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Become A Carpet Installer

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Working As A Carpet Installer

  • Performing General Physical Activities
  • Handling and Moving Objects
  • Getting Information
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Repetitive

  • Make Decisions

  • Stressful

  • $64,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Carpet Installer Do

Flooring installers and tile and marble setters lay and finish carpet, wood, vinyl, and tile.

Duties

Flooring installers and tile and marble setters typically do the following:

  • Remove existing flooring or wall covering
  • Clean and level the surface to be covered
  • Measure the area and cut flooring material to fit
  • Arrange flooring according to design plans
  • Place flooring, using adhesives, nails, or staples
  • Fill joints with filler compound and remove excess compound
  • Trim excess carpet or linoleum
  • Apply necessary finishes, such as sealants and stains

Nearly every building has a finished floor, and flooring installers and tile and marble setters lay the materials that improve the look and feel of homes, offices, restaurants, and other buildings. Although most of the materials installed by these workers cover only floors, some materials are also installed on walls and countertops or in showers.

A smooth, even base of mortar or plywood is required in order for floors and tile to be installed. The base may be installed by flooring installers and tile and marble setters or by other construction craftworkers. When remodeling, workers may need to remove the old flooring and smooth the surface.

Carpet installers lay lengths of carpet on new floors or over older flooring. They use special tools, including “knee kickers,” to position the carpet and power stretchers to pull the carpet snugly against walls. Carpet seams are joined with special heat-activated tape.

Carpet tile installers lay small, modular pieces of carpet that may be glued into place. Carpet tiles allow for easy replacement and design patterns that are not possible with standard carpet.

Floor sanders and finishers perform the final steps in hardwood floor installation. After carpenters install the hardwood floor, workers use power sanders to smooth it. They apply stains and sealants to preserve the wood.

Floor layers, except carpet, wood, and hard tiles, install a wide variety of resilient flooring materials. Linoleum installers lay the hard, washable floor material of the same name. The linoleum is cut to size and glued into place. Vinyl installers install plastic-based flooring that includes vinyl ester, vinyl sheeting, and luxury vinyl tile. Installers of laminate, manufactured wood, and wood tile floors are included in this category.

Tile and marble setters install ceramic and marble tile. Tile installers, sometimes called tile setters, cut and place tile. To cut tiles, workers use wet saws, tile scribes, or handheld tile cutters to create even edges. They use trowels of different sizes to spread mortar or a sticky paste, called mastic, evenly on the surface to be tiled. To minimize imperfections and keep rows even, they put spacers between tiles. Spacers keep tiles the same distance from each other until the mortar is dry. Tile finishers apply grout between tiles after the tiles are set, using a rubber trowel which is called a float. When the grout dries, they must wipe the tiles for a clean, finished look. Marble setters cut marble to a specified size with a wet saw. After fastening the stone, marble setters polish the marble to a high luster, using hand or power sanders.

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How To Become A Carpet Installer

Although some flooring installers and tile and marble setters learn their trade through an apprenticeship, most learn on the job, sometimes starting as a helper.

Education

There are no specific education requirements for someone to become a flooring installer or tile and marble setter. A high school diploma or equivalent is preferred for those entering an apprenticeship program.

High school art, math, and vocational courses are considered helpful for flooring installers and tile and marble setters.

Training

Most contractors have their own training programs for flooring installers and tile and marble setters. New workers typically learn by working with experienced installers. Although workers may enter training directly, many start out as helpers. 

New workers usually start by performing simple tasks, such as moving materials. As they gain experience, they are given more complex tasks, such as cutting carpet. Some tile installer helpers become tile finishers before becoming tile installers.

Some flooring installers and tile and marble setters learn their trade through a 2- to 4-year apprenticeship. For each year of the program, apprentices must complete at least 144 hours of related technical training and 2,000 hours of paid on-the-job training. Some of these programs now include online training. Many new workers begin with 12 weeks of preapprenticeship instruction at a training center to learn construction basics. This instruction may include mathematics, building code requirements, safety and first-aid practices, and blueprint reading.

Several groups, including unions and contractor associations, sponsor apprenticeship programs. The basic qualifications for entering an apprenticeship program are as follows:

  • Minimum age of 18
  • High school education or equivalent
  • Physically able to perform the work

After completing an apprenticeship program, flooring installers and tile and marble setters are considered to be journey workers and may perform duties on their own. 

Some flooring manufacturers offer product-specific training for their products. In addition, some installers attend conferences that offer training sessions in various flooring materials.

Certification

The Ceramic Tile Education Foundation (CTEF) offers the Certified Tile Installer (CTI) certification for workers with 2 or more years of experience. Applicants are required to complete a written test and a hands-on performance evaluation.

Several groups, including the Ceramic Tile Education Foundation, the International Masonry Institute (IMI), the International Union of Bricklayers & Allied Craftworkers (IUBAC), the National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA), the Tile Contractors’ Association of America (TCAA), and the Tile Council of North America (TCNA) have created the Advanced Certifications for Tile Installers (ACT) program. Certification requirements include passing both an exam and a field test. Workers must also have either completed a qualified apprenticeship program or earned the CTI certification to qualify for testing. The program offers certifications in five specific areas of tile installation:

  • Large-format tile and substrate preparation
  • Membranes
  • Mortar (mud) floors
  • Mortar (mud) walls
  • Shower receptors

The National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA) has a voluntary certification for floor sanders and finishers. Sanders and finishers must have 2 years of experience and must have completed NWFA-approved training. Applicants are also required to complete written and performance tests.

The International Certified Floorcovering Installers Association (CFI) offers certification for flooring and tile installers. Installers need 2 years of experience before they can take the written test and a hands-on performance evaluation.

The International Standards & Training Alliance (INSTALL) offers a comprehensive flooring certification program for flooring and tile installers. INSTALL certification requires 4 years of classroom and hands-on training, and covers all major types of flooring.

Important Qualities

Color vision. Flooring installers and tile and marble setters often need to determine small color variations. Because tile patterns may include many different colors, workers must be able to distinguish among colors and among patterns for the best looking finish. 

Customer-service skills. Flooring installers and tile and marble setters commonly work in customers’ homes. Therefore, workers must be courteous and considerate of a customer’s property while completing tasks.

Detail oriented. Flooring installers and tile and marble setters need to plan and lay out materials. Some carpet patterns can be highly detailed and artistic, so workers must ensure that the patterns are properly and accurately aligned.

Math skills. Flooring installers and tile and marble setters use measurement-related math skills on every job. Besides measuring the area to be covered, workers must calculate the number of carpet tiles needed to cover that area.

Physical stamina. Flooring installers and tile and marble setters must have the endurance to stand or kneel for many hours. Workers need to spread adhesives quickly and place tile on floors before the adhesives harden.

Physical strength. Flooring installers and tile and marble setters need to lift and carry heavy materials. Workers must be strong enough to lift, carry, and set heavy pieces of marble into position.

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Average Yearly Salary
$64,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$29,000
Min 10%
$64,000
Median 50%
$64,000
Median 50%
$64,000
Median 50%
$64,000
Median 50%
$64,000
Median 50%
$64,000
Median 50%
$64,000
Median 50%
$142,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Highest Paying City
Passaic, NJ
Highest Paying State
North Dakota
Avg Experience Level
4.7 years
How much does a Carpet Installer make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Carpet Installer in the United States is $65,036 per year or $31 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $29,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $142,000.

Real Carpet Installer Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Carpet Installer American Carpet South Passaic, NJ Jun 10, 2008 $70,833
Carpet Installers Performance Interiors, Inc. NY May 28, 2008 $70,833
Carpet Installer Irounbound Carpet & Tile Newark, NJ Feb 11, 2010 $63,278
Carpet Installers T.H. Flooring, Inc. Cranbury, NJ Jul 20, 2010 $55,598 -
$56,349
Carpet Installer American Carpet South, Inc. Passaic, NJ Apr 01, 2010 $55,493
Carpet Installers Manhattan Carpet Co. New York, NY Jan 30, 2012 $55,307
Carpet Installer Flooring Installation System Old Bridge, NJ Nov 27, 2009 $51,194
Carpet Installer Flooring Installation System Old Bridge, NJ Nov 25, 2009 $51,194
Carpet Installer Flooring Installation System Old Bridge, NJ Dec 18, 2009 $51,194
Carpet Installer Flooring Installation System Old Bridge, NJ Apr 09, 2010 $51,194
Carpet Installers Carpet Emporium, Inc. Irvine, CA Mar 10, 2011 $49,399
Carpet Installer Professional Carpeting, Inc. Los Angeles, CA Oct 17, 2007 $48,648
Carpet Installer Mill Direct Carpet Flemington, NJ Jan 05, 2010 $48,356
Carpet Installer Frank's Carpet & Upholestery Cleaning Santa Barbara, CA Jan 05, 2011 $48,194
Carpet Installer Frank's Carpet & Upholestery Cleaning Santa Barbara, CA Nov 30, 2010 $48,194
Carpet Installer Supervisor Carpet Emporium Inc. Lynbrook, NY May 25, 2010 $47,458
Carpet Installers G & S Carpet Mills, Inc. DBA Carpeteria Flooring Center Pomona, CA Oct 28, 2010 $44,766
Carpet Installers Builders Carpet & Drapery, Inc. Placentia, CA Oct 22, 2010 $43,577
Carpet Installers Manhattan Carpet Co. New York, NY May 18, 2009 $43,243
Carpet Installer Fenway Floor, Inc. New Rochelle, NY Oct 21, 2011 $42,491
Carpet Installers Carpeteria Floor Covering Pomona, CA Aug 16, 2010 $41,761
Carpet Installer S.J.T. Carpet, Inc. Alexandria, VA Jun 10, 2016 $40,019
Carpet Installer Hospitality Floor Inc. Springfield, VA Mar 06, 2008 $39,987
Carpet Installer Lee Floor Covering, Inc. Fairfax, VA Jan 29, 2010 $38,422
Carpet Installer S.J.T. Carpet, Inc. Alexandria, VA Aug 08, 2012 $38,255
Carpet Installer Precision Carpet Fitters, LLC Farmington, UT Aug 02, 2016 $36,856
Carpet Installer/Layer Greer Flooring Center, Inc. Greer, SC Jul 01, 2010 $36,523

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Top Skills for A Carpet Installer

  1. Study Floor Sketches
  2. Install Tackless Strips
  3. Vinyl Plank
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Take measurements and study floor sketches to calculate the area to be carpeted and the amount of material needed.
  • Measure, cut and install tackless strips along the baseboard or wall.
  • Installed Carpet, Vinyl Planking, and Laminate Operated Forklift for Loading and Unloading of Trucks
  • Pressed carpet in place over tack strips or use staples, tape, tacks or glue to hold carpet in place.
  • Installed carpet, repaired and cleaned new carpet at the US Capitol and government buildings as requested per daily job request.

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Top 10 Best States for Carpet Installers

  1. Hawaii
  2. Nebraska
  3. Nevada
  4. Wyoming
  5. Iowa
  6. Colorado
  7. Minnesota
  8. Oregon
  9. Massachusetts
  10. New Jersey
  • (6 jobs)
  • (10 jobs)
  • (15 jobs)
  • (5 jobs)
  • (16 jobs)
  • (37 jobs)
  • (13 jobs)
  • (16 jobs)
  • (11 jobs)
  • (21 jobs)

Carpet Installer Resume Examples And Tips

The average resume reviewer spends between 5 to 7 seconds looking at a single resume, which leaves the average job applier with roughly six seconds to make a killer first impression. Thanks to this, a single typo or error on your resume can disqualify you right out of the gate. At Zippia, we went through over 2,495 Carpet Installer resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

Learn How To Create A Top Notch Carpet Installer Resume

View Resume Examples

Carpet Installer Demographics

Gender

Male

84.9%

Unknown

10.0%

Female

5.1%
Ethnicity

White

63.2%

Hispanic or Latino

18.7%

Black or African American

9.8%

Asian

4.9%

Unknown

3.3%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

80.9%

Portuguese

4.3%

Chinese

2.1%

Greek

2.1%

Dari

2.1%

Persian

2.1%

Mandarin

2.1%

Arabic

2.1%

Korean

2.1%
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Carpet Installer Education

Schools

The Academy

15.3%

Columbus State Community College

8.2%

University of Phoenix

7.1%

Delaware Technical and Community College

5.9%

Ashford University

4.7%

Pima Community College

4.7%

Metropolitan Community College

4.7%

Montgomery County Community College

4.7%

A-Technical College

4.7%

Keiser University

4.7%

Central Piedmont Community College

3.5%

Wake Technical Community College

3.5%

Southwestern Illinois College

3.5%

Community College of Philadelphia

3.5%

Fox Valley Technical College

3.5%

Rose State College

3.5%

Saginaw Valley State University

3.5%

University of Central Oklahoma

3.5%

Rio Hondo College

3.5%

Nassau Community College

3.5%
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Majors

Business

21.3%

General Studies

12.6%

Criminal Justice

8.4%

Electrical Engineering

5.1%

Electrical Engineering Technology

4.9%

Automotive Technology

4.7%

Computer Science

4.4%

Precision Metal Working

4.2%

Heating And Air Conditioning

3.7%

Medical Assisting Services

3.3%

Communication

3.0%

Information Technology

3.0%

Culinary Arts

2.8%

Education

2.8%

Graphic Design

2.8%

Accounting

2.8%

Psychology

2.6%

Environmental Control Technologies/Technicians

2.6%

General Education, Specific Areas

2.6%

Drafting And Design

2.3%
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Degrees

Other

52.3%

Associate

17.8%

Bachelors

15.0%

Certificate

9.0%

Diploma

3.6%

Masters

1.7%

License

0.5%

Doctorate

0.1%
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Jobs From Top Carpet Installer Employers

Carpet Installer Videos

How to fit carpet part 1: grippers & underlay

How to lay vinyl tiles & carpet tiles part 2: laying the tiles

How to fit carpet part 2: fitting & trimming carpet

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