carpet (12’X10’=120’).  You could order only 100’ and seam in a 2’X10’ piece at the end of the room but it would look very unprofessional.  Generally you want to have the fewest seams possible.

Because nearly every estimator will come up with a different figure in terms of both total carpet required as well as additional labor needed, we suggest that you simply measure the length and width of each room rounding up to the nearest foot, multiply the two figures, and come up with a total square feet for your house.  For irregularly shaped rooms simply break the room up into measurable areas, and then combine them.  To find the square yards simply divide the total square feet by nine.  Then multiply the result by either the price of the carpet per square foot or yard.  Now add an additional 10% for waste as a result of the seaming process and you’ll have a very rough estimate of what your carpet installation will cost.

Keep in mind that patterns will increase the amount of waste left over after a carpet installation.  If you’ve chosen carpet with large elaborate patterns, then you don’t want a glaring seam going straight through a pattern.  For this reason the estimator will attempt to seam each room so that the patterns are optimally placed with the least amount of fragmentation.

Keep in mind as well that there can be additional labor prices included with the carpet installation.  If you have stairs an additional charge will be added per step.  For normal waterfall and bullnose steps this can be anywhere from \$7-\$14.  For fully enclosed floating steps the additional charge can be as high as \$50 per step.  You may also incur additional charges for such items as ramping to wood or tile or even for moving excessively large furniture such as pianos.  Be sure to ask the measurer when he arrives specifics about what additional labor will be required during installation.

In conclusion, it’s almost impossible to estimate exactly what new carpet will cost due to installers interpreting your housing diagram differently.  Some will measure extra tight saving carpet while others will measure more heavily in order to place fewer seams (measuring heavy isn’t always a bad thing).  You can come up with a very rough estimate yourself by simply figuring out the entire square feet of your house and multiplying this number by the carpet price per square foot.  Remember to add an additional 10% for waste.  As always, be sure to check with the Better Business Bureau before choosing an estimator to measure for carpet.