woman rolling carpet uplift guide

Carpet Removal and Uplift – the Ultimate Guide

12 July 2021

How to lift up and remove your old carpet and underlay

Looking for advice onĀ Carpet Uplift? If you're having a new carpet fitted, the chances are you'll need to lift up the old one first and then dispose of it. Doing the carpet uplift yourself is pretty straightforward and can be a great way to save some money. Read this handy guide, and you'll be ripping up your carpet in no time!


  1. Best options for carpet uplift?
  2. Tools for removing a carpet
  3. How to uplift carpet
  4. How to remove underlay
  5. How to remove gripper rods
  6. How can I dispose of my old carpet?


1. What are the best options for carpet uplift?

The main options for carpet uplift are:

  1. DIY - pull up the carpet yourself
  2. Gett your carpet fitter to do it for you
  3. Pay the retailer you bought your new carpet from to do the uplift
  4. Use a waste contractor to pull it up

If you want to uplift the carpet yourself, see below for our easy to use step-by-step guide.


2. Removal tools for carpet uplift

It's important to have the right tools to hand. We suggest the following tools to make removals a lot easier!

  • Utility knife
  • Dust mask
  • Pliers
  • Gloves
  • Duct tape
  • Crowbar
  • Floor scraper


3. How to uplift a carpet

Pulling up carpet is relatively simple - usually, if you grab a pair of pliers and go to the corner of the carpet, it pulls away quite easily.
Firstly, wear gloves and a mask. Secondly, start with the shortest wall and lift the corner with pliers to detach it from the tack strip. Next, work along the wall and lift the edge of the carpet to detach it. As you're pulling up the carpet, it is best practice is to use your utility knife to cut the carpet into strips sections. In addition to being neater, this will make the carpet much easier to carry. Then use your utility knife to cut a small square so you have an area you can easily grab hold of to pull up.

And that's it - when rolled up and duct-taped, it's ready for disposal.


man uplifting carpet


4. How to remove underlay

Underlay is a thin layer of cushioning laid beneath carpeting that makes it cosy underfoot! It also reduces wear and provides insulation against sound, moisture, and heat and is made from materials like sponge rubber, foam, felt, or recycled plastic. Underlay is simple to uplift. If it's stapled, you need to pull it up, and the staples should come away from the floor. If they don't, you can use a crowbar or pliers to remove them safely. Use a floor scraper to lift the carpet if it's glued down. Once removed, to make it easy to dispose of, cut it into strips, roll it up and then use duct tape to keep it all organised. Simple!


5. How to remove gripper rods

If you're having a new carpet installed, you can leave your gripper rods ready for the next carpet most of the time. But if they're in bad shape or have vinyl flooring installed, you will want to remove them. Gripper rods are bits of wood studded with tacks around the perimeter of the room. To remove them, safely use a crowbar. Slide the crowbar under the gripper rods and lift the strip, and they should come up. Make sure you're wearing gloves as the tacks can be pretty sharp.


caret underlay and gripper rods ready for disposal

6. How can I dispose of my old carpet?

There are 8 main ways to dispose of your old carpet:

  1. Donate your carpet for reuse
  2. Pay your carpet fitter to take it away
  3. Book a carpet retailer disposal service
  4. Take it to the tip
  5. Council bulky waste collection
  6. Hire a Skip
  7. Hippo bag
  8. Hire a private man & van waste carrier

For a full breakdown of each of these options, plus how much to expect to pay for each, see our Carpet Disposal Guide.


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