How to Lay Carpet Without A Knee Kicker – 8 Easy Steps

how to lay carpet without a knee kicker

When installing a carpet in your house, having a knee kicker makes the carpet laying easy. However, there are other means to lay a carpet without a knee kicker and this article is written to guide you on this ways.

We will show you just how to lay carpet without a knee kicker so you don’t have to go sourcing for a knee kicker the next time you want to lay a carpet in your house.

Read: How to keep carpet edges from fraying

How to Lay Carpet Without A Knee Kicker

For this purpose, you will need the following tools;

  • Staple gun
  • Tack strips
  • gloves
  • The carpet, and its padding
  • A carpet cutter
  • Measuring tape.

Measure the Room

You have to start by measuring the room in which the carpet would be installed. This would enable you to know the size of the carpet to buy.

You have to carefully take the length and width measurements of the entire room so that you won’t buy the wrong size.

Remember to add a few more inches to the exact measurement you got so that the carpet will have enough left for doorways and enough to latch onto the tacks. For this, consider adding an extra five percent of the exact measurement.

Clean the Room

Clean the floor of the room in which the carpet is to be installed. Ensure that there is no dirt particle or object left behind; if possible, mop the room properly with water and dry it.

Install the Carpet Tack Strips

Carpet tacks are thin pieces of wood with sharply pointed tacks. They are attached to the subfloor around the room to provide the anchor point for the edges of the carpet to be gripped.

Install the carpet tack strips in the room. They should be placed all around the perimeter of the room. Also, ensure that you give a 3/8″ gap between the baseboard and the tack strip.

Ensure that the side of the tack strips with the printed arrows is pointing towards the wall.

Cut the Carpet Padding and Lay It

Measure the carpet padding. Ensure that it has the exact dimensions as that of the perimeter of the floor. Cut the carpet padding using your carpet cutter into the exact square footage of the floor with the width of the tack strips subtracted from it.

Start laying the carpet padding on the floor from the side of the room closest to the left side of the room’s door. Take care when applying the padding so that it doesn’t rest on any of the tack strips.

When you are done laying the carpet, you can use your staple gun to staple the carpet padding in place. You can also use glue for this.

Cut the Carpet And Lay It

The next step is to cut the carpet to size. You must cut the carpet to be the same in length and width as that of the room.

Once you are done cutting the carpet to size, start laying the carpet on the floor over the carpet padding. Start from the side of the room that is the farthest from the room’s door. Unroll the carpet as you work your way towards the room’s door.

Stretch the Carpet

Now, this is where you will learn how to lay the carpet without using a knee kicker. You will be using a method known as the “jump method.”

As the name implies, you will have to make an actual jump to apply this method. You have to visit the edges of the carpet near the wall while facing the tack strips.

The idea is to jump forward with just one foot while using the momentum from landing to push the carpet forward towards the tack strips.

Remember that the goal is for the carpet to touch the tack strips at every edge. Therefore, you must keep repeating the jump process until the carpet touches the tack strip at the edge.

Do this at every corner of the room until the carpet edges touch all the tack strips at every corner of the room. Walk around repeatedly to inspect that everything is even.

Read: How to fix matted carpet

Attach the Carpet To The Tack Strips

For this procedure, you must ensure that you have your pair of gloves on. It must be a workman’s glove because of the nature of the tack strips.

Once you have your hands secured with your workman’s gloves, start hooking the carpet edges onto the tack strips carefully and appropriately. Ensure that no tack strip is left unhooked to the carpet.

Once you are done with that, move around and inspect the carpet, especially the carpet edges. Remember that everything must be even.

If you notice that any edge of the carpet is risen above the ground, and touching the wall, do not hesitate to trim it down to proportion using your cutter.

If you notice any wrinkles or folds, try using your foot to push it down. You can also use a steam-pressing iron to even out any folds or creases.

Sweep the Carpet

Once you are done with all the above, get a broom or a stiff brush and do a thorough carpet sweeping. This is because the carpet will be pretty messy due to the trimmings and adjustments made on it.

After you are done with that, your room is ready to be put to use. You can now return whatever you had taken out of the room before the process to their proper position.

Read: How to make carpet fluffy again


Laying a carpet without a knee kicker at first might seem quite tedious, but it is not impossible. It is much easier than it seems to appear to those who have never attempted it at some point.

The procedures of how to lay carpet without a knee kicker have been explained in this article. The only thing that is likely to affect the process is when you take the wrong measurement of the room. Apart from that, everything will fall in the right place if you follow the instructions.

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