• In this video, This Old House general contractor Tom Silva fixes a stairwell tripping hazard.

    1. Fold back the loose piece of carpeting to expose the stair tread.
    2. Reattach the tackless strip to the stair tread, making sure you don't nail it back into the old nail holes.
    3. Pull the carpet around the nosing, and use a knee kicker to stretch the carpet tight across the stair tread.
    4. While using your knee to push against the kicker, take a hammer and flooring chisel and tap the carpeting down into the corner where the tread meets the riser. Check to be sure tackless strip grabs onto the carpet.
    5. Use a pneumatic stapler and ½-inch-long staples to fasten down the carpeting to each and every tread.
    • Difficulty: Easy to moderate
      Pulling the carpet tight can be a bit tricky

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      Tools List

      • finish hammer
      • knee kicker
        Knee kicker
      • flooring chisel
        Flooring chisel
      • electric stapler
        Pneumatic narrow-crown stapler and air compressor

      Shopping List

      ½-inch-long staples, for use with the pneumatic stapler