Carpet Binding Vs Turn And Tack: Which To Choose?

Are you looking for a practical install-and-finish method for your carpet? When it comes to carpeting, your best DIY solutions are carpet binding and turn and tack. But you might be wondering, which would be best for your needs. To help you decide, we have sourced quality information from the internet.

Carpet binding and turn and tack are both useful when you want to keep your carpet edges from fraying. The difference lies in their application. Carpet binding suits detachable area rug fittings. Turn and tack is better for permanent carpet fixtures.

In this article, we will discuss both methods and their DIY installation procedures. If you want to learn more, keep scrolling!

stacking carpet rolls , Carpet Binding Vs Turn And Tack Which To Choose?

What Is The Difference Between Carpet Binding And Turn And Tack?

Carpet binding and turn and tack are both practical edging methods. However, carpet binding is the least expensive solution when you want to turn carpet remnants into fashionable area rugs, while turn and tack is the simplest solution for floor to carpet transitions.

Carpet Binding

Carpet Binding - close-up of a craftman connecting the wall to wall carpet with heat bond iron.

Carpet or rug binding is a finishing option that can be done by either a heavy-duty sewing machine or binding tape. Apart from being the cheapest, it is also the easiest among the different edging methods.

This method is also compatible with many types of carpeting material and colors.

How to choose the type of binding

With carpet bindings, there are generally two different styles: standard edge (or narrow) binding and wide fabric binding. 

Narrow binding is more common in households. It shows about a fourth of an inch on the rug's face.

If you want to add an accent to the rug, then wide fabric binding is for you.  The width of the bind is between 1.5" - 3.5". Wide bindings can be stitched with either a top or blind stitch and bordered with folded or mitered corners.

To get the most from your carpet binding, you need to consider three things: material, color, and traffic.

You can select from a variety of materials like cotton, linen, jute, leather, microfiber, and nylon. As for color, you can choose a shade that blends to help it disappear or one that contrasts to make it pop out.

You also have to consider the traffic in the area where you want to place your rug. The higher the foot traffic, the easier the rug wears out. 

DIY carpet binding

Professional services are available to help you give your carpet a beautiful finish. But if you find yourself at the short end of the budget stick, here is a DIY guide using carpet binding tape:

  1. You will need a few things before getting started, including safety gloves, scissors, glue gun and stick, carpet remnant/rug, and carpet binding tape. 
  2. Peel back the cover of the tape to expose the white piping. Cut half an inch of the piping to leave space for the finishing. After, fold the binding cover back into position.
  3. Now, peel off the protective paper from a section of the tape. Position the tape under the rug so that the binding meets the edge. Then stick the adhesive in place. 
  4. Upon reaching each corner, make a linear cut on the tape and bend the binding along the angle of the corner. 
  5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 until all corners of the rug are bordered. Upon reaching the end, line and cut your binding where the first cut was made. Insert the end into the hollow portion of the binding and tape it against the backing of the rug.
  6. With the use of a glue gun, apply hot glue to the space between the piping and rug. Press for a few seconds to seal the edges. Do this until the rug's edges are completely sealed. 

Click here to view this carpet binding tape on Amazon

This carpet binding tape shown above is made from synthetic polyester and comes in many colors. Perfect for a variety of carpet designs. 

Turn and Tack

Turn and Tack - Installer Using Knee Kicker to Stretch Home Office Carpet


Floor transitions usually make use of transition strips that come in various materials. But you can also transition the flooring without using strips. Instead, make use of the turn and tack method.

How to turn and tack carpet

How to turn and tack carpet - Worker with cutter knife installing new carpet indoors, closeup

The turn-and-tack method is really just what it sounds like. You turn the carpet edge in and tack it in place. This is a type of floor transition where you do not need to use transition strips. If you are wondering how it is done, here is a guide:

  1. Before you install the carpet, you should install the padding. Roll it all the way up to the entryway or transition point.
  2. Using a knife cutter, cut 1.5" - 2" of the pad from the entryway or transition point. Try to keep the cut as straight as possible.
  3. Take the carpet and roll it over the pad to the entryway or transition point 
  4. Cut the carpet 4" - 5" longer than the pad to make sure you have plenty of room to work with.
  5. To measure how much more material you need to take off, pull the edge of the carpet up and over. Make sure the carpet's bend lines with the edge of the entryway. From the carpet, feel the pad underneath and cut the excess material along the line of the pad.
  6. When the carpet is cut to the exact size, fold the edge under it and make sure the carpet meets the pad. The idea is to make sure the carpet is fairly level. If the carpet overlaps, trim the excess material. If it falls short, add some more of the trimmed padding to fill the void. 
  7. With the help of a staple gun, secure the carpet against the floor. To do this, you need to pull the nap back and expose the backing. Then staple right along on the edge of the carpet. Keep the staples close to each other. This way, it becomes less obvious, and it helps keep the edges from fraying.

Check out this pneumatic staple gun on Amazon

You will find this heavy-duty staple gun useful for wood, carpet, and upholstery.

For a guide on carpet installation, watch this video.

You can also read How To Fit A Carpet Yourself?

Things To Remember Before And After Installation

Installing a carpet is a big undertaking and requires adequate preparation. So to make your carpet installation as smooth as possible, here are tips from professionals that will help you:

  • Clear the installation area of all furniture. If you have professionals installing for you, clear the area prior to the agreed schedule.
  • Put away all gadgets and breakables from the area of installation.
  • If you have concerns about the subfloor, make sure to raise them before the installation so that plans can be made accordingly. 
  • Make sure the plans on placements, seams, and direction of patterned carpets are reviewed and confirmed before installation.

Post-installation, there are also things you need to remember. Most considerations relate to care and maintenance, as follows:

  • As with any fibrous material, your new carpet will have loose fibers. To completely remove these, vacuum your carpet a few times. However, if the shedding does not stop after six months, contact your service provider.
  • Just like new leather, expect that your new carpet will have an odor. Know that the smell will fade over a few days. If you find the odor unpleasant, you can open your doors and windows to air the room. 

How To Remove Spots and Spills

How To Remove Spots and Spills - Closeup of man hand cleaning stain on carpet with spray bottle

Spills on carpets are inevitable, and even though most rugs and carpets are stain-resistant, they cannot always remain stain-free. To help avoid unwanted spots and stains, follow these quick steps:


With spills, you need to act quickly. Absorb the wetness using a dry, absorbent white cloth or paper towel. This is to avoid the possible transfer of ink or color from printed cloth.

Start blotting the spill from outside toward the center to keep it from spreading. Keep doing this until the spill is hardly wet.

Spots/ Stains

To remove stains from carpets, it is best to use solutions with the CRI seal of approval. Test the product first on an inconspicuous area of the carpet before applying it to the entirety of the stain.

Apply a small amount of the cleaner on a white cloth and apply from the corners then towards the center of the stain. Repeat as needed.

Remember that with either spots or spills, you should never use a brush to scrub the stain out. This will cause damage to the carpet and its fibers to fray. If these solutions don't work, contact professional carpet cleaners.

You might also be interested in this article: How to Make Carpet Soft Again [Softening Methods Beyond Just Cleaning]

Wrapping Up

Carpet binding and turn and tack have some similarities but mostly differ in their purpose. Carpet bindings are used in area rugs, while turn and tack is for permanently installing carpets.

You can have professionals install your carpets and their bindings, but there are also ways you can do it yourself. Just follow the guide we provided.

Other relevant topics:

Does Costco Sell And Install Carpet?

How to Make Carpet Soft Again [Softening Methods Beyond Just Cleaning]

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