DIY Network

How to Install Carpet Flooring Tiles

Replacing old, outdated and worn out carpeting with carpet tiles is an easy project any DIYer has the ability to do, and the result can be dramatic customized patterns.

More in Floors

retro pattern adds to opulent grandeur of room
  • Time


  • Price Range

    $500 - $1,000

  • Difficulty

    Easy to Moderate


Step 1: Remove the Old Carpeting

Remove any old carpeting and padding from the floor and clean the floor below. Pull up the tackless strips at the edge of the carpet if present and remove any staples and nails left in the floor. Vacuum the floor thoroughly.

Step 2: Determine the Tile Direction

Look on the underside of the carpet tile to find the arrow. The arrow indicates the direction of the tile. Make sure each tile is run in the same direction.

make sure tiles are all running in same direction

Step 3: Dry Fit the Tiles

Lay out the tiles in the pattern to make sure the tiles can be arranged in a pleasing manner. This is especially important with bold patterns, large rooms or rooms with walls that are out of square.

Step 4: Install the First Carpet Tile

Slide the first floor tile up underneath the baseboards in the corner of the space. Apply double-sided carpet tape to the corners of the carpet square, or simply pull the tabs away from the squares that already come with adhesive strips. Or, if the carpet tiles are like the ones pictured and don't have the adhesive strips, spread adhesive to the floor with a trowel before laying the tile. Make sure the adhesive is spread evenly on the floor, because any uneven areas will transfer through the tiles and will feel and look bumpy. Check with the carpet tile's manufacturer and installation instructions to see which type of adhesive works best.

apply double sided carpet tape to corners

Step 5: Continue Laying Carpet Tiles

With the first tile in place, lay the next one, making sure the edges are aligned and the pile on each is running in the same direction.

all carpet tile needs to run in same direction

Step 6: Cut Partial Tiles to Fit

When it comes time to cut a tile, take the dimensions, mark them on the back of the tile to be cut and use a utility knife to cut. To ensure straight cuts, use a framing square as a cutting guide. Place cut tiles with the cut edge toward the wall. Two factory edges will give a cleaner seam between abutting tiles.