Carpet Professor

Carpet Installation Cost and Measuring for Seams

Hi Alan, I’ve been reading through your CarpetProfessor website and I find it very informative. Thank you for putting this website together.

One piece of information I was not able to find has to do with what the final installation cost is based on. For example, my room is about 18’ X 16’ and I’m buying 12’ wide carpet, Due to seaming,

I think I will need to buy 12 x 32, = 384 Sq ft of carpet, even though my room is only 288 Sq ft.  My expectation is that I would pay installation only on the 288 Sq ft, I would also only purchase padding for 288 Sq ft, not 384 sf..

I know I will have to pay for the full carpet size (384 Sq ft) but it’s not clear to me which measurement would be used for the installation cost. I’d like to know so that I don’t get misdirected by a carpet salesperson.

Alan’s Reply:

Thanks for your excellent question!

When it comes to the cost of carpet installation, you always have to pay for the total amount of carpet ordered, including any material waste. Why? Because the installer has to handle the whole roll, transport it, cut it up accurately into needed sizes, seam it all together beautifully and install it all correctly.

The room figures you mentioned are correct if you only want one seam down the length of the room. However, you could do it in four pieces and save money on materials and labor.

By that I mean, if you have a 16 x 18 room (approximately) and use 12’ goods, you may only need to buy a 12’ x 18’ piece plus a 12 x 6’ for the side fill. That adds up to 12 x 24 = 288 sf.

The 12 x 6 piece is cut into 3 pieces (3@ 6 x 4) which are all seamed together to make the 4’ x 18’ fill. (This math doesn’t apply to carpets with a pattern match)

You won’t get charged any more for installation regardless of the installer having to seam up the carpet in several pieces, unless you are buying Looped Berber style carpet.

Here is my blog page that will help you make sense of measuring for carpet seams.

Be sure to check out the room diagrams on my blog page. Hope this helps!

Carpet Dealer DirectoryIt’s hard to find an honest and reputable carpet store these days! That’s why I created my own special hand-picked list of locally-owned carpet and flooring stores. They give free estimates, offer fair prices, have knowledgeable staff, provide honest measuring and use qualified installers. Are there any recommended Carpet Stores Near Me?

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The Carpet Professor

Alan Fletcher - aka The Carpet Professor, a 30+year veteran of the carpet and flooring business and trusted consumer advocate since 1998. Alan provides free unbiased carpet buying information to consumers. Visit to learn how to save time and money; how to select new Carpet or Flooring wisely; and learn how to recognize and avoid common retail Carpet scams! Free! Visit to learn more about selecting natural or engineered wood flooring, waterproof vinyl tile or vinyl plank flooring for your home, office or rental property. Free!

One thought on “Carpet Installation Cost and Measuring for Seams”

  1. I have always struggle to understand how carpet guys measure up a house. I guess i will leave it up to you professionals!

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