The national average cost of carpet removal is $200. Costs will vary based on how many square feet of carpet you want removed and any special features the carpeted rooms have. It’s messy, heavy work, but a pro can tear up and haul away the existing carpet along with tack strips, glue, and the stapled-down carpet padding originally used in the installation process.
If you want new carpet, hardwood flooring, tile, or cement, you’ll need to have old carpet removed first. Many carpet removal services also specialize in carpet installation and other types of flooring. When replacing wall-to-wall carpet with new carpet from big-box stores or home improvement warehouses, removal of the old carpet will not always be included in the cost, so hiring a pro to handle it saves you time and hard labor.
What’s in This Cost Guide?
What Affects Carpet Removal Costs?
The factors that affect carpet removal project costs include the total square feet or square yards, the number of rooms, your ZIP code, and any special features such as odd-shaped rooms, stairs, radiant heating floor system, or fixtures installed into the floor. Depending on the company, there may be an additional fee for old carpet haul-away. If you want the pros to move furniture for you, you’ll likely have to pay an additional fee to account for their added time and labor. Pros may charge an hourly rate for carpet removal, or they may base their price per square foot or square yard.
Carpet Removal Cost Estimator
The national average cost of carpet removal is $200. Carpet removal is either priced by the hourly cost of labor to remove and dispose of the carpet and carpet pad, or by the square footage or square yardage of carpet to be removed. You can estimate the cost of removing carpet in your property by multiplying the number of square yards of the carpet by the price of removal per square yard. For example, Ok Corral Carpets’ standard fee for carpet removal and haul-away is $1 per square yard. Carpet removal professionals remove and dispose of wall-to-wall carpeting safely and efficiently so you don’t have to mess with it.
Cost to Remove Stair Carpet
Ok Corral Carpets’ charges $7 per step to remove carpet. Total project costs may increase for rooms with special features that require additional time, labor, or care. In addition, carpeted stairs will add to your carpet removal costs. There are additional carpet pad staples and tack strips that must be manually removed from each step, adding to the labor costs of the project. A pro may price each additional stair as an add-on to the cost, or they might roll that added labor into the total cost per square yard.
Cost to Dispose of Old Carpet
Responsible disposal of old carpet is important. How a company disposes of old carpet may contribute to what it charges. Used carpet is recyclable through the nonprofit Carpet America Recovery Effort (CARE). Recycling carpet through CARE or local recycling operations, however, is not free. Breaking carpet down and turning it into things such as composite lumber, tile backer board, roof shingles, and auto supplies is a time- and labor-intensive process. CARE estimates that recycling costs about 5 cents to 25 cents per pound of old carpet, and carpet typically weighs about four to five pounds per square yard. Taking the carpet to the dump may incur a fee as well, of course.
If you want a pro to move your furniture you may incur extra fees. For example, Ok Corral Carpets charges $2 per square yard for moving furniture. Most pros don’t mind moving a chair here and there, but when each house needs armoires and sofas and bookshelves moved, the collected time and labor costs start to add up. When hiring your pro, communicate about what (if any) furniture you will need moved and what (if any) there costs will be. This allows them to provide you with an accurate quote.
Who Should I Hire to Remove Carpet?
You don’t have to hire a general contractor to remove your carpet, but there are benefits to doing so. Licensed contractors are typically bonded, which provides a certain amount of liability protection in case they cause damage or fail to complete the job as contracted. In addition, hiring a contractor or company that’s been in business for at least 10 years makes sense because quite a bit of expertise is required for carpet removal, along with a variety of specialized tools. The more experience a carpet specialist has, the more versatile he or she will be. For example, Cardy’s Carpet Service can provide stretching, patching, and repair services as well as removal of old materials. Owner Cardy Moten and his brother learned the trade from their father, so have lots of experience. Even experienced carpet and flooring experts need to keep their industry knowledge up to date. Brent Wohrer of the The Floor Corps and J. Federico Godinez of Fred Carpet and Flooring Installation keep up with industry trends by completing carpet and tile classes regularly.
How to Save Money on Carpet Removal
Professional carpet removal costs may be lower if you are having the same company install new flooring during the same project, so bundling services is a way to save. Provide as much information as possible upfront about your carpet removal, repair, or installation project to avoid surprise costs.
Tackling carpet removal yourself is another way to save. Be prepared for some heavy lifting and dirty work. You’ll need a utility knife, pry bar, and well-rated dust mask to protect yourself from carpet fibers and dust. Removing old carpet can be a DIY project, if you have a safe and legal place for carpet disposal, the muscle power to carry the old carpet out, and the ability to remove all the old carpet pad staples, tack strips, and other old materials yourself.
Finally, repairing your carpet instead of removing it is another way to save, especially if it means that by repairing you save on the cost of new carpet installation. Learn more about when to repair and when to replace carpet.