Clarification needed: laminate to carpet transition


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Old 09-17-07, 05:43 PM
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Clarification needed: laminate to carpet transition

I will be installing TrafficMaster (HD brand made by Shaw) laminate flooring within the next couple of weeks. I've not done this sort of job before, but I like to think of myself as pretty handy and overall the job doesn't look too bad.

I do have a question, though, with regard to the two transitions that I will need to make from the laminate floor to carpet in other rooms. I bought the matching 5-in-1 transition pieces, and the "carpet transition" is basically a flat edge piece that I guess the carpet is supposed to butt up against. I've read several posts from others asking similar questions, and the replies are usually along the lines of:

1) Remove tack strip & pull carpet & padding back
2) Install laminate floor to desired point (leaving 1/4" expansion gap) and install transition
3) Install carpet tack strip near transition edge, and I've seen "near" defined as 2/3 of the carpet THICKNESS
4) Squirt a bead of carpet sealant into the "void" (presumably the gap between the tack strip and the transition molding)
5) Stretch carpet back onto tack strip, trim to leave a small amount of excess (how much?)
6) Stuff the excess carpet down into the "void" (again, presumably the gap between the transition and the tack strip)

Am I correct in how I define what this "void" is? Since the transition molding itself has a hard edge on the side the faces the carpet, there is no "void" under it as there would be with a T-molding (which I've read not to use in this case, as the one side of the T will be unsupported and eventually break).

Sorry for likely being dense, but I'd rather know ahead of time what I'm going to have to deal with than get that far and have to wait on a reply from one of the smart folks.

Thanks!

-Bob
 
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Old 09-18-07, 07:10 AM
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Well I'm deff. not one of those "smart folks" you speak of but hopefully I can help a little until someone more qualifed comes along. I had this same question not to long ago & never received a definant answer regarding the question because I think there are just to many variations of carpets (i.e. thickness, softness, etc.) so it's hard for someone to really tell with out seeing it.

My carpet is relatively the same height as my 12mm flooring +/- so I was somewhat confused as well. I ordered my transition pieces & I used an "End Cap" for this transition. I basically cut back the padding underneath the carpet just enough so the carpet could kind of angle down with out being obvious & pinched the carpet down between the subfloor & end cap side. I was able to somewhat angle the transition strip a SMALL amount so the end cap would pinch the carpet & the T side of the transitition piece would still be flush with the laminate, if you know what I mean!?

Hopefully this will help a little or at least give you an idea.
By the way not trying to discourage you or anything but I've read a couple posts on here saying that 5-in-1 transition package is VERY delicate & ended up being cracked/broken within a week or so. Just wanted to let you know so you can keep an eye out for any problems after your done.

Good Luck!
 
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Old 09-18-07, 07:33 AM
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Yeah, I understand how you did yours. Our carpet is a very heavy berber, and judging by the comments made by the installers, it's not very flexible at all. I actually wonder if I can't just get away with running the carpet right up to the transition and just cutting it off flush. I could squirt some carpet sealant on the subfloor to hold it down and keep it from unraveling?

I know this isn't rocket science, it's just new to me.

Here is a picture of the existing carpet -> linoleum transition. The laminate (8mm) & underlayment is going down over the linoleum and I'll need to replace (I assume) the metal transition strip currently in place:

http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u...ge004Large.jpg

Thanks for the reply!!

-Bob
 
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Old 09-18-07, 08:13 AM
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Yeah I see what you mean, that's a lot heavier carpet then what I have. You could probably do as you said & just but it up against the transition piece & use a little carpet sealant to keep it in place.

If I were you I'd go ahead & tear up the transition piece before you strart the actual job so you can put a plank of your laminate against the carpet & see the difference in height & get an idea for yourself as to how flexible the carpet really is & move accordingly. It may not be as bad as they made it seem!?

Your assumption was correct, you'll replace the metal strip with your transition piece.
 
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Old 09-18-07, 09:31 AM
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I am not sure how it is supposed to be done but we recently had hardwood installed and I love the way our installer did the transitions into the carpeted bedrooms from the hall that was the new hardwood.

I watched him and he had a piece of wood as long as the door but quite thin and basically wrapped the carpet around the wood piece so it butts right up to the hardwood right under the center of the door with no transition piece . One of the rooms had a bit thicker carpet so he removed a bit of the padding to make the carpet flush with the hardwood. It looks great and did not look to difficult to do other than the pulling and wrapping around the wood piece. It looked as though that piece was specifically made for that job and he had 4 doorways to do like that.

He did show me the option of having a transition wood piece that covered the edge of the hardwood and kind of sloped down over the carpet but it did not have the clean cut look that this method does. He had the pieces for the doorways on hand but I liked this look much more.

Hopefully an expert will write more about the different options. I had the feeling there were several ways to do it depending on the carpet and the finished look you prefer. Good luck!
 
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Old 09-18-07, 05:19 PM
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What is that existing transition? It looks like a gold flat metal transitioning to a different carpet which transitions to a silver clamp down. If so, what is under the carpet? I've seen instances where old carpet was used as pad instead of tearing out the existing carpet and replacing it with actual pad. Is this what you have going on? If so, all of it will need to be removed to get to a solid sub floor surface. Next, you'll need to determine where the new termination needs to be. If the transition happens in a doorway with a hung door, you want the two dissimilar materials to terminate directly under the door so that, with the door closed, you don't see laminate on the carpet side or carpet on the laminate side. If the transition happens in a pass through with no door, the termination point needs to be in the center of the pass through so it will look balanced. Once the termination point has been determined, the standard termination is an end cap piece. It has, as you already know, a fairly blunt edge the carpet terminates to and the other edge lips over the laminate. Install the laminate and termination piece, then terminate the carpet. One potential problem I see involves what the existing termination is. If the silver colored edge is already in the correct termination point, you won't have enough carpet to reach the transition. If the carpet is terminated in the correct place, there should not be a problem. If the silver edge is the correct termination point, you have a decision to make. You can ignore what should be and just deal with reality, or you can seam on a piece of carpet that allows you to terminate in the proper place. However that goes, once the transition piece is in place, squirt some carpet seam sealer at the bottom edge of the transition piece, install tack strip along the termination piece, and stretch the carpet to it. Trim the carpet, leaving a small amount of excess, and stuff it to the termination piece. The seam sealer is there to keep the edge of the carpet from unraveling in the future. It is not a good idea to do this without tack strip. The carpet will not be stretched at this transition point and will, over time, develop wrinkles at this point. It really needs to have tension on it to cause it to behave properly any real length of time.
 
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Old 09-18-07, 07:52 PM
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Thank you so much for taking the time to reply.

To address the questions that you had:
1) The old carpet/pad was removed and new carpet/pad was installed.

2) The transition is, at least from what I can see, a single piece of silver metal with a bend in it. On the carpet side, this metal piece is parallel to the floor. On the linoleum side, it meets the linoleum at an angle. I would guess that the "gold" you describe is simply a result of the lighting difference between the horizontal vs. angled halves of this single piece of silver metal. I did not watch the installers do this part of the job, but this looks to me to be the same basic thing:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/ima...0165983&sr=1-4

3) The transitions (the one I took a picture of, and another exactly like it) occur in doorways with no door. In one case, the carpet terminates on the linoleum side of the opening, so there should be plenty of carpet there to allow me to place the transition in the center of the opening. In the other case, the silver bar terminates in the center of the opening, so like you mention I'll likely have to place my transition off-center in that door opening. I can live with that.

So, it sounds like I have the right basic idea. It's just a matter of figuring out the "little things" when I get there. Thanks again for taking your time to help us newbies out. I had some extremely helpful folks on one of the HVAC forums help me with a whole-house humidifier install last year ... so I figured I'd be coming to the right place for help with this project!

Have a good one all,
-Bob
 
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Old 09-19-07, 05:33 AM
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Haha, it's an oxymoron but Smokey sure clears things up.
 
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Old 09-19-07, 07:06 AM
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Heh, heh, heh! That's pretty funny. I never noticed that. Thanks zoeyl.

hodge1 : Now that you've explained it, I can see it. You must have taken that first picture pretty close and it just wasn't registering. This getting old stuff is for the birds. You're right about this site. There are some pretty knowledgeable folks running around here, all willing to help. I've also taken advantage of some of that help and they're great.
 
 

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