How to Trim Berber Carpet Properly
Often, Berber carpet and others like it are chosen for their soft, homely feel. They work well when it comes to households where there's going to be a lot of activity, and they are quite resilient when it comes to stain resistance. Installing carpet of this type, however, can be a bit of a hassle. If you're trying to put the finishing touches on a room you're covering with Berber, here are a few tips to help you get done without too much of a headache.
Proper Cutting During Installation
Trimming strips of Berber to fit the dimensions of the room as you measured them can be a bit more challenging than it may seem. Even if your measurements were fairly close, there is usually a little bit of excess left over around the edges and corners. If you end up with this, it's not necessarily a bad thing. It's better to have a bit too much than a bit too little once it's all laid out, and this shows that you have a little bit of common sense as a carpet installer. Still, the excess carpet will need to be removed.
Because Berber carpet is composed of thousands of tiny loops, you have to be careful when you're marking the excess carpet to be cut. Since the loops are typically arranged into rows, your best bet is going to be to try and cut between these rows as much as possible. This will avoid cutting the loops too much, which will give the carpet beneath your baseboards a frayed appearance.
The Easiest Way to Trim
The easiest way to deal with this is to mark the extra length along these rows, and then cut it from the backside of the carpet. Simply peeling the carpet back and cutting the underside of it along that border you just marked should work just fine. It's possible to cut it from the front, but much more difficult. The loops of yarn tend to get in the way, and it's much easier to botch the cut. There's no reason to get overly complicated with how you cut it. As long as you go slowly enough along the line you made, a simple utility knife should serve you well enough.
Dealing With Frayed Loops
Once the carpet is all ready to go, that doesn't mean that the carpet can't still fray at the loops. If this happens, the severed ends will stick up and look longer than the rest of the carpet. They'll stand out to people that visit, and will need to be trimmed back down. Try to avoid the temptation to part the carpet around the offending strands to cut out the entire thread. This can lead to gaps in your carpet over time, which are every bit as much of an eyesore as the loose strands. Instead, take a simple pair of tailoring scissors, and trim the strands as level with the rest of the carpet as you can. No one will be able to see any imperfections in the Berber unless they are literally inches away from it, and it keep the surrounding strands from folding over to fill in the gap.
Berber can be a bit of a hassle to take care of, but the soft feel of it more than offsets the difficulty of installation and maintenance. When you walk across it, you'll hardly be able to believe it's synthetic.