How Much Does It Cost To Remove Carpet?
$0.11 – $0.22 per square foot
The cost to remove carpet runs from $1–$2 per square yard, or $0.11 to $0.22 per square foot on average. The cost of removing the carpet in a 330-square foot living room is between $37 and $183, but with a minimum removal charge of $150 to $200, the average homeowner will pay $175 to remove carpet from one large room. Get free estimates from carpet removal companies near you.
Carpet Removal Cost
The cost to remove and dispose of old carpeting runs from $1–$2 per square yard, or $0.11 to $0.22 per square foot on average. The cost of removing the carpet in a 330-square foot living room is between $37 and $183, but with a minimum removal charge of $150 to $200, the average homeowner will pay $175 to remove carpet from one large room. In some cases, carpet removal can cost up to $5 per square yard or $0.56 per square foot for glued-down carpet.
|National Average Cost||$0.16|
|Average Range||$0.11 to $0.22|
Table Of Contents
Average Cost To Remove Carpet
Removing existing carpet costs between $1 and $2 per square yard, and your minimum charge will be around $150 to $200. This price does not include any repair of the nail or stapler holes, or reinstallation of baseboards. Also, removing glued carpet can cost up to $5 per square yard or $0.56 per square foot.
Before you can put down your new floors, you have to take out the existing carpet, because you can’t install new carpet or any other kind of new flooring over old carpet. Removal of the old carpet may be included in the estimate for installing the new carpet.
|Cost Factor||Average Cost|
|Basic Removal Cost||$1–$2/sq. yd|
|Glued Carpet||Up to $5/sq. yd|
|Furniture Moving||$0.23/sq. ft|
|Carpet Disposal||$.50–$1/sq. ft|
Carpet Removal Cost Factors
The cost factors below don’t note the fact that any floor repair must be done before new flooring is installed—repair of nail and staple holes are included in the cost at $0.96 to $4.34 per square foot. Carpet removal costs also don’t include reinstalling baseboards or trim which costs about $375 for a typical living room measuring 20’ x 20’). In addition to the basic cost of $1 to $2/sq. yd., factor in these extra costs below:
Removing Carpet from Stairs
Removing carpet from stairs takes extra time, as each step must be done one at a time. Each step will have carpet pad staples, tack strips, and padding that need removing. Expect to pay between $7 and $10 per step.
Remove Glued-Down Carpet
A glued-down carpet will mean a lot more work for the removal person because the glue used on the carpet is meant to last forever. And once you do get the carpet up, the glue must be scraped off the subfloor. Expect to spend up to $5 per square yard to remove the glued-down carpet.
Because of the time and labor involved in moving all the furniture out of one or several rooms, there is a fee for this service. It’s one place where you can save on the cost of removing the carpet. If your rooms are clean and empty of every single thing, the installers can go right to work. Else, expect to pay around $0.23/sq. ft. or $60/hour.
Cost to Dispose of Old Carpet
You can hire a junk hauling company to come and pick up your old carpet and haul it off. Prices vary according to location, but you can expect to pay $0.50 to $3 per sq. ft. or about $80 total.   Sometimes they will haul to the landfill, but if they have access to a carpet recycler, they may haul it there. Some landfills accept carpeting, and some won’t.
Sometimes, if your carpet is still in good shape, it can be reused. An option for reuse includes listing it on a community board online—if someone wants it, they can come and pick it up, saving you the trouble.
Cost to Recycle Carpet
Ask your carpet professional if they’ll bring your carpet to a recycling center if that’s your preference. Access to a recycling center depends on where you live. Check with your city or county to see what’s available to you. You can recycle used carpet at CARE (Carpet America Recovery Effort), or other recycling centers if they accept carpet. CARE charges $0.05 to $0.25 per pound of carpet, and carpet is heavy, weighing in at 4–5 pounds per square yard, so a 1,000 sq. ft of carpet could cost between $225 and $1,125 to recycle.
Other Cost Factors Include
- Shape of the room – if your room is square or rectangular, it will be less expensive than carpet removal in a room of a hexagon or asymmetrical shape.
- Where you live – different parts of the country will cost more or less than other parts of the country due to local labor costs.
Carpet Removal Cost Calculator
The cost to remove carpet is figured in square yards or by the hour. The cost to remove and dispose of carpet will run about $1–$2 a square yard, or up to $5/sq. yd if the carpet is glued down.
Here's how to calculate your room size:
- Measure the width and length of the floor.
- Multiply the width by the length. For example, if the room is 8’ x 10’, the square footage will be 80 square feet.
- Divide the square feet by 9 to get the square yardage. In our sample, that would work out at 8.88 sq. yds.
Calculate your carpet removal cost:
- Multiply the total square footage by the cost of removal per sq. ft. your carpet removal company is charging.
Because there is a minimum charge, the cost will get cheaper per square yard the more carpet you need removed. If you’re purchasing new carpet, sometimes removal of the old carpet is included in the price of installation. Ask your carpet professional what’s included in the bid.
DIY Carpet Removal or Hire a Pro
Carpet removal is a good DIY project, requiring little in the way of specialized tools or knowledge. The main thing needed is muscle. You can save money by doing a few things.
- Move your furniture out of the rooms to be carpeted.
- Remove the old carpet yourself.
- Haul off the old, removed carpet.
Check with your carpet company to determine which of those things will save you the most money. All your labor could be worth nothing if the professional includes the cost of removal in the estimate.
A room of carpet takes 2 to 3 hours to remove, usually less time than that if things are straightforward. Removing carpet and padding is going to kick up some dust and carpet fibers, so be sure to use a good-quality dust mask.
How To Remove Carpet
- Pull the carpet up and away from the wall, releasing it from the tack strips along the edge of the room. They are very sharp, so watch out for them.
- Using the utility knife, slice the carpet into strips.
- Roll them up and duct tape them.
- Remove the padding in a similar fashion, removing all the staples.
- Remove the tack strips along the outside edge of the room.
- Dispose of the carpet.
What if my carpet is glued down?
If your carpet won’t pull up, it was probably glued down. Glued-down carpet is a big job and may require some specialized carpet removal tools which you’ll have to rent. Rent a power carpet puller for 4 hours for $140  or a carpet-pulling claw, which is only $4  for 24 hours. If you want to pay someone to remove this carpet, it will cost up to $5 a square yard. This price does not include resetting baseboards or coving.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it easy to remove carpet?
It can be easy if all the circumstances are right. If the carpeting were installed using tack strips along the edges of the room, it would be reasonably easy to remove the carpet, despite the carpet’s size and weight. If the carpeting were glued down, that would be a lot more work, and you’ll need specialized carpet removal tools. The glue used on carpet is meant to last forever. And once you do get the carpet up, the adhesive must be scraped off the subfloor.
Can I recycle my carpet?
Access to a recycling center depends on where you live. You can recycle used carpet at CARE, or other recycling centers if they accept carpet. CARE charges $.05–$0.25 per pound of carpet, and carpet is heavy, weighing in at 4–5 pounds per square yard, so a 1,000 sq. ft of carpet could cost $225–$1,125 to recycle.
Can I just put my old carpet out on my regular garbage day?
Probably, but only on a large-item pickup day or if you call and make a special arrangement. Call ahead before lugging all that carpet to the curb and then having it to haul it back into the garage.
My carpet is in good shape; can I donate it?
The answer is probably not. There are always exceptions, so call the place you’d like to donate to and ask. Many places no longer take donated carpet that has been removed from a home because of allergies, pet dander, mold spores, or pet stains, even though it looks clean.
Hiring Your Carpet Removal Company
Be sure to hire a company that’s licensed, bonded, and insured.
- Licensed - A contractor who is licensed means s/he’s met all state requirements to do the job correctly.
- Bonded - Contractors carry surety bonds, which ensures they complete your job on time.
- Liability insurance - The contractor’s liability insurance will take care of any damages if workers get injured on your property.
Removing carpet is dirty, heavy work. If you’re installing new floors, it absolutely must be done, but chances are you can get a good deal from a local carpet provider happy to include the cost of removal in the quote to install new carpet.
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