Remove Old Carpet Padding

What You'll Need
Carpenters knife
Flooring scraper
Dust mask
Shop vac
Broom and dust pan
Trash bags

Removing carpet padding is not a hard task to accomplish. It requires a little bit of time and a great deal of patience. You need to make sure you purchase and wear protective respiratory masks to protect against any unwanted air born particles. This is a great weekend project for anyone that would like to lay down a new roll of carpet or who would like to install hardwood floors instead. Here is a step by step process for taking up that old carpet padding.

Step 1 - Preparation

To prepare, you will need to completely clear the room from all of your furniture and room decor. Place the furniture in another room for the time being. Assemble the carpenter's knife. You can purchase a carpenter's knife at any local home improvement center. If needed, attach your scraper handle to the scraper's head.

Step 2 - Pull Up the Carpet

Starting on the longest portion of the wall, begin by pulling up the carpet. The carpet should lift neatly off the tack stripping. If the carpet is not pulling up off the tack stripping neatly, you may need to use your carpenters knife to assist you in this process or you may need to enlist the help of a friend to give you additional muscle to complete the project. Either roll up the carpet for reuse, or cut it into small squares and throw them away in trash bags.

Most likely, some of your carpet padding will come up with the carpeting. If you intend to throw the carpet out, then don't worry about it. If you intend to use the carpet again, then you will need to scrape the padding off the carpet that you have just pulled up.

Step 3 - Remove the Carpet Padding

Begin to pull the carpet padding up. If the carpet got wet at any point in time, it may be sticking to the floor. The carpet padding may come up in portions or pieces with some of the pieces left sticking to the sub-flooring. You also may find that the carpet padding is disintegrating. If that is the case, then you will need to take your scraping tool and scrape the padding off the sub-flooring. Bring a trash bag with you.  You may also want to put on a mask protecting your face from any flying particles of disintegrating carpet padding. You should do this as a precaution because if your carpeting has been wet at some point, the carpet padding may have attracted some mold or mildew and the last thing you want is to breathe in these airborne particles.

Step 4 - Shop Vac the Floor

Using a shop vac or some other type of electric floor cleaner, suck up the rest of the carpet pad particles so that your sub-floor is completely cleaned up.