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When I had carpet installed in my room, I had removed the baseboard from one of the walls. When the guys installed new carpet, they put it flush against all baseboards and then flush to the wall where the baseboard was missing. Now I want to put the baseboard back, but it won't look right. What I need to do is move that entire set of tack strips inward about an inch and then remove the excess carpet. Am I going to have to restretch the carpet? It will still be on the tack strips along the other three walls, so will that be enough to keep the current stretch stable or will it need to be stretched outward in the middle?

Also, yes, I know that most people remove old baseboards, install new carpet, and then put new baseboards on top, but I didn't do that.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

You didn't mention how large your room was, but if it is fairly small you may get away without having to restretch the carpet. You will probably need new tack strip as it is difficult to remove the old without breaking it. Worse case would be that you may need to rent a knee kicker to stretch it back if the results without are disappointing. If the room is large, you may want to have a kicker ready to go. In either case, don't forget to have a 3 or 4 inch chisel or stiff putty knife to tuck the carper edge back down behind the tack strip. Good Luck.

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Thanks. The wall is 10 1/2 feet wide. Also, how much excess carpet should I leave in order to have enough to tuck it between the tack strip and baseboard? – oscilatingcretin Jun 30 '11 at 12:11

To get a consistent appearance you should:

  • Lift the carpet from the edge without baseboard (skirting board for those of us in the UK).
  • Remove the old tack strip - you will probably break this.
  • Fit the new baseboard.
  • Fix the new tack strip adjacent to the baseboard.
  • Relay the carpet - cutting it to the new length at this point.

As Shirlock points out you may well need the knee kicker to get a good result and having something to tuck the carpet down is essential.

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